For the weeks leading up to the trade deadline all anyone would talk about is where Dwight Howard, Pau Gasol and Rajon Rondo were going. Well none of them got moved. There were a bunch of other moves, so lets take a look at them:
The Wizards acquire Nene, Brian Cook, Clippers 2nd round draft pick (via Hornets)
The Nuggets acquire JaVale McGee and Ronny Turiaf
The Clippers acquire Nick Young
This was the most surprising move of the day for me. In the offseason Nene signed a 4 year, 53 million dollar contract. He also is having a bad season and has been injured constantly, so maybe that made Denver think twice about their franchise center. In other words Denver decided that their 29 year old center who is injury prone should be sold while his value is still high instead of waiting until the injuries kill Amar’es, I mean Nene’s value and the contract is worthless.
McGee makes dumb mistakes. A lot of dumb mistakes. Maybe coach Karl will help with that. I’m guessing Denver really really hopes that’s the case. McGee is also only 24 years old, scores as much as Nene and rebounds and blocks much better. He’s going to get paid this summer, but that contract won’t be as high as Nene’s. Which is good because Lawson and Faried are going to need bigger contracts soon.
Turiaf and McGee also both fit in the $7 trade exception from the Raymond Felton trade (not as upset about losing him after seeing what a fat mess he’s become in Portland), which means they now have a $13 trade exception.
We’ll see if McGee works well with the rest of the team. It’s a big risk because Denver is a playoff team right now, but it gives them a lot of cap flexibility and potentially a more lethal scorer in the post.
I know Washington didn’t want to move forward with McGee or Young, but it looks like they pretty much gave Young away in this deal. They are also banking on a very high paid and injury prone center. When you have a young team that is very far away from even making the playoffs I don’t know why you roll the dice on an older center. By the time Wall and company are ready to make some noise, Nene is going to be as productive as Dampier or worse. I don’t bet but if I did I would go to the best sports betting sites and put money on Washington really regretting this move in a year or two. Continue reading
The season is 25% finished already. What have we learned?
- Chicago and Miami are by far the two best teams in the east, as expected. They should really start the eastern conference playoffs with the conference finals. The first two rounds are just going through the motions.
- Philly and Indiana are better than expected. One of those two will make it to the second round this year. These teams can actually get much better at the trade deadline as they are both in favorable cap situations with a lot of movable assets. That is something to keep an eye on, especially in Indiana’s case; they are a piece or two away from being a contender.
- Orlando should trade Dwight now. Two complete drubbings in the last two games, a thin bench and a disgruntled Dwight = a situation that is barely keeping it together right now, could totally implode any day, and has a ceiling of getting a beatdown in the second round of the playoffs. Dwight is leaving, time to face that reality and rebuild.
- Atlanta will do what they do every year; lose in the 2nd round. Moving on.
- Boston is starting to get it together, 4 wins in a row and 4 easy games this week. If they can be healthy come seasons end they will be a tough draw in the playoffs. Their really weak bench is suspect, however they totally won the Big Baby for Brandon Bass trade. Continue reading
The Knicks played well tonight and it looked like smooth sailing for a while. Midway through the 3rd quarter the Knicks were up by 10 and it looked like another great victory was coming. Of course, there are 4 quarters and the Magic stepped it up late. There is a lot to like about tonight but moral victories don’t count in the standings.
- Jameer seemed unstoppable in the second half. Someone might want to guard him when he goes for a layup.
- Howard is big and Knicks are not. They had no answer for him. Though, Howard had quite a dirty answer for Billups, knocking him out of the game by sticking his knee out on a screen.
- 97 free throws tonight. That is a lot. Billups was a crazy 18-20 from the line.
- Billups and Amare had 30 while Carmelo had 25 which is great but only 12 rebounds between the 3 of them and Billups had half of those.
- Landry Fields seems always to dominate the +/- battle with a +9 tonight while Shawne Williams had a -17. Shawne actually looked good tonight but the bench was weak. This team is not going to win consistently until they can get more help off the bench consistently.
- Billups has got this team looking smooth on offense. He should be nicknamed Mr. Chemistry. I don’t know why I was resistant to swapping Felton for Billups.