Before I get into any of the trade links, here are a few links on Kobe’s status as of yesterday after the Lakers’ practice. Kobe was interviewed after practice, and when asked if it were a definite no in playing in tomorrow’s game against the Celtics, he responded saying, “right now it’s a no, but if I wake up tomorrow and feel drastically different, I’ll play – but I doubt it.”
Land O’ Lakers also have post-practice interviews from Phil Jackson, Ron Artest, Lamar Odom and Pau Gasol on various topics like Kobe, the trade deadline, tonight’s game against the Celtics and the season beyond. Also, Mark Medina of the Los Angeles Times Lakers Blog has some analysis on Kobe’s post game interviews and what his recovery is looking like:
I had earlier maintained that the situations involving his finger and ankle are different. Though having a fractured finger is far from enjoyable, playing through that injury is technically doable. As far as Bryant’s insistence to play through his ankle before and his decision to take a long-term approach now seems pretty straight forward and doesn’t really need much parsing (though I’ve kind of already done that). The strained tendons and muscles in his left leg has added difficult to the recovery process, with Bryant noting “tendons are a little different; they have their own agendas on what they want to heal.” But his outlook on recovering from injuries appears the same.
Yesterday, there were a few moves by teams either trying to improve, or teams trying to clear cap space for this year’s free agency. The most notable of those trades was Washington sending Antwan Jamison to Cleveland in a three way deal that also included the Clippers.
Cleveland gets: Antwan Jamison, Sebastian Telfair
Washington gets: Cavs 2010 1st round draft pick, Draft Rights to Emir Preldzic, Al Thorton
Los Angeles gets: Drew Gooden
– The Cleveland Plain Dealer gives all of the details of the trade
– Clipper Blog explains what it means for the Clips as far as cap space is concerned
– Cavs: The Blog explain how Jamison is going to be able to help the Cavs offensively (yes, help them) with his ability to spread the floor:
Jamison can shoot. He has to be guarded beyond the three-point line, and is comfortable catching and shooting. Even if he’s not on fire, he’ll provide Shaq with space in the post and Andy space to cut. He’s also crafty off the ball, and should be able to find cuts and angles to receive an interior pass from Shaq or Andy when Antawn dives to the rim. When he gets it near the hoop, he has great patience and can finish from a variety of angles. Jamison’s been in the league for a long time. He knows how to score from everywhere on the court. He’ll be able to make it work on offense in ways that pairings of Shaq/Hickson, Shaq/Andy, or Andy/Hickson weren’t able to.
The Kings and Rockets also made a deal yesterday involving Tracy McGrady and Kevin Martin.
Sacramento gets: Tracy McGrady, Carl Landry, Joey Dorsey and cash considerations
Houston gets: Kevin Martin, Sergio Rodriguez, Kenny Thomas, Hilton Armstrong
– ESPN gives all the details of the trade
– Cowbell Kingdom gives all the details and much, much more:
“And I don’t blame the Kings for doing so, either. Sacramento had to figure out if Evans and Martin could coexist together. The only way to do that was to force the issue and get them to form some chemistry on the court. What happened was the Kings already existing struggles to score inside were amplified because the ball stayed on the perimeter. The Martin-Evans duo needed an inside presence in the post to balance out the attack and open up the perimeter. Unfortunately, they never had that weapon at their disposal and the rest of the team seem to be forgotten too often.
“With Martin’s role becoming less and less defined in the offense over the recent stretch of games, there was some confusion as to what the next step would be. The immediate reaction was to think he’d be traded (especially after the weird sitting out of all but 15 seconds of the fourth quarter on Tuesday night). However, since the Kings were demanding a low post presence and none of the rumored deals seemed to be meeting that criteria, a Kevin Martin deal seemed to be improbable.
“But here we are. Kevin Martin is traded and the Kings received a low post threat that they desperately have been seeking.”
One last notable trade was the Chicago Bulls dumping John Salmons contract on the Milwaukee Bucks.
