The trade deadline buzzer sounded at 3 p.m. ET on Thursday evening, and while Carmelo Anthony, Jimmy Butler and Paul George all stayed put there was still a lot of trade action that went down. Here is a wrap up of all the trades that took place earlier today.
The Philadelphia 76ers traded Nerlens Noel to the Dallas Mavericks for Andrew Bogut, Justin Anderson and a first-round pick. As a lifelong diehard Mavs fan this was amazing news, especially after all the sitting around itching wondering whether or not the Mavs were gonna make any real moves of benefit, this hit me with a sigh of relief. This isn't to say that Nerlens is going to lead Dallas to the promise land (lets be realistic). However he will provide help on the defensive side of the ball, which is his strong suit. No major factor on the offensive side, but his athletic ability has me leading to believe that he will be catching lobs from our guards just as Brandon Wright did for the Mavs during his short tenure. It is a little disappointing to see our young guy Justin Anderson leave us though. He had made promising progression since his rookie season and was just going to keep improving on our team, but there was no questioning moves had to be made. I don't think the departure of Andrew Bogut will hurt Mavs too much, especially since he has been hurt the majority of the season, so overall I applaud this trade by Donnie Nelson and Mark Cuban - it's a win for the Mavericks. The only loss I found in all this was the waiving of Deron Williams who was the one originally in trade talks and not Justin Anderson. The upside for Williams is he was waived so he has the choice of the team he wants to go to, sources say he has his sights set on joining the Cleveland Cavaliers. LeBron has been saying for a while that the Cavaliers were in need of a backup point guard, so if Williams officially signs, I believe James has found what he was looking for and possibly got better than what his options were prior to the deadline.
Another notable trade that was made today was between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Chicago Bulls. The Thunder sent Cameron Payne and Joffery Lauvergne to the Bulls for Doug McDermott, Taj Gibson and a 2018 second round pick. Personally I feel like OKC came out on top with this trade. These acquisitions are something that Russell Westbrook majorly needed - another knock down shooter in McDermott and a force in the paint and on the boards in Taj Gibson. All Thunder lost in this was Cameron Payne who hasn't looked the same since returning from injury, and has never really played a factor in the team's success anyways. OKC was basically handed 2 solid rotation players for a stick of Hubba Bubba. This move could even help the Thunder push to get the 6th seed in the West, not sure how likely it is, but it heightens their chances for sure. “Acquiring McDermott is a big deal. The Thunder place dead-last in wide-open three-point percentage (32.1), and McDermott is draining 43.4 percent of his uncontested threebies. He will feast off Westbrook's passes, and Oklahoma City has the defensive depth elsewhere to play him more than Chicago.”
Russell Westbrook and Cameron Paynes' dancing days are over (hallelujah!). Now Payne can finally focus on playing basketball, but I'm not sure how likely that will be considering he will most likely be the 3rd string point guard…..oh well, at least the dancing is done!
The last trade of real significance was a trade between the Toronto Raptors and Phoenix Suns. As all of us know, they acquired PF Serge Ibaka last week and today they received Suns SF P.J. Tucker.
The Raptors have been making significant moves to improve their ball club in recent weeks adding 2 solid defenders to their team, which that team desperately needed looking at their lacking defense this season. This Raptors team is on a mission to try and knock off Cleveland in the East and make their NBA finals debut. Although if you take a look at last year's playoffs, DeRozan and Kyle Lowry did not perform near as well as they did in the regular season, even though they made it to the conference finals for the first time in team history. Having watched that series intently, the firepower of the backcourt in most of the games was nowhere to be found. Shooting percentages were straight awful and they missed many wide open jumpers they usually knock down with ease. They went 6 games with Cleveland, but took significant point differential losses in this series. If this backcourt in Toronto shows up in the playoffs, it could make life tough for Cleveland. The Celtics look like more of a challenge in the Conference finals than the Raptors for now, but if these trades pan out and their All Star guards show up in the postseason... it could be more interesting than we would expect out East.
Lastly the Atlanta Hawks traded Mike Scott to the Phoenix Suns for cash, Bucks traded Roy Hibbert to the Nuggets for heavily protected 2nd round pick, Nets acquired K.J. McDaniels from the Rockets, and Lakers sent guard Marcelo Huertas to the Rockets in Ennis deal (Huertas was waived). No big names, nor are any of these relevant moves compared to the others. Well, you can argue that McDaniels to the Nets is a plus, but you could say that about any average player being sent to a trash basketball team that does not even have double digit wins!!!! Nets aren't worth me discussing, but it IS worth noting that the Warriors are able to re-sign Andrew Bogut pending that they want to get him back because prior to today they were not in search of any more frontcourt players, but that has changed since the Bogut trade. This is something to keep an eye on in the coming days, as well as what the Mavericks will do with their last 2 open roster spots.
Written by Drew Ivery