We hear all these juicy rumors of big names being shopped around and more times than not, the deals never materialize.
In the days approaching Thursday’s NBA trade deadline, we heard names like Dwight Howard, Blake Griffin and Kevin Love being discussed in mega-trades. Those guys are still with their original teams and guys like Chu Chu Maduabum, who isn’t even employed anywhere in the world right now, were involved in trades.
We breakdown the few trades of note that took place at the trade deadline and the few days before.
Let’s start with a trade that happened early in the week.
This is a three-team trade:
- Charlotte Hornets – Courtney Lee (from Grizzlies)
- Memphis Grizzlies – P.J. Hairston (from Hornets), Chris Andersen and two second-round picks (from Heat
- Miami Heat – Brian Roberts (from Hornets)
This trade basically happened because the Heat wanted to get out from paying luxury tax. Memphis had a surplus of wing players and got a few bench pieces for the playoffs. Lee will be missed by Memphis, but they added another wing later in this trade breakdown.
This Pistons/Magic trade is probably the biggest one that happened this week.
- Detroit Pistons – Tobias Harris
- Orlando Magic – Brandon Jennings and Ersan Ilyasova
I like this trade for both teams. Harris could get the Pistons into the playoffs. They are currently a half-game out of the 8th seed in the East. I also like the trade for the Magic because both Jennings and Ilyasova both played for Orlando coach Scott Skiles in Milwaukee. It gives them some experience that could push themselves into the playoffs as well. Orlando is currently 3 1/2 games out of the 8th seed.
This three-team trade between Cleveland, Portland and Orlando is worth mentioning.
- Cleveland Cavaliers – Channing Frye (from Magic)
- Portland Trail Blazers – Anderson Varejao and conditional first-round pick (from Cavs)
- Orlando Magic – Jared Cunningham (from Cavs) and second-round pick (from Blazers)
This trade gives the Cavs another stretch-four that has range. Trading Varejao away does burn a little for Cavs fans, but it appears that he is getting a buy-out, so a return to Cleveland isn’t out of the question. Jared Cunningham just gives Orlando another shooting guard that can’t shoot.
This upcoming trade is just a ‘get this guy out of town for whatever’ trade.
Phoenix Suns – Kris Humphries, DeJuan Blair and protected first-round pick
Washington Wizards – Markieff Morris
Morris has wanted out of Phoenix since they traded his twin brother to Detroit this offseason. He even threw a towel at his head coach during a game this season. The Suns will probably buy-out both Humphries and Blair. They were in this trade just for the first-round pick, but needed the money to work, so Humphries and Blair were added.
The last trade we will cover stings a little.
- Los Angeles Clippers – Jeff Green
- Memphis Grizzlies – Lance Stephenson and first-round pick
This reason this trade stings is because I’m a Pacers fan. I remember how good Stephenson was on the team. He signed with Charlotte when he hit free agency and hasn’t played nearly as well on either the Hornets or Clippers. Memphis traded away Jeff Green and Courtney Lee, so it appears that Stephenson will mostly backup Matt Barnes and Tony Allen. If Stephenson can defend like he did in Indiana, he should be a nice bench piece for the playoffs.
I don’t want to mention the rest of the mediocre trades that happened this week. They were either trades for random second-round picks or trades that involved rights to players not currently in the league.
Let’s hope next year’s NBA trade deadline will be better…but don’t hold your breath.
Bobby Roberts (otherwise known as Sweetbob) is the creator of ‘America’s White Boy’ and contributor at Project Shanks. His writing has been featured on ESPN’s ‘SportsNation’, Sports Illustrated’s Hot Clicks, Guyspeed, and various other sites. You can follow him on Twitter at @Sweetbob.