Chicago gets: Hakim Warrick and Joel Alexander
Milwaukee gets: John Salmons
– Milwaukee Journal Sentinel gives the details of the trade
– By The Horns explains that this trade was purely for cap clearing reasons:
“In the meantime, the Bulls are a little worse.
Don’t get me wrong. Salmons hasn’t had a great season by any stretch of the imagination. But he’s still the team’s second-best three-point shooter and its third-leading scorer. Make that was. I guess it’s time for Devin Brown and Jannero Pargo to step up.
Said Derrick Rose: “Man, that’s crazy thinking about John leaving. He just came here [in a trade with the Kings on Feb. 18, 2009]. But, it’s the NBA. If he does get traded we’ll definitely miss him, but [the season] must continue. … It hurts your team a little bit. Like when you have a game right after [a trade]. But that’s just how the NBA goes.”
There was also a trade between Minnesota and the Knicks where Brian Cardinal and Darko Milicic were swapped and it still remains to be seen if Tracy McGrady will end up in New York or if Amare Stoudemire will end up in Miami. Teams have until Noon PST to make their decisions.
Today, I leave you with a post from Eddie Maisonet, the newest member of SLAMonline.com, who introduced himself by writing a bold piece proclaiming Pau Gasol, not Kobe Bryant, the Lakers’ MVP. Here’s a few lines from the post:
“Sure, Kobe’s more dynamic. He’s going to shoot the game-winners. He’s the poster child for the League. We all know this. If we were talking about the Most Outstanding Player for the Lakers and the NBA, of course Bryant wins this award.
“However, the title is “Most Valuable” and from a value perspective it’s extremely tough to say isn’t more valuable. Plus, who’s to say that Gasol doesn’t make players better? Lamar Odom was almost traded roughly 38 times before Pau got there, however Gasol and Odom (and Bynum to a degree) remind some of the Uncles in our family to a Parish/McHale/Walton ’86 Celtics feel of a frontcourt. Other teams in the NBA have strategically reshaped their teams to beat LA, by adding frontcourt depth in particular.”
Check out the article. Thoughts?
Some updates on today’s trades
As many speculated yesterday, Tracy McGrady wasn’t done moving. The Kings were able to come to terms with the Knicks to complete a three-way deal with the Rockets.
New York gets: Tracy McGrady, Sergio Rodriguez
Houston gets: Kevin Martin, Jared Jeffries, Hilton Armstrong, Jordan Hill, NYK’s 2011 pick, the right to switch picks with NYK in 2012
– NBA Fanhouse tells how Sacramento was able to helm make this a great trade for Houston:
Houston’s role in all of this is interesting, and it’ll be worth following the next few days of explanations to see exactly how this came together. The Rockets had been working with the Knicks on the non-Martin, non-Landry portions of the deal for weeks. It seems as though Houston got tired of waiting and made the deal for Martin about 12 hours early, perhaps putting pressure on New York to give up those picks. It worked. It looks like Sacramento really helped the Rockets here.
– Ball Don’t Lie explains McGrady’s worth for the teams who dealt him:
The deal? In the latest of many permutations, it appears as if Tracy McGrady is heading to New York. An expiring contract, and nothing more, despite the long term outlook they’ve been trying to sell you through the media. The Knicks will no doubt play Tracy this season, but come July, he’s gone. Come July, thanks to the work of Donnie Walsh, most of these Knicks are gone, and they’ll have a real shot at signing two big free agent contracts.
The Knicks were pretty busy today. Not only did they acquire McGrady, they were also involved in a five player deal that sent Nate Robinson to the Celtics in exchange for Eddie House.
Boston gets: Nate Robinson, one other Knicks player not mentioned yet
New York gets: Eddie House, Bill Walker, J.R. Giddens
– ESPN gives the details of the trade.
– Celtics Hub on why bringing in Robinson was the only move the Cs made.
