No, no, this isn't another post by me extolling the virtues of the greatest show on television (though you should be watching it...) I'm talking about trades within the Association. With the deadline passing yesterday, lots of teams got better over the past few months, but even more teams gave up entirely, and here is my breakdown of the biggest winners and losers of the biggest trades as we cross the finish line.
Jazz receive Kyle Korver for Gorden Gircek and a 1st Rounder
Is Jazz singular or plural? Oh well, this trade was Grand Theft Mormon. I understand trying to free up some cap space after FINALLY unloading Billy King, but you could probably have gotten more for Kyle Korver. A dead eye sharpshooter to a team that made the Western Conference Finals last year, knowing they really need this missing piece? You could have bled them dry.
Lakers receive Pau Gasol and a 2010 2nd Rounder for 12 cents on the dollar
I know how Popovich feels watching this happen, when you realize that others are consipring just for the chance to bring you down. What's the crown worth if no one runs at it though? This run is apparently going to be a serious one, as Gasol is a perfect fit in the Triangle, deflecting pressure from Odom, and when Bynum gets right, this is going to be a scary starting 5.
Suns receive Shaquille "Kazaam" O'Neal for Shawn "Matrix" Marion and Marcus "Who?" Banks
I hate the cop-out answer I'm about to give, but it's true: the jury is out. As far as Shaq's impact with the Suns goes, game 1 was very promising, but if he can't sustain that level of energy and health, it's all for naught. I will admit that they most likely greatly improved the locker room, since Marion was apparently a bigger distraction than I thought, since he seems genuinely excited by playing on a 9 win team, where he is clearly not number 3 anymore. Congrats, Shawn.
Hawks recieve Mike Bibby for 1 WNBA player, 2 exipring contracts, and 1 admitted draft mistake
I refuse to say anything positive about the Hawks' chances to making the post season. They are out of the race, and have no realistic ability to be competitive this year. And for those of you wondering at home, yes, this is an attempt at an elaborate Anti-Jinx.
Mavericks receive Jason Kidd for way too much
I think I am the only person on the planet not that excited about this trade. After all the hub-bub about this trade the first time it came up, everyone knew it had to be done, but it still makes very little sense. I understand that they wanted a battle-tested PG for the playoff run, but they weakened their front line to the point of great vulnerability. Plus, I don't know how JKidd is going to fare in the West defensively against the smaller, faster guards he's going to see night in and night out (Chris Paul lit him up Wednesday for 31 pts, 11 asts, 9 stls, 5 rebs).
Cavailers receive Wally Szczerbiak, Delonte West, Ben Wallace and Joe Smith and give up Drew Gooden, Larry Hughes and Donyell Marshall in a three-way trade
Did someone fire up an '85 DeLorean? Where is the flux capaciter? How else can you explain acquiring the AWFUL contract of Ben Wallace while giving up 1 fewer rebound a game and 10 more points in Drew Gooden? Look, we all know that LeBron's supporting cast hasn't been the best the past two years, but here's something else we know: BEN WALLACE AND WALLY SZCZERBIAK are not the missing pieces of the puzzle...the only goal right now should be to make sure that there is cap space for LeBron to stay and have a GREAT cast come 2010 and you just created less space. How about a nice slow clap for, Danny Ferry.