As we near the February trade deadline, the NBA’s version of the hot stove is heating up. Here are some trades that NBA teams should consider:
The Knicks Add Defense and a Point Guard, the Lakers lose Young and the Rockets add Depth
Knicks get: Dwight Howard and Jordan Clarkson
Lakers get: an unprotected future Knicks second round pick and Terrence Jones
Rockets get: Robin Lopez, Derrick Williams, Jose Calderon, Nick Young and a protected future first round pick from the Knicks
Why the Knicks do it: It’s clear that the Knicks two areas of need are a point guard and defense. Jordan Clarkson is a great prospect and is already budding as a great point guard. They also need really need defense and Dwight Howard is a 3-time defensive player of the year. The only caveat is giving up more draft picks, but for a player like Howard, it’s worth it.
Why the Lakers do it: They finally dump Nick Young, the largest annoyance the organization has ever had to deal with. They also pull in another young big man to play alongside Julius Randle. D’Angelo Russell performed better while starting at point when Clarkson fell to injury, so losing him may not be the worst thing in the world.
Why the Rockets do it: The Ty Lawson experiment is not working. He is having a career worst year and the explanation has to do with his play style clashing with that of James Harden. The Rockets add a new veteran point guard and a lot of backcourt depth. Dwight Howard never really panned out with the Rockets either and their success after his signing is due to Harden’s excellence.
Pelicans Go Big, Bulls Add Offense
Pelicans get: Joakim Noah and Taj Gibson
Bulls get: Ryan Anderson and Eric Gordon
Why the Pelicans do it: It has been rumored that the Pelicans have been shopping Anderson for months now and they don’t want any chump change in return. Anderson is a great stretch 4 who can ball out all over the court. Eric Gordon has really underperformed since being the key to the Chris Paul trade. The injury bug has taken it’s toll on him, but he still hasn’t played well when healthy. Noah is the defensively minded player Alvin Gentry has needed and Gibson is a valuable bench asset who is strong on both ends of the floor.
Why the Bulls do it: Jimmy Butler can’t score 40 points in every half. Ryan Anderson can score inside and out, which adds a versatile player to the Bulls offensive that they haven’t seen before. Pau Gasol slides to the 5, to allow Anderson to play his stretch 4 role and Butler moves to small forward to get Eric Gordon in the starting lineup. This allows Tony Snell and Nikola Mirotic to add to the already deep bench.
Kings Add Draft Picks, Celtics Score Big
Kings get: the Nets 2016 unprotected first round draft pick, the Clippers 2017 unprotected second round pick, the Heat’s 2020 unprotected second round pick, Jonas Jerebko and David Lee
Celtics get: DeMarcus Cousins and Darren Collison
Why the Kings do it: The Nets are one of the worst teams in the league and there pick has a large chance to be the once in a generational talent, Ben Simmons. If not, it will still be a great pick. They also receive 2 second round picks that are valuable even if they are just trade chips. Lee is a great veteran that will add some maturity to the locker room that Cousins never had. Jerebko adds depth as he can play the 3 or the 4.
Why the Celtics do it: There is no scenario where the Celtics don’t do this deal. Cousins is a superstar who hasn’t even reached his full potential. Collision has proved to be an effective journeyman. This is a steal for the Celtics as they also get to keep 3 of their first round picks this year.