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Blog Entry

Trade Deadline: Winners and Losers

Posted on: February 18, 2010 8:57 pm
Edited on: February 18, 2010 9:16 pm
After 11 trades in six days, the trade deadline wouldn’t be complete without surveying the wreckage and anointing the winners and losers. So before any more deals trickle out of the league office, here we go:


Cavaliers: Everybody was in agreement that Antawn Jamison was the better fit for Cleveland than Amar’e Stoudemire, and GM Danny Ferry was able to get him without giving up J.J. Hickson. LeBron gets what LeBron wants, and now he wants the Wizards to buy out Zydrunas Ilgauskas so he can re-sign with the Cavs and celebrate a championship after all the years he’s put in. The Wizards won’t have the heart to deny Z, but since they were able to maneuver beneath the luxury tax line, Washington will be able to drive a hard bargain. Sentimentality aside, the Cavs have to be viewed as the clear favorite to come out of the East and the biggest threat to win a title since LeBron left Akron-St. Vincent-St .Mary’s. 

Mavericks: Caron Butler a marginal upgrade over Josh Howard? I don’t think so. Forget Butler’s diminished production this season in Washington, where nothing went right for anyone. His size and scoring ability will be a major influence on the perimeter, but Brendan Haywood is the underrated component of this deal. Dallas’ biggest problem during its recent struggles was perimeter defense, and Haywood’s length and shot-blocking ability will only help. 

Trail Blazers: Portland didn’t want to trade Steve Blake, but in the end Blake and Travis Outlaw was a small price to pay for the much-needed interior presence of Marcus Camby. The Blazers had some conversations about minor, peripheral moves, but have to be pleased that they solidified the middle in the absence of Greg Oden and Joel Pryzbilla at such a reasonable price. 

Rockets: GM Daryl Morey raked the Knicks over the coals in the Tracy McGrady negotiation, holding firm on his demand of very little protection on New York’s first-round picks in 2011 and ’12. Then, in the wee hours Thursday, Morey was successful in recruiting a third team that could give him the piece he wanted more than any draft picks or luxury-tax relief: Kevin Martin. The sharpshooting guard will upgrade the Rockets’ struggling offense in the short term and will give them a lethal inside-outside game if Yao Ming returns at full strength next season. Giving up Carl Landry, who went to Sacramento, has to hurt, but was worth it in this case. Houston also gets Hill, a developing big man who will get a chance to follow the path blazed by Landry and Luis Scola. Despite his overpriced contract, Jeffries is a serviceable defender who can guard three positions well. 

Bulls: Other than New York, Chicago was the biggest deadline winner in the race for 2010 cap space. Though GM Gar Forman wasn’t able to recruit a third team to deliver McGrady to Chicago, he quickly changed gears and unloaded John Salmons on the Bucks. The debit of $5.8 million in ’10-’11 gives the Bulls about $17 million in cap space – just enough to lure a max free agent who might want to receive passes from Derrick Rose

Wizards: As much criticism as GM Ernie Grunfeld deserves for the implosion of the Wizards this season, he should be lauded for digging out of it this quickly. Nobody knows if Grunfeld will keep his job through the Wizards’ ownership transition, but he was able to move nearly $40 million in future salary and get Washington under the tax line – which seemed impossible only a few weeks ago. In terms of assets, Washington gets Josh Howard and Al Thornton, who will have a chance to prove they’re worth keeping around, Cleveland’s 2010 first-round pick, and Sacramento’s 2010 second-round pick (for Dominic McGuire and cash, in the deal that pushed them under the tax line). Next up: Dealing with Gilbert Arenas and the $80 million he’s owed over the next four seasons. 

Grizzlies: Memphis already had two extra 2010 first-round picks, so sending a protected first-rounder in 2011 to Utah for Ronnie Brewer was a no-brainer. Both teams can claim victory in this deal. The Jazz get some much-needed luxury tax relief (without trading Carlos Boozer), and Memphis gets a steady wing player to come off the bench. 


Celtics: Team president Danny Ainge kicked the tires on a lot of deals, but decided to move forward only with the acquisition of Nate Robinson for Eddie House. So for the second straight year, the Celtics get a guard the Knicks didn’t want, which can’t bode well. Robinson will give the Celtics some tempo and scoring off the bench, and let’s face it – Boston needs any kind of lift it can get. But if you accept the theory that Boston simply isn’t good enough to get through Cleveland or Orlando in the playoffs, they may come to regret failing to flip Ray Allen’s $19 million expiring contract into a starting shooting guard (Kirk Hinrich?) who would’ve helped them remain competitive next season. 

