As has been the case many times over, there was a great deal of hype leading to and surrounding the 2013 NBA trade deadline. Each day emerged new rumors, articles, podcasts, and endless tweets about the latest scuttlebutt. And follow many years’ trends, the hype far outweighed the actual substantive deals that went through.
Many of the names bandied about the past two months remained with their teams. These names include Dwight Howard, Josh Smith, Kevin Garnett, Pau Gasol, Paul Piece, Rajon Rondo, Carlos Boozer, Anderson Varajeo, Eric Gordon, Danny Granger, Eric Bledsoe, Kris Humphries, Ben Gordon, Monta Ellis, Brandon Jennings, Derrick Williams, Luke Ridnour, DeJuan Blair, Andrea Bargnani, Evan Turner, Marcin Gortat, and Tyreke Evans.
While it may have proved disappointing for the national media, as well as those who were clicking refresh on their Twitter time lines yesterday, there were still some moves made, some impactful. Here’s my quick assessment on said transactions, including a bit on how it might affect the Utah Jazz now and moving forward.
The Sacramento Kings trade forwards Thomas Robinson and Tyler Honeycutt and Francisco Garcia to the Houston Rockets for forward Patrick Patterson, guard Toney Douglas, and center Cole Aldrich
Analysis: Daryl Morey is one of the most proactive, forward-thinking GMs in the business, and it showed once again in this move. He knows when to take advantage of a situation. With the cloud of uncertainty hanging over the Kings, along with the fact that Robinson (4.8 ppg, 4.7 rpg) has struggled to find his place thus far, Morey jumped in and made it happen. He gave up two solid rotation players in Patterson and Douglas, but when you have a chance to acquire a high lottery pick, you do it. In reality, it’s a classic low-risk, high-reward move.
It is hard to understand Sacramento’s Geoff Petrie. The general thinking was that, given their current situation, they would be quiet observers this trade season. This move came out of nowhere. While Patterson (11.6 ppg, 52% FGs, 4.7 rpg) is a great role player and provides more than Robinson does right now, there is little comparison when it comes to upside. And Douglas (8.1 ppg on 39.5% FGs, 1.9 apg) adds yet another individual to the Kings’ bizarre mix of guards (Evans, Isaiah Thomas, Marcus Thornton, Jimmer Fredette, Aaron Brooks).
How it affects the Jazz: Houston continues to be the aggressors in shaping their team. During last year’s NBA Draft, the Rockets were making so many deals that it was hard to see where they were going with this. Needless to say, they’ve struck gold. Their acquisitions of James Harden, Jeremy Lin, Omer Asik, and now Robinson are providing a core to a team on the rise, a team that the Jazz will have to compete over the next several seasons. For this season, this may or may not affect Houston’s Playoff seeding. Moreover, their slots in the Draft.
The Houston Rockets trade forward Marcus Morris to the Phoenix Suns for a 2013 second-round pick
Analysis: Houston had a glut of somewhat mismatched forwards. Given the Robinson move, it made sense to send Morris (8.6 ppg, 38% 3s, 4.1 rpg) away to clear things up a bit, while also providing the youngster with a locale where he will have more opportunity.
He is reunited with twin brother Markieff, which will undoubtedly be the source of numerous articles and features over the next year. He adds a rotation player still on a rookie contract. It would be nice to know what the Phoenix Suns’ vision is. Their roster is unbalanced and it’s difficult to see what they are trying to accomplish.
How it affects the Jazz: Very little. Overall, it appears the Suns will be amongst the Western Conference’s bottom teams for the next little while.
The Phoenix Suns trade point guard Sebastian Telfair to the Toronto Raptors for center Hamed Haddadi and a second-round pick.
Analysis: This is a nice pick-up for Toronto, given that longtime stalwart Jose Calderon now wears a Detroit Pistons jersey. Kyle Lowry is their point guard and Telfair (6.0 ppg, 2.5 apg) will serve as his back-up. He constitutes an improvement over the John Lucas III. He will never live up the hype of many years ago, but while a horrible shooter, Telfair is a decent playmaker.
Haddadi’s big. That’s all I’ve got. Actually, when he’s played, he can be a defensive imposition.
How it affects the Jazz: Same as above.
The Atlanta Hawks trade shooting guard Anthony Morrow to the Dallas Mavericks for guard Dahntay Jones
Analysis: This seems like a lop-sided deal in favor of the Mavericks. While he had been relegated to the end of the Hawks’ bench, Morrow (5.2 ppg, 40% 3s) is one of the NBA’s purest shooters. With career averages of 11.5 ppg and 42.5% three-point marksmanship, he will automatically bolster Dallas’ perimeter game. He’s also an expiring contract.
