NBA Draft Day Notes: (Trades, Draft Notes, Rumors)

Our thoughts on some of the trades being rumored ahead of Thursday’s draft:

Portland trades Jarret Jack, Josh McRoberts, and Brandon Rush to Indiana for Jerryd Bayless and Ike Diogu.

Great trade for both sides. Rush is a great fit in Indiana, Bayless was a poor fit. Jack is a good backup point. Indians is having a great week.

Sonics and Clippers agree to swap picks should OJ Mayo be selected 3rd.

I don’t know whats included in this deal, but it seems like, if Mayo is off the board, the Sonics will be sending their #4 pick to the Clippers in exchange for the #7 pick. I’m sure there’s some compensation to make the deal worth it, besides the smaller amount of money that a rookie drafted at 7 would get.

Holy God: Marc Stein reports that the Nets are now ready to trade Richard Jefferson to the Milwaukee Bucks for Bobby Simmons and Yi Jianlian. SImmons is only signed through the 09/10 season (though at an atrocious $10 milion), and Yi is on his rookie contract, of course. Jefferson, on the other hand, is signed through the 10/11 season at $15 million. This is a huge trade that gives Milwakuee another scorerer (though Jefferson is wildly overpaid) and allows the Nets to develop a foreign star as well as shave years and dollars off their books. A wildly successful trade for New Jersey.

Peter Vescey is reporting that Ron Artest will in fact opt out of his contract with the Kings. New York will likely be a heavy suitor, and Artest has long said he wants to play there. For Sacramento, drafting a PG like Augustin will still be a priority, but depending on how the Knicks view ther chances of signing him, their draft/trade strategy might change, with players like Balkman and Lee becoming more expendable.

New Jersey sends the #10 pick and a future 1st to Memphis for the #5 pick.

Basically, Memphis wants out of the #5. I don’t know why, but its Chris Wallace, so I’m not going to try to figure it out. The trade makes sense for New Jersey, who can get a Gallinari or Kevin Love (should Minnesota not take him).

Portland sends the #13 pick and Jarret Jack to New Jersey for Marcus Williams and the #10 pick.

This is an intriguing trade idea, the Nets acquire a good backup point guard, the Blazers take a flier on Marcus Williams, whose option they can decline next year (instead of Jack who has a qualifying offer and therefore would require a cap-hold that would hamstring their salary cap flexibility). With the 10 pick, the Blazers can select one of the better guards available, probably landing DJ Augustin, since most projections have him going to Sacramento at #12. The Nets, on the other hand, can still take one of the many forwards projected for the mid-teens.

Overall: I like this trade. The Nets can use another versatile forward, and picking at #13 does not diminish their ability to select one. So why not get a backup point guard in Jack while they’re at it? For Portland, they can acquire a DJ Augustin level point guard and increase their future salary cap flexibility.

 

Heat trade Shawn Marion and the #2 pick to Los Angeles for Elton Brand and the #7:

This trade sounds a little desperate to me. Brand is an incredible talent and I’m confident he’ll regain his previous playing form, but the Heat don’t need another PF, that’s why they’re trading out of the 2 pick to begin with. Of course, trading Haslem is always a possibility, and there are a lot of teams who would want him, but after picking up Elton Brand, the Heat would lose some leverage there too. For the Clippers, this is a great trade. They probably draft Beasley to play the 4, insert Marion at 3, and run last year’s draft pick, Al Thornton off the bench and sometimes at the 2. With Kaman having a breakout season last year, all they need is a sure-handed point guard, and could sign Beno Udrih at the MLE to put them back in contention.

Overall: I like this trade, but not as much for the Heat as for the Clippers.

Just in: Evidently Denver is trading out of this draft (like the Hornets did yesterday with the Blazers).They’re sending their #20 pick to Charlotte, in exchange for a future first, with no word on potential conditions attached to that pick. According to DraftExpress, Charlotte is keen on taking Roy Hibbert with the 20 pick, though his stock has been rising so much recently, he might not last that long.