A lot of Celtics fans are going to be disappointed that this is the only deal the C’s have made at the deadline, considering the number of other deals that went down around the league. The truth is, Danny Ainge hands were tied, given the team’s salary concerns for next year (63 million committed to just 6 players) making it tough for the team to absorb any bad contract that would be required in return for receiving any “impact” player the C’s were looking for, as seen in the excerpt above.
The C’s had plenty of expiring contracts to deal besides Ray Allen, but all of those guys were either a) lacking talent that would make them appealing to other teams (Giddens, Walker, Scalabrine, Williams) b) important parts of the team’s rotation (Daniels, TA, House)
There were also a few other minor deals made before the deadline:
– The Chicago Bulls traded Ty Thomas to the Charlotte Bobcats for Acie Law IV and Flip Murray.
– Ronnie Brewer was traded to the Memphis Grizzlies for a protected 2011 pick.
– The Philadelphia 76ers traded Primoz Brezec and Royal Ivey to the Milwaukee Bucks for Jodie Meeks, Francisco Elson and a second round draft pick.
The cavs get Jamison for a first round pick and 30 days rest for Ilgauskas. Sounds like a good trade from Clevelands stand point. Gives them 3 good shooters on the court with James and Shaq.
I also like the trade for Houston, though giving up Landry probably hurts them this year, but if (and that might be as a big of an if as it was for McGrady) Martin stays healthy he is one of the most efficient players in the league.
The STD says
I hope that guy also thinks McHale was the Celts MVP and not Bird, lol
For all the hoopla about Cleveland’s trade, I am fine with the Cav’s getting Jamison. If they are able to get Big Z back also after 30 days, that is the bigger problem. Jamison defensively can be exploited. The Twin Obelisks lineup that the Cavs threw at the Lakers befuddled both Bynum and Pau. I would be more worried if and when the Wizards buyout Big Z. As for now, let’s see how this all plays out on the court. Not having that backup center for Shaq will be exploited by teams in the playoffs, especially by the Magic.
I think his argument that Pau is more valuable has some merit. The ball movement from the post is extremely important for the system we run. Not saying that Kobe isn’t important. In fact, if Kobe went to the early season Kobe who played in the post a lot, he would definitely be more important.
But for triangle sake, he’s definitely more valuable then a perimeter Kobe bryant.
And no, does not mean i am hating on kobe. I do not think we will win without Kobe.
The STD says
Gasol retiring tomorrow to pursue acting career = “CRAP. Well, we’re no longer the favorites but I guess we can still go to war with a Bynum/Odom/Artest front court and see what happens”
Kobe retiring tomorrow to pursue acting career = “CRAP. Well, we’re no longer the favorites but I guess we can still go to war with a Shannon/Sasha/Fish/Farmar backco- OH WHO ARE WE KIDDING CANCEL THE SEASON.”
I would have never imagined the Wizards and Cavs being involved in such a lopsided deal. These two teams are only a few years removed from a few heated/bitter playoff series. That’s usually a situation that limits a great deal of Front Office chatter. I couldn’t imagine the Lakers/Kings dealing with each other (to this day) and their “rivalry” has been irrelevant for years now. Mavs/Lakers don’t have a rivarly either, but it’s clear that both teams refuse to deal with each other because they are in conference (and both better than average teams).
This trade seems to have bucked the trend of how/where/and to whom you trade. I guess when your the Wizards and your team implodes and a fire sale is declared, everything must go!
Matt R. says
Rumor has it that the Kings may be buying out McGrady once the deal is finalized, and that if that happens, his agent is going to be trying to get him picked up by a title contender to come off of the bench. The two teams he (supposedly) mentioned were the Lakers and Cavs.
Tyrus Thomas to the Bobcats for Acie Law, Flip Murray, and a pick.
Seems like the Bulls are hellbent on amassing an entire team full of undersized combo guards…
T. Rogers says
5) – It’s all about money. So many teams are bleeding cash they couldn’t care less about rivalries. In the grand scheme of things that is not good for the game. These kinds of things are what make me believe a prolonged lockout is a real possibility. The financial model of the NBA is broken.
