Anemic is a good way to describe the Washington Wizards’ offensive rating which comes in last in league rankings. But if the Wizards’ ability to fill a bucket with a ball is pulseless, the NBA trade deadline was as lifeless as Shaquille O’Neal’s sports commentary.
There was no blockbuster deal, and most swaps involved players who only basketball obsessives would recognize. No trade, except maybe Ronnie Brewer’s journey to OKC, will most likely raise any team’s championship stock. For a quick analysis of the trade landscape, look no further than our Winners And Losers At the NBA Trade Deadline piece. But if your heart beats for a center-of-the-earth deep breakdown, then you’ve come to the right place.
Here are the eight trades, in all their lukewarm glory, with some Sports Jerks analysis to spice up the tasteless porridge.
Redick Becomes A Buck, Josh Smith Nowhere to Be Seen
Surprisingly, the Milwaukee Bucks were the team that came closest to nabbing Josh Smith from Atlanta. A Smith, Jennings, Sanders, and Redick frontline (Monta Ellis would have most likely been dealt to the ATL) could have decimated teams, but instead the Bucks will have to settle for a very good player and team chemistry piece in J.J.
Redick is having a stupendous season, putting up 15.1 PPG (on a 58.5 true shooting percentage), 4.4 APG, and 2.4 RPG. The space he opens up with his sniper vision, should benefit the run-and-cut players that Jennings and Ellis are, and which they’ve struggled to be (as evidenced by their field goal percentages) because of a lack of three-point shooting. Ayon might potentially be lost in Milwaukee’s deep frontcourt, but is a stingy defender and can pass very well for his size.
The Magic go home with two very young players with high potential in Tobias Harris and Doron Lamb. Players that can help in the Orlando rebuilding process which will surely include Andrew Nicholson and human tank Nikola Vucevic.
They Steal Bases In Baseball, Top-5 Picks In Basketball
Other than the Redick trade, this might prove to be the most attention-grabbing exchange in an otherwise tepid market. We tell you why Sacramento might have bungled this one here.
OKC Ups Their Championship Caliber
Oklahoma City Thunder receive Ronnie Brewer / New York Knicks receive 2nd Round Pick
For a while now, OKC has been the real black mamba, striking with a quiet lethality that landed them Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, James Harden, and Serge Ibaka in consecutive drafts. Think about that for a minute.
They’ve now struck again, landing Ronnie Brewer who can give them another wide-bodied lockdown defender to help Thabo Sefolosha clamp down on LeBron James upon another Finals meetup. New York got a second-round pick, which will improve their plans for their future, as their over-the-hill lineup isn’t going to hold up for another season. The Brewer move will also open up minutes for another NY piece of the future: Iman Shumpert.
Damian Lillard Gets A Breather
Portland Trail Blazers receive Eric Maynor / Oklahoma City Thunder receive rights to Georgios Printezis & $2.2 million trade exception
ROY top candidate, Damian Lillard has exceeded all expectations but he’s certainly no cyborg. With a rail-thin bench and no adequate backup, he’s been averaging 38.5 minutes. Eric Maynor, who is more than an adequate point guard, has career averages of 4.2 PPG, 2.9 APG, and 1.3 RPG. His numbers will rise as Lillard is given more time to rest.
Hooking Dwight Howard
Anthony Morrow is a three-point fiend who has been known to light up a scoreboard for 40-plus points, but he usually clocks in 5.2 PPG, 0.4 APG, 1.1 RPG per contest. Not exactly the building block Mark Cuban needs to revamp a squad to a place where they’ll be able to meet the Heat in another Finals. But Morrow is one of a handful of guys Dwight Howard has expressed interest in playing with, and if anyone’s going to make a franchise move based solely on a hunch, it’ll be Cuban.
Dahntay Jones meanwhile brings a defensive intensity that might make up for times Josh Smith decides to take the night off. It will also help them in the upcoming playoffs.
Telfair Joins Rudy Gay
The Toronto Raptors still haven’t figured out a way to get rid of Andrea Bargnani, but that hasn’t stopped them from making moves before the trade deadline. Even if they’re not very bright ones.
The Raptors gave up Hamed Haddadi and a future pick of a possible young, bright talent for a third-string point. Word is that the Raptors coaching staff isn’t exactly fond of John Lucas III’s shoot-first-and-always point guard mentality, so that might be behind the move. But Telfair isn’t exactly an upgrade, as an undersized, stats-deficient guard.
Second Twins In NBA History
Houston Rockets receive 2nd Round Pick / Phoenix Suns receive Marcus Morris
The Rockets get another bid for a bright future, and the Suns get double vision. Marcus Morris joins his twin brother Markieff in Phoenix, for no apparent reason other than to please the twins.
Magic Keep Dropping Talented Personnel
McRoberts will help the Bobcats’ rebounding woes, but the Magic traded seemingly just for the entertainment factor. Not really sure what Warrick brings to the table for them.
The Celtics Get A Scoring Punch
The Celtics have the sixth best defense in the league, but can be downright atrocious offensively. Jordan Crawford should help some with that for reasons we explore here.
The Heat Make Room On Their Bench
Memphis Grizzlies receive Dexter Pittman & 2nd Round Pick / Miami Heat receive trade exemption and rights to Ricky Sanchez
The Miami Heat were one of maybe two teams who didn’t really need to make a move, and they didn’t. Shipping Pittman to Memphis really only served as a way to free up a spot on their bench, which we explore more of here.