This one’s for real: Pacers send Jermaine O’Neal to the Raptors for TJ Ford, Rasho Nesterovic, and the 17th pick:

-This trade doesn’t work without the Raptors adding a player to make salaries match. But if they added a player they would really be giving up too much value. The only way to balance value again might be to include a pick swap instead. So the trade might look like Jermaine and the 11 pick for TJ, Rasho, Anthony Parker and the 17th pick. Or, it could take shape as Jermaine for TJ, Rasho, Parker, and Stephen Graham, allowing the Raptors to keep their pick and replace Parker with another talented wing player. Either way, if the Raptors and Pacers can balance this trade out, I really like it. Provided that O’Neal stays healthy, he’s a great two-year center alongside Chris Bosh, who i would then project to have a monster year. If the Raptors keep the pick they can add a backup point, or get extra insurance if O’Neal can’t stay on the court. The Pacers have a slam dunk here, losing Rasho’s contract at the end of the year, adding a point guard, and allowing the team to concentrate its draft choices on adding depth.

UPDATE: Barring a change of heart, this trade is happening. Huzzah!

Overall: I also like this trade if the teams can make it work. It is a gamble for the Raptors but I believe that Jermaine will be rejuvenated in a new environment.

Danny’s take: A logical trade at its core- moving two flawed malcontents for each other, with the player having more value being the more expensive one. I think that the Raps giving up #17 is a little much, but tossing in a future pick or something could make it work. It’d be sad if this was one of the deals that actually fell by the wayside- it has heaps of potential.

Warriors and Pistons discussing Baron Davis trade:

I’m not sure how this one is shaping up, but Rasheed Wallace is in the mix as well as Chauncey Billups. Billups would need to play uptempo in Nellie’s system, and his contract runs for quite a while, so I’m not exactly a fan of getting him back. ‘Sheed would just be awesome, though, and I would love to see him in a free flowing system. Evidently Al Harrington is also rumored in these talks, but to make salaries match there need to be more players thrown in on Detroit’s side. I don’t like that idea because it starts to turn into a “Golden State Pistons / Detroit Warriors” thing.

Overall: I like the idea of this trade, Baron would be a great fit in Detroit and ‘Sheed could thrive in the Bay. But maybe adding a third team to the mix could make the deal work.

Danny’s take: Makes a good deal of sense for both teams, as the Dubs don’t want to pay Baron long-term given his history and Sheed wants out of Detroit. However, the Warriors would optimally accompany this with a few other trades, first being getting Stephen Jackson out (can’t have him and Sheed together…ever) and also ideally moving Billups to another team for a piece. I absolutely love a Sheed/Beans frontcourt, and Baron/Rip/Stuckey would be a nasty trio at the guard slots for the Pistons.

Clippers send Corey Maggette and the 7 pick to Phoenix for Leandro Barbosa and the 15 pick.

-I’ve never valued Barbosa much as a player. He isn’t particularly good defensively, can’t run the point, and basically only has one speed. in the NBA, one of the things that makes a point guard or shooting guard great is the ability to change speeds. Chris Paul is a fantastic example of that, but Barbosa is atrocious in this category. But off the bench, he’s definitely worth having. He could fit well alongside Shaun Livingston, but no one knows just yet how his contract will shake out. Maggette is a great player, his has a ridiculous knack for getting to the line and slowing down a game, ending opposing teams runs and frustrating their players. However, he hates the Clippers and wants out, so at least LAC will be getting something back for him. The other thing about the pick trade is that the Clippers might not see much of a difference between the 7 and 15th best players in the draft, so it saves money to get a player you liked anyways significantly lower in the draft.

Overall: I think this trade is good for both teams (esp. Phoenix).

Danny’s take: I really don’t get why the Clippers would want Barbosa for what he is paid. If Livingston were 100%, there’d be an outside chance of it, but they’d be better off to let Mags go (or

get something else for him) and just draft a guard at #7- Westbrook or Gordon could still be around

 

Heat send Mark Blount and the 2nd pick to Seattle for Chris Wilcox and the 4th pick:

-I’m not sure I see the sense in this: who is going to replace Wilcox at center for the Sonics? Granted, Wilcox is better suited as a PF, but none of Seattle’s big stiffs has shown starting potential at the C spot, and they wouldn’t be drafting one with the the 2 pick anyways (and Blount shouldn’t be starting at all either). Instead, the Sonics would have Ridnour, Durant, and Beasley as their starters, with no settled SG and no C. If they stay put they could draft Mayo or Brook Lopez, filling one of their two remaining openings and locking in four starters. The Heat have all the reason in the world to trade out. They don’t seem to have the guts to just take Mayo at 2, even though that is what they should do (Mayo and Wade would be amazing together). Pat Riley can’t stomach Beasley, and since everyone knows this, they basically have no leverage with this pick. On top of it all, Beasley is a terrible fit in their system, which already has Udonis Haslem and Shawn Marion.