Suns: Phoenix once again dragged their franchise player, Amar’e Stoudemire, through a miserable two-week period fraught with trade rumors, only to do nothing. As a result, the Suns will be able to continue their playoff push and lose in the first round. It’s a foregone conclusion that Stoudemire will exercise his early-termination option on June 30, and the Suns will be under immense pressure to work out a sign-and-trade with less leverage than they had in the past 48 hours. It’s hard to criticize a team for not making a deal, especially when their current level of competitiveness won’t be compromised. But the Amar’e albatross was crying out to be lifted, and he’s still there. 

Nuggets: Denver felt strongly that it needed to add another frontcourt player to take out the Lakers in the playoffs this time. Nothing went anywhere with Antonio McDyess, and a last-minute attempt to pry Tyrus Thomas from the Bulls didn’t work, either. The Nuggets, sources said, tried to send Renaldo Balkman to Charlotte for expiring contracts they would’ve flipped to Chicago for Thomas, but the Bulls did business directly with Charlotte instead. Not a big deal; the Nuggets are still good enough to go toe-to-toe with the Lakers. But when you’re that close to getting a piece that would’ve been a difference-maker, it’s hard not to call it a disappointment. 

Spurs: San Antonio wasn’t successful in finding a new home for Roger Mason. Not a killer. But like the Nuggets, the Spurs were looking to add length and athleticism up front and weren’t able to use any of their wide assortment of expiring contracts to do so. They did the next best thing, dumping seldom-used Theo Ratliff’s $1.3 million contract – good for twice the savings when you account for luxury tax – on Charlotte for a heavily protected future second-round pick. But after going all-in and over the tax line with the Richard Jefferson acquisition, the Spurs will see their championship window slam shut if they don’t get better from within after the deadline. 

Remains To Be Seen  

Knicks: Donnie Walsh deserves a parade through the Canyon of Heroes for digging out of the mess Isiah Thomas left behind for him. But you can’t judge the McGrady trade until you see what Walsh is able to do with the cap space. Check back with me July 1. 

Heat: Miami couldn’t come up with enough to meet Phoenix’s demand in a Stoudemire trade, then made a late push with Utah for Carlos Boozer. If nothing else, they’re showing Wade how serious they are about surrounding him with elite talent. They didn’t accomplish anything this time around, but the Heat still have enough cap space to give Wade a max free agent as a teammate come July 1. I don’t buy that Miami’s desperate; the Heat already have one of the players everybody wants and they have the means to add another one. 

Kings: Sacramento became a fortunate bystander in the McGrady-to-the-Knicks scenario, finding the situation to be a good opportunity to deal Martin, whose importance would’ve only diminished as Tyreke Evans continued to develop. The Kings opened up some more 2010 cap space, so they’ll have room to spend if anybody wants to go there. And Landry is one of the most efficient big men in the game – a great get. But remember the old adage in NBA trades: The team that gets the best player wins. Martin was the best player in the deal, and the Kings traded him. So we’ll withhold judgment for that reason.

Category: NBA

Since: Feb 20, 2010
Posted on: February 20, 2010 12:40 pm

Trade Deadline: Winners and Losers

Chemistry was a big issue with the Kings...and unfortunately, Kevin Martin didn't fit in anymore. Besides, he's hurt for extended periods every year...Landry is promising, and Larry Hughes might be a bonus, or a future trade chip. Jeff Petrie always seems to land on his feet with his trades or lottery picks...I'll back his call on this one as I normally do. Can anyone doubt Tyreke Evans, Omri Casspi, Jon Brockman, Peja Stojakovic, Hedo Turkoglu, Chris Webber, Vlade Divac, Mike Bibby...they guy knows how to build a team. Sometimes, it takes a few years...

Since: Jul 29, 2007
Posted on: February 20, 2010 12:12 pm

Trade Deadline: Winners and Losers

I totally agree with your comments Salmons avg. 18 pts a game last year granted he's struggling but maybe the change of scenery will help. We have alot of young talent and we need to keep them and add a part here and there. When they make the playoffs this year we can look back at this trade that helped us. Rememeber all the great analysis had the Bucks as the worst team in the East... I know about "WHAT IFS" BUT we have lost at least 10 games by 3-5 pts. this year 2 Salmons jumpers away from a win, and with Redd he may never play again. So this Bucks fan is excited about this year and the years ahead.