Just think back a decade. Would the Sacramento Kings have ever traded one of their best players to the Lakers? Not over Vlade Divac’s flopping body. It just shows how things have changed.
T. Rogers says
6) – McGrady has never been a defensive player. But I would take him for a small amount of cash. If he can still hit his shots he could help out. Let him sit in the corner of the baseline Triangle and hit that short corner three the way Vlad used to. The Lakers are missing that right now.
I personally see no harm in picking up T-Mac if he wants to play for the minimum and is OK being a 6th man. There are a lot of reasons why, but this talk is premature and I won’t get into it yet. Let’s just hope Sac does buy him out.
I’ve said many times we underestimate how valuable Pau is to the team. That said, I think the article is a bit of a joke. No real stats aside from record, nothing average fans didn’t know. Poorly written up, with a shaky foundation, in my opinion.
Let’s not turn this into a Kobe vs Pau argument. Let’s be happy the 2 are on our time and we get to enjoy both doin’ work together.
Not to rain on the T-Mac parade but…
He’s going to the Knicks. Sacramento and Houston found a way to 3-team it. I think the Knicks are going to keep him.
Team. I should proofread.
Yeah I think the Knicks will keep him. Just not our trading season, I guess.
If a team reaches a buyout with a player, is that player’s contract wiped from that team’s cap? If so, then the Knicks may still have reason to let McGrady go.
Underrated pickup in Rodriguez. If anything can do something with him, it’s D’Antoni.
Thank god. we can put the t mac talk to rest.
sperm whale says
My memory of the Cavs games are hazy. I remember that Gasol/Bynum didn’t do well when matched up against Shaq/Z. How did the front-line fare when Odom was in the game (I’d imagine that Brown would sub in Varejao to counter)?
The reason J makes the Cavs lethal is because they continue to be a bad match up for the Lakers. If Z does not come back to Cleveland (i.e., he’s not released), then we have an edge in the possibility that Shaq will not be able to dominate/slow Drew for an entire 7 game series. However, this assumes Drew stays out of foul trouble. If Z is released and resigned, then our only hope is that Drew has the mental fortitude and skill to be a dominating force against Shaq and Z in a 7 game series. This is worry some as Drew has been very inconsistent when matched up against “A” quality competition.
Don’t know how much validity is to this rumor, but:
“League sources tell HOOPSWORLD that the Los Angeles Lakers and Toronto Raptors are discussing a last minute deal that would swap Sasha Vujacic for Marcus Banks.”
does not make much sense?
There were reports about a Sasha/Banks swap early in January, I wouldn’t be surprised if those talks picked back up. Banks is an upgrade as far as on ball defenders go for the Lakers current PGs. The trade could also free up about $1 million in cap space, which isn’t much as far as the Lakers are concerned, but it’s something.
Just getting rid of Sasha makes all the sense in the world, he’s pathetic at best.
Can we get a new post up called “Missing Kurt’s FB&G”?
We’re playing Boston… and still no preview?
The STD says
Mitch has been targeting Marcus Banks for like years and years
And apparently still is even after he’s failed everywhere he’s been
Say what you will about Mitch but the guy is persistent
the other stephen says
20. be patient, man. it took kurt time to put up previews too. darius has been posting like a madman.
I might be bias being a Kobe fan, but i pretty sure Lamar and Bynum played pretty well before Bynum went down with the knee injury even before Gasol become a Lakers. So i don’t see how Gasol made those two players better. We do get more win though because of the twin towers. that i’m going to admit.
the other stephen says
and about marcus banks, i’m not sure what mitch sees in him…
different player with an arguably worse set of problems that comes with only about a million in savings.
in another time, and at a cheaper price, i would’ve liked to get jarrett jack, but that doesn’t mean anything.
Against the Lakers they would play Jamison at SF and move Lebron to SG. Jamison will play SF or PF depending on the matchups.