Overall: The Heat should trade this pick or suck it up and pick Mayo. The Sonics should hold off on this one, and pick the best player available, since they still need to find at least 2 starters before next season.

Danny’s take: Wilcox has almost no value on the court to the Sonics- it’s not like they’ll sniff contention next season. For them, the only cost is the extra Blount years, which are somewhat significant, though I’m not too sure Free Agents will be clamoring to go to Oklahoma City in a few years. For the Heat, I think it allows them to get a contributor in Wilcox, shed some $, and get a player who is a better fit for them long term (Mayo, Lopez, or Love).

 

Golden State Warriors send Al Harrington to Cleveland for Anderson Varejao and Damon Jones:

-This was a rumor about a week ago, which in NBA Draft terms is about a month ago. I like it a lot because I’m a Warriors fan: Varejao would provide energy and rebounding at a smaller contract than the inconsistent and streaky Al Harrington. Harrington is more versatile and a far better scorer, but the Warriors need someone to provide tough defense against the West’s better big men. From the Cavs’ perspective, this might make some sense: they need a scorer and shooter who can play multiple positions, and Joe Smith can step in at PF with no problems. By the way, Damon Jones is only there to make salaries work. Previous Cavs-Warriors trade rumors have centered around Brendan Wright and the 14 pick for Varejao, but this seems ridiculously steep and Wright may be an asset that Chris Mullin has decided is untouchable.

Overall: I don’t think this exact trade will happen, but the Warriors appear to be looking for a versatile defensive big man so look out for something through the draft or with another team.

Danny’s take: A solid move for the Warriors, and a little bizarre for the Cavs. Harrington is leagues better when he can move and Mike Brown’s team has not run at all. Also, his skillset doesn’t work that well with Big Z, though it is OK with Wallace (even if they’re undersized). For the Dubs, it’s a solid move since they lose some salary long-term and get a contributor while also freeing up some valuable PT for B. Wright.

 

I’d also like to toss in Bill Simmons’ suggestion in his discussion with Chad Ford today: Portland trades Outlaw, Channing Frye, the rights to Fernandez, the No. 13 and $3 million to the Grizzlies for Conley, Brian Cardinal and No. 5.
It gives Memphis some space and guys who can contribute (moving Gay to SG is a good idea too) while Portland gets its PG and a pick that could be any number of guys- I’d lean towards Kevin Love there to shore up the big man rotation, though a guy like Joe Alexander would work there as well. A much better move for the Grizz than the potential trade up to #2 as they keep Mike Miller as trade bait and still cut Brian Cardinal’s contract while getting real talent in return.

 

Phoenix trades Leandro Barbosa to Portland for Martell Webster and the 13th pick.

I don’t think Barbosa is worth either piece the Blazers are sending back in this rumored deal, so needless to say, I don’t like it very much at all.

Danny’s take: The Blazers shouldn’t eat their valuable cap space for a guy like Barbosa- they can get a decent FA looking for a title next offseason.

 

Phoenix trades Boris Diaw to Toronto for the 17th pick and TJ Ford.

If the Toronto/Indiana deal is dead as rumored, this might make some sense for a Toronto team desperate to unload TJ Ford. Though it doesn’t bring Phoenix any more defense, it does at least provide a backup to Steve Nash, which at this point is crucial for the Suns. Toronto could use another competent big man, and Diaw is a good passer who could help the flow of an often stagnant offense. Again he’s not exactly what the Raptors are looking for in terms of a player to complement the Bosh/Nesterovich tandem, but he will help. Is he good enough to merit throwing in the 17th pick (a player like Robin Lopez, Kosta Koufos, or Roy Hibbert)? Personally, I don’t think so, especially considering that he adds a, extra year of salary to the team’s payroll.

Overall: In my opinion, the Raptors can find a better deal for TJ Ford, but if they’re desperate this isn’t that bad. The 17th pick seems a little steep, though.

We’ll keep adding more thoughts on these and other trades as the draft approaches.

 

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Filed under Danny, DeSagana Diop, Mock Draft, NBA Basketball, Rahim, Sports

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