JumpBall

November 22, 2008

So The Knicks made Some Trades…

Filed under: Trade Analysis — siddhant2001us @ 8:11 PM

There were two big trades last Tuesday, but since they both involved the Knicks, we will combine them for this trade column.

Trade:

Golden State Warriors get: Jamaal Crawford, PG/SG;

LA Clippers get: Zach Randolph, PF; Mardy Collins, PG;

New York Knicks get: Al Harrington, SF/PF/C only in small ball; Cuttino Mobley, SG; Tim Thomas, SF/PF;

Why the Warriors did it: Al Harrington was very unhappy in Golden State, and you can’t really blame him. He started his career as a small forward backing up Ron Artest in Indiana, but Don Nelson had him playing as a center for the Warriors. In exchange for Harrington the Warriors received Jamaal Crawford. While his defense is poor due to his lack of attention for that half of the game, Crawford is a good offensive player with a deep repertoire to fall back on. He can shoot from anywhere, back down the many smaller point guards he faces, and get his teammates involved. Warriors fans might not like Anthony Morrow getting fewer minutes with the arrival of Crawford, but it is for the best. Morrow is a good shooter, but he needs Stephen Jackson to create for him. Crawford can create for himself as well as for his teammates. Plus, when Monte Ellis comes back, the Warriors can…start four shooting guards with Ellis, Crawford, Jackson, and Corey Maggette. I’m sure Don Nelson can’t wait.

Why the Clippers did it: Well to be honest. I am not really sure why the Clippers did this trade. Marcus Camby hasn’t played really well since they got him, but he was coming off an injury and it is still early in the season. Maybe the Clippers have a trade in place to get rid of Camby, Zach Randolph, or Chris Kaman. Regardless, the weakness that was present on this team before this trade was the lack of consistent swingmen on the Clipper roster. They fixed that by…trading away two of their swingmen?

To be fair those swingmen were Cuttino Mobley and Tim Thomas. Mobley is a shell of his former self, and Tim Thomas has never played up to the level of his talent. This trade does create minutes for talented rookie Eric Gordon and more minutes for Al Thornton who is a very good, young player. Still they now lack depth even more so at the swingmen positions while creating a logjam at the big men spots. The Clippers needed to make a change after their slow start, but I don’t think this is the way to go.

Why the Knicks did it: Bruce Ratner the current owner of the Nets has not fared very well in the present economy. It has delayed his stadium deal in Brooklyn, it has put a dent in his economy, and more important for basketball fans: it has hampered his ability to sign Lebron. Enter the Knicks. They were always primed to have a large amount of cap space by the time Lebron became a free agent, but with Donnie Walsh they have gone into over drive. All three players they have received will be free agents by 2010, and at that point the New York Knicks will have a staggering 33 million dollars of cap space to spend. That’s enough money to get Lebron and another superstar to complement him.

As for this season, well, the players the Knicks received haven’t played well in a couple of seasons. However, their respective skill sets should fit in nicely with D’Antoni. All can shoot well from outside, and are fairly unselfish with the ball. They don’t have as much realized talent as the players they replace, but perhaps this will open up minutes for Eddy Curry or Stephon Marbury.

Analysis/who won the deal(s)?: The Warriors traded a player who didn’t play for them for a player who fits their system well. The Knicks traded their surprisingly competitive present for an uncertain, although potentially promising, future. The Clippers traded two poorly playing players for a potential cancer who will play in a situation where many babied all stars like him become cancers. So, in the short term the winner of these trade flurries has to be the Warriors while the Knicks benefit the most in the long term.

November 4, 2008

Blockbuster Trade Review

Filed under: Uncategorized — siddhant2001us @ 2:45 PM

Yesterday, there was our first blockbuster trade of the season when Denver traded its all-star guard for Detroit’s finals’ MVP.

Trade:

What Detroit Got: Allen Iverson, SG/PG

What Denver Got: Chauncey Billups, PG; Antonio McDyess, PF/C; Cheikh Samb, can sit anywhere from the end of the bench to all the way up to the middle of the bench; 9.8 million dollar trade exception;

Why Detroit did it: A lot of people are hemming and hawing on how well Detroit did, but in truth they made out like bandits. They probably do take a step back this year, but so what? They didn’t just trade for Allen Iverson; they also traded for his expiring contract. When his 20 odd million dollars come off the cap this summer, they can either resign him to a lower amount or look to add quite the free agent with that cash. Actually, they can even sit on the money some more and look to add one of 2010’s amazing superstars. Lebron might not like the fact that Detroit isn’t a much bigger market than Cleveland, but he might be enticed by the fact that Detroit would be built to deliver him a championship much faster than a rebuilding Nets or Knicks team.

