What can you say about the last week and all the player movement leading up to yesterdays trade deadline? This was truly one of the busiest trade deadline day (week) in a very long time. Just another reason why to love the NBA! Some teams positioning themselves for a playoff run, others for a championship run and others continue the rebuild, looking towards the future.
Here’s a recap of who/what teams acquired and the winners…
Los Angeles Clippers: Norman Powell and Robert Covington
Portland Trail Blazers: Eric Bledsoe, Justise Winslow, Keon Johnson and a future second-round pick
Winner: Los Angeles! Adding another wing scorer in Powell and a grinder in Covington, these players will bolster the rotation for the Clippers and will compliment Kawhai & PG. Depending on how the rest of this year goes with injuries to the core, this move may be set up for next season.
Cleveland Cavaliers: Caris LeVert
Indiana Pacers: 2022 first-round pick (lottery protected), 2022 second-round pick and a 2027 second-round pick
Winner: Cleveland! The surprise team of this season just added a much needed scorer to their offence.
New Orleans Pelicans: CJ McCollum, Larry Nance Jr. and Tony Snell
Portland Trail Blazers: Josh Hart, Thomas Satoransky, Nickeil Alexander-Walker, Did Louzada and a 2022 first-round pick (protected) and two second-round picks
Winner: New Orleans! Adding a veteran scorer with a high basketball IQ in CJ is brilliant. Pelicans trying to make the playoffs this year, however this move is also one set for next season when Zion returns. The starting five for the Pelicans is very impressive.
Indiana Pacers: Tyrese Haliburton, Buddy Hield and Tristan Thompson
Sacramento Kings: Domantas Sabonis, Jeremy Lamb, Justin Holiday and a 2027 seond-round pick
Winner: Sacramento! This is a tough one as Indiana is building towards the future and Haliburton is going to be an future all-star. While the Kings seem to always seem to be rebuilding, adding Sabonis is a tremendous pick up. Adding him to the core of Fox, Barnes, Mitchell and Holmes should be the start of a progressed rebuild.
Utah Jazz: Nickeil Alexander-Walker and Juancho Hernangomez
San Antonio Spurs: Thomas Satoransky and a second-round pick
Portland Trail Blazers: Joe Ingles, Elijah Hughes and a second-round pick
Winner: Utah! Alexander-Walker is a very good young player with a lot of upside. Should fit quite well with Jazz.
Miami Heat: 2026 second-round pick
Oklahoma City: KZ Okpala
Milwaukee Bucks: Serge Ibaka, two future second-round picks and cash considerations
Sacramento Kings: Donte DiVincenzo, Trey Lyles, Josh Jackson
Los Angeles Clippers: Rodney Hood and Semi Ojeleye
Detroit Pistons: Marvin Bagley III
Winner: Milwaukee! This a fantastic move by the Bucks to add Ibaka to the mix. He brings size, scoring (although he won’t be counted on as a top three point man) and can also stretch the floor/spacing. Inserting him to the starting line-up will definitely cause problems for opposing teams. The Bucks have their eyes set for a possible repeat.
Toronto Raptors: Thaddeus Young, Drew Eubanks and a 2022 second-round pick
San Antonio Spurs: Goran Dragic and a future first round pick (lottery protected)
Winner: Toronto! Adding another big in Young who can play the four and some five, will definitely bolster some much needed productivity from the bench and ease some playing time for the starting five.
Boston Celtics: Future second-round pick
Orlando Magic: P.J. Dozier, Bol Bol, a futre second-round pick and cash considerations
Brooklyn Nets: Ben Simmons, Seth Curry, Andre Drummond, a 2022 first-round pick and a 2027 first-round pick
Philadelphia 76ers: James Harden and Paul Milsap
Winner: Both! There’s not many times when one can say a trade makes sense for both Teams. I do give the slight edge to Brooklyn as they’ve added Simons who will be a better fit along side KD, Kyrie and the Nets. While he’s not the greatest shooter (let’s hope Coach Nash, along with his new teammates, can help him in this department), his defense is what sets him apart and has made him an all-star. Playing all five positions should also be an advantage for the team when playing different line-ups. Adding Seth Curry who’s an incredible shooter with high basketball IQ, along with the rebound machine that’s Andre Drummond, to round out the veterans and youngsters, the Nets have put themselves in a good position. to cause some damage in the playoffs (once KD is back from his injury after the all-star break and once Kyrie is able to play full-time which should be in the Spring when state and federal policies are planned to change). As for the Sixers, they have about a two-three year window where they have to take advantage of Harden’s scoring and Embiid’s MVP type play.
Boston Celtics: Derrick White
San Antonio Spurs: Josh Richardson, Romeo Langford, a 2022 first-round pick and the swap rights on a 2020 first-round pick
Winner: Boston! What a brilliant move by the Celtics! White is a very good player and will fit nicely with Tatum, Brown and Team. He can be the starting point guard, back up point guard, or at times play in a small back court.
Phoenix Suns: Torrey Craig
Indiana Pacers: Jalen Smith and a future second-round pick
Winner: Phoenix! Adding depth for a championship run.
Charlotte Hornets: Montrezl Harrell
Washington Wizards: Ish Smith and Vernon Carey Jr.
Washington Wizards: Kristaps Porzingis and a future second-round pick
Dallas Mavericks: Spencer Dinwidie and Davis Bertans
Winner: Dallas! Tough one to call, however I think Dinwidie will have a bigger impact with the Mavericks than Porzingis will have with the Wizards. Luka and Team get another floor general who can score and facilitate during the game. In the fourth, Luka will always take the lead, however this gives him another person to assist in crunch time. As for Porzingis, I hope this is another piece that helps Beal and the updated roster.
Boston Celtics: Daniel Theis
Houston Rockets: Dennis Schroder, Enes Freedom and Bruon Fernando
Winner: Boston! Another great team move by the Celtics. Adding one of their own recent former players who understands the system and role.
Phoenix Suns: Aaron Holiday
Washington Wizards: Cash considerations
Winner: Phoenix! Once again, adding another piece for a championship run… look out for the Suns!
NOTE: Now that the deadline is done, let’s see what transpires in the buyout market. Teams making a playoff push, or teams that didn’t/couldn’t make any trades will definitely make some moves.