Craig W. says
The Cleveland trade was more about matching up against Orlando than about the Lakers. The Lakers are just a possible plus for them. However, they had to get out of the East and this makes that more likely.
Tonight’s matchup is interesting for the Lakers sans Kobe. This is the first team we’ve played since losing Kobe that has a frontcourt that can hang with ours.
Chris J says
If the Banks/Vujacic deal is real, it means two things for L.A.
A) Every dollar counts, even if the salary costs saved are “only” $1 million.
B) Mitch/Phil have completely given up hope that Sasha can turn things around. Because make no mistake about it, Marcus Banks offers nothing of value to the Lakers on the court.
And re: – 2
There were times back in the day when many could have realistically argued that McHale was more important to the Celtics than Bird, especially later in their careers as injuries slowed Bird’s play.
McHale even finished fourth in MVP voting in 1987, so he wasn’t so far removed from Bird on the greatness scale, though Larry has since been annointed as one of the 80s’ “Big Three” along with Magic and Jordan.
Darius has been getting the previews up there around the same time Kurt used to, but now he also does RECAPS, which is awesome (especially for those of us who aren’t able to watch the games). Great job Darius!
In a slightly unrelated topic, has anyone followed Kurt over to NBC? I’ve been a big fan of the writing there so far – a lot of those guys have the same cut through the crap/good sense of humor writing style of Kurt.
Darius has been doing super work!
What the hell is going on?
Ilgauskas for Jamison – with Big Z likely to be waived and re-sign with the Cavaliers?
Eddie “I Can Only Spot Up For 3’s” House for Nate “I win Dunk Competitions Because I’m Short” Robinson?
Kevin Martin for Landry and Larry “I’m Traded Again?” Hughes?
Josh “Everyone Smokes Weed” Howard and Drew “Where My Goatee Go?” Gooden for Caron “Tough Juice” Butler and Brandon Haywood?
Will Popovich clamor for another Trade-Review Committee???
The real world has not been cooperating with me today. If you don’t understand that, too bad. Plus, with today being a major day for the league with the trade deadline, a bit of a delay in a preview for a game that won’t start until almost 8pm is fine by me. If you don’t like the site, feel free to visit others. I won’t miss the whining.
Game preview is up. Let’s get this win.
Every dollar has counted for the Lakers in the near past as well.
Don’t forget last year we gave Chris Mihm away for nothing (2nd round pick from Memphis in the year 2145 or something like that) just to save the luxury tax payment. And the primary motivation for the Vlad Rad for Morrison/ShanWOW swap was to save a couple bucks and because Morrison would expire one year sooner than Rad, saving an extra 8 mil or so. Just because we have a little bit more than other teams doesn’t mean we shouldn’t throw away opportunities to save a buck.
Samy: I am embarrassed for you.
Darius: Excellent response to Samy. You
are doing a fantastic job.
You are doing a great job!!!
Ouch Darius. I am watching what I write from now on. That sounded like what my wife says to be when I ask for dinner. Since she is related to Divic and Serbian I already live a life of fear.
Anyway I am a bit disapointed no deal for a PG. Cavs are better, Mavs are better, Houston is better and the Clips punked us. This is going to be a tough road to a parade this year.
Not liking this game tonight. Saw a story in Bosten paper that warns Celts if they can’t beat Lakers with no Kobe they should pack it in.
Wow – getting chippy here! Darius – why don’t you just ignore the comments like Samy’s or remove them. Your negative response just makes you look just as immature and whinny.
c’mon…Darius’ posts in general have been lengthier and more thorough than Kurt’s. I’m not saying which is better, but just different in style.
If Samy’s post was done with OBVIOUS humor, maybe it would have been easier for Darius to swallow, but it was neither funny nor appropriate.
Darius must be having a busy day because he is usually very patient and not too reactionary. I understand why he would respond like that and I don’t think that makes him look immature nor whiny. Keep up the good work and ignore the whiners and complainers here.
BTW, isn’t it great that when our foes play against each other (DEN v. CLE), no matter who loses, it’s a good day?