While his game was replicated through Lou Williams, John Jenkins, and former Jazz favorite Kyle Korver, it seems like Atlanta settled for this deal. Jones is no longer a defensive stopper and he offers little else.
How it affects the Jazz: The Mavs are 4 ½ games outside the Playoffs, but they could have a solid finish to the season. Morrow adds a talented shooter to the mix. Add in the formidable Dirk Nowitzki, and you never know…
The Washington Wizards trade guard Jordan Crawford for guard Leandro Barbosa and center Jason Collins
Analysis: Another seemingly one-sided move. Crawford (13.2 ppg, 3.7 apg, 3.1 rpg) has his faults: shot selection, not lacking in confidence, etc. But the bottom line: he is talented, can score, is a better playmaker than people think, and is only 24 years old. He is high talent at a low cost, still on his own rookie pact. Given Rondo’s absence, this adds some much-needed punch. All Boston had to give up was a guy out the rest of the season and Jarron Collins’ longer-lasting brother.
Washington, Washington, Washington—one of the NBA’s most perplexing franchises.
How it affects the Jazz: Boston’s first-round pick currently falls around where the Jazz’s two picks reside. Keep an eye on that.
The Oklahoma City Thunder trade point guard Eric Maynor to the Portland Trailblazers for a trade exception
Analysis: Maynor has had his moments in OKC, but with the recent emergence of Reggie Jackson, the Thunder had less need for him. The Blazers, who sport perhaps the weakest bench in the NBA, adds a solid player, and they obtained him for a song. Maynor (2.8 ppg, 2.0 apg, just 31% FG) has battled some serious injuries, but still has upside as a low-cost, pass-first point guard behind Damian Lillard.
How it affects the Jazz: Portland, thanks the Rookie of the Year shoo-in Lillard, has overachieved all season. They are sitting at the ninth seed, and while they most likely will fall short of the postseason, this moves makes it a bit more interesting, especially with the Lakers also on the outside looking in.
The New York Knicks trade swingman Ronnie Brewer to the Oklahoma City Thunder for a second-round pick
Analysis: The Thunder essentially traded Maynor for Brewer (3.6 ppg, 2.2 rpg, 37% FG). While he started out the season well, Brewer has struggled since. New York had little need for him. While he won’t help with scoring, Oklahoma City adds a solid defender to their perimeter mix. Along with Thabo Sefolosha, the Thunder now has another body to throw against other swingmen.
How it affects the Jazz: Oklahoma City is one of the teams to bet for the championship. This move was made solely with that goal in mind. It is somewhat sad to see how Brewer’s game has declined since he left the Jazz system.
The Orlando Magic trade guard J.J. Redick, big man Gustavo Ayon, and point guard Ish Smith to the Milwaukee Bucks for forward Tobias Harris, guard Beno Udrih, and guard Doron Lamb
Analysis: This represented the biggest deal of the day. Redick (15.1 ppg, 4.4 apg, 39% 3s) was long-rumored to be on the move, with several teams reportedly clamoring for his services. Few are as deadly from three-point land and Redick is a dramatically improved passer and ball handler. He adds yet another outside threat to the mix of Jennings, Ellis, Ersan Ilyasova, and Mike Dunleavy. His pending free agency is a concern, as he is rumored to be looking for a four-year, $40 million contract. It will be interesting to see how the Bucks approach this offseason. In the meantime, the Bucks appear to be firmly entrenched in the eighth Playoff spot, but Redick could propel them to the seventh.
The Magic are in full blown rebuilding. Udrih is an expiring contract who can provide them good minutes behind Jameer Nelson. Harris is a talented piece whose acquisition could pay rich dividends on a team looking for talent. Lamb is a shooter.
How it affects the Jazz: Redick’s next contract is something to watch, as it will shape the market for Gordon Hayward. They are a team whose final record could affect Utah’s two draft picks.
There were some other minor moves (Jeremy Tyler to Atlanta; Charles Jenkins to Philadelphia; Dexter Pittman to Memphis, and a swap of Josh McRoberts and Hakim Warrick by Orlando and Charlotte).
Now, it is time to sit back and watch how things unfold over the next two months, as the Playoff race gets more serious and heated. Beyond that, the NBA Draft presents the start of the next trading season. Don’t be surprised if some big names, including those mentioned this week, are moved then.