Too many people are talking poorly about our bigs without truly examining our shortcomings. It is not the front court. At all. It is our wing and pg play. To be fair, our most valuable trade assets are our bigs. And it would be logically consistent to presume that one of those valued assets must be unloaded to bring in comparable talent on the wing or at the pg. Obviously. If we simply trade front court players for more front court players, (1) we are not solving our core problem by moving deck chairs on the Titanic (2) It will almost surely be less of a tandem than Pau/Drew. OKC has Perkins and Ibaka. But…they also have Westbrook/Harden/Durant. Unfortunately for the Thunder, Ibaka will likely be the odd many out with Harden commanding a max or near max contract, unless he accepts below market value to stay. The Spurs are similar in their team makeup. Their strength is shooting and at the wing/backcourt in tandem with Duncan. You get the bulk of your team speed and fast break buckets from the wing and backcourt. Now I would be amenable to trading Drew/Pau IF we got comparable value in the backcourt. In fact, that will be the only way to get there. I would trade Drew for Dwight, but that alone will not improve our squad. In fact, it will likely do the opposite, especially if we were required to send Pau along as well.
To be sure, we were on the right track with the CP3 deal, but we cannot continue to think that trading Dwight for Drew will solve our problems. It most certainly will not. Some were touting a potential Josh Smith deal. Are you kidding me? A trigger happy shooter who can’t shoot. Pau has more talent on a single hair of his scruffy beard than Josh Smith’s whole game. If we want max return for one player, Drew will have to go. Jettisoning Drew would have to net us Dwight. Outside of Howard, we would need a return of an all-star big AND an all-star level wing/pg. That is the only sensible trade management would consider. As I have stated for months now, Pau should have been dealt before the trade deadline in that Houston swap. That seems like a pipe dream at this point with Pau's precipitous decline in play and his diminishing trade value. Scola is arguably more effective than Pau at this point. His jumper is more consistent and he is a rugged banger. His rebounding is decent but not good enough with a per of 6.5 this season, down from over 8 last year and almost nine the year before (8.6). I don't see any reason why he wouldn't be a double-digit rebounder next year, though. Dragic is superior to Sessions by any metric.
This just emphasizes that Sessions is not our pg of the future. He is at best an average starter but more likely a solid backup, which is exactly what he was when we traded for him. Darius Morris will be out of the NBA within three years. He is not an NBA talent. Blake is tough but has no ability to get to the hoop and break down opposing defenses. And he is a poor shooter. I would rather have kept Farmar and Sasha, but that's another story. Honestly, I would rather have had Fisher the way Sessions played. McRoberts should be unloaded in a larger trade if possible. He can't board well enough when confronted with contact.and is simply not a skilled player. Murphy, needless to say, will not be back. Keep Jordan Hill if he can be had for value. Ebanks is a tough call, but depending on what our team looks like, we could keep him for very little. I don't see him developing into much, though. Barnes will not be back. He simply can't shoot consistently and we sorely need that off the bench. Metta could be amnestied, but his grittiness and overall play was pretty good once he got in shape. Again, it depends on the conditions of possibility. But most of our backcourt save Kobe must be overhauled. We need shooting and speed above all else. A potent dose of youth wouldn't hurt. We will be back. Mitch will be very, very busy this Summer exploring trades for our bigs
Reports are surfacing that Dwight still wants out of Orlando, but a serial flip-flopper should not be traded for without unconditional guarantees. I don not think he will end up here, but the fluid landscape of NBA player movement has seen far more surprising transactions and acquisitions. The only other available hall-of-fame talent who is still in their prime seems to be Dwill. That would be an amazing coup, but I haven't seen any indication that it's in the cards. But who saw the Pau deal coming, or the nixed CP3 deal?
Enjoy the rest of the playoffs ladies and gents. Here’s to the dog days of trade rumors and rampant speculation. And to our return to greatness in June. One love.