Since: Feb 20, 2010
Posted on: February 20, 2010 11:33 am

Trade Deadline: Winners and Losers

Don't forget that your first round draft pick goes to Utah this year.  It's unprotected, so even if your team draws the #1 overrall pick, you still lose it.  That's not going to do you any favors.

Since: Aug 22, 2006
Posted on: February 20, 2010 6:56 am

Trade Deadline: Winners and Losers

This guy write a counterpoint artlicle and debate burger. We can call him Fries. Burger and Fries debate the Hot Stove.

Since: Aug 22, 2006
Posted on: February 20, 2010 6:54 am

Trade Deadline: Winners and Losers

Silly Burger
You spend too much time listening to the talking heads. How about an original thought? The Celitcs looked like real losers last night smoking Portland by 20. And are you really believing that the Cavs wanted Jamison over Amare? I am sure they loved that 0-12 from the field last night. Remove foot from mouth tool.

Since: Jul 27, 2009
Posted on: February 20, 2010 5:00 am

Trade Deadline: Winners and Losers


Kirk Heinrich was going to be a player that would have kept the Celtics in contention???  What drugs are you smoking?  Ray Allen may be getting older, but don't even throw those two in the same sentence.

Since: Oct 5, 2008
Posted on: February 19, 2010 10:53 pm

Trade Deadline: Winners and Losers

i think the lakers fall into both the winners and losers catagory. the lakers had a chance to get hinrick from chicago, he would have helped big time, exspecially on the def. side of the ball, look what rondo did to them last night, they have no one to guard the other teams point guard. chicago was asking for sasha and fisher, maybe a late second rd. pick, the lakers have extra 2nd round picks by the way. this was a steal for the lakers, get rid of sasha's contract and an aging, non-producing fisher. well the lakers wanted hinrick bad, and this was a good deal for them, but they have loyallty to fisher, he is a veteran, he has won four championships with them and he came to LA. from utah so his daughter could go to a hospital in LA when she got sick, he was very happy in utah, and the lakers really wanted him. say what you want about teams having no loyalty towards there players, the lakers showed some class not getting rid of fisher, however they may have dampened there chance to win another title this year for doing so.

Since: Jan 16, 2008
Posted on: February 19, 2010 9:01 pm

Trade Deadline: Winners and Losers

Have you been watching their games?  Martin is one dimensional, a pure shooter, that's it.  He's not a leader!  The Kings have been getting push around down low, and Thompson, Hawes, and Brockman are more finese players than defenders.  The Kings get a great down low player who brings instant energy once he comes in.  Dorsey, who you left out, is simply a brute and blocks and defends, but needs an opportunity to showcase his skills.   The Kings also have about 20 million for free agency next year too.  Not bad at all for a team rebuilding!  You don't know what you're talking about obviously.

Since: Jan 12, 2010
Posted on: February 19, 2010 9:00 pm

Trade Deadline: Winners and Losers

watch out for the Bulls next year...If they could convince D. Wade to come home to Chicago, their roster would be loaded...Even Joe Johnson would be nice..Check their potential starting lineup: PG: Derrick Rose..the best PG in the NBA.if not now, certainly for the next 10 years..SG: Wade/Johnson...either way, someone who can score atleast 25. SF: Luol Deng..a tall, long small forward..good defense..good on the boards.good for over 15 a game..PF: Hakim Warrick..athletic freak..C: Joakim Noah..rebound machine..great hustle..blocks..That looks like a good team, especially in the east..If not Wade or Johnson, they should get Bosh, who would replace Warrick..That would be nasty too, as long as they found a decent SG.Either way the Bulls have dumped some trash, and they should be ready for next year.

Since: Apr 1, 2009
Posted on: February 19, 2010 6:43 pm

Trade Deadline: Winners and Losers

How did being 2 and 0 against the Lakers work for Orlando last year? Never mind. How did 66 wins do last year? Same team different faces. Only differense is the players are older and at least Shaq could be solid come playoff time. Jamison was not the answer. Amare was. LeBron said it himself during all star weekend. Jamison gives Lebron a breather every so often. Amare would have done it every single game. Lebron will tire again and be out in the confrence finals too run down and shooting ridiculous jumpers, rather then driving hard to the hoop like last year against Orlando. Danny Ferry should be fired and villified for not doing everything he could to pry Amare away. Hickson and picks would have been gone in a heart beat for Amare. This blunder will cost them the title and maybe Lebron during free agency.  

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