For the short term, this is going to be entirely up to the Pistons. They may not want to put all of their eggs in Iverson’s basket, but in my opinion, this team resembles an ultra-talented version of the 2000-01 Philadelphia 76ers. Everyone plays defense and knows their role. If any team is built to not only withstand, but actually thrive with Allen Iverson taking 25 shots a game, it is this Detroit team. It would be quite the burden for young coach Michael Curry to scrap the majority of the training camp game plan for a new one, but the East is week, and this team should be able to make the playoffs on talent alone. Once they get used to Iverson’s style of play, they should be able to take off.

So what is Iverson’s style of play? Contrary to popular belief, Iverson is not someone who likes to take 90 percent of his shots from the perimeter (that would be Vince Carter.) He loves to drive to the hole and draw the foul. Then when things open up for his teammates he has no problem dishing it out to them for easy buckets especially big men smart enough to cut in for an easy dunk or two. This didn’t work in Denver because Iverson needs to dominate the ball for this to work, and that wasn’t possible with Carmelo Anthony needing just as many shots as Iverson on a game to game basis. Then they brought in Anthony Carter to take over the ball handling duties there and once again the full value of Iverson was diminished in Denver. Detroit shouldn’t let that happen. After all, if it doesn’t work out, all you do is decline to resign him this summer and you’re left with a whole bunch of cap space.

Why Denver did it: With Camby gone via trade, Denver was positioned to be even worse at defense. It is one thing for a veteran Detroit team to cover up for Iverson’s lack of attention on defense, but that is simply not possible for this Denver team whose players aren’t good enough to consistently cover their own guys much less a star on the other team. So they got rid of their biggest liability in that area by trading Iverson for the bigger, stronger, and more defensively inclined Chauncey Billups. Also by trading for Billups, Anthony Carter moves to the bench where he becomes one of the NBA’s best back up point guards, JR Smith moves to the starting lineup where he can have more flexibility to take shots and not have it cost him minutes if he misses, and added a starting point guard who is more than willing to take on the Chris Pauls and Deron Williams of the conference.

Antonio McDyess is another matter entirely. If he plays, he is immediately inserted into a three man rotation at the big positions of PF and Center. He gives them much needed depth in those areas, and could easily be counted on to play during the waning moments of the fourth quarter. However, there are early reports that indicate that he would actually prefer to either be bought out or retire rather than leave Detroit.

Regardless the big news out of Denver is that the starting lineup is now Billups, JR Smith, Anthony, Kenyon Martin, and Nene Hilario. That is certainly a playoff team even in the deep western conference, which is a big step up for Denver who previously was looking at having to scrape their way to the top. Add in the fact that it most likely keeps them from having to pay luxury tax, and you can see how it can be seen as a good deal for Denver.

Final Analysis/Who got the better end of the deal: However, it isn’t a good deal for Denver. Yes, they get under the luxury tax for this year, but the screw over their cap flexibility for three more years. That isn’t the way you help Carmelo Anthony bring home a championship banner. Yes, the pieces they received in the trade help, but how happy are the fans in Denver really going to be now that they can definitely make the first round…but most likely get swept out of it again? Make no mistake about it either, because that’s what is going to happen. Even with Billups this team has no one to defend the other team’s opposing star swingman. You think that’s going to be a problem with Kobe comes to town? Actually, Billups himself comes with a host of concerns after last season which was not a good one for him. His NBA career isn’t going to be prolonged by having to chase around Tony Parker, Chris Paul, or Deron Williams. If he has declined considerably, then Denver is stuck with him for three more years. If Iverson has declined, then Detroit can get rid of him at the end of the year and play the budding Rodney Stuckey more in the short term. I know a lot of people are writing that Denver got the better end of the deal, but I just don’t see it, not unless they can parlay that trade exception for another big man or defensive minded swingman while also convincing McDyess to return to Denver. Winner: Detroit.

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