The NBA trade deadline came and went, and nothing happened. After names like Josh Smith, Paul Millsap, Carlos Boozer, and Dwight Howard saw their name attached to rumors, fans sadly watched as Jordan Crawford was moved to Boston, Sebastian Telfair swapped to Toronto, and J.J. Redick sent to Milwaukee. The reason? Due to the new, harsher CBA repeater tax, and the value of those first round draft picks, we saw various rumored trades shot down. That sad part about this is that this is just the first year. The trade deadline might be even more boring as teams begin to pay the tax, and lose their exceptions. While teams like Milwaukee, Houston, and Oklahoma City should benefit from their deals, there’s a ton of teams that disappointed me as well, whether it was their reluctance in making a trade, or not making a move at all.
Let’s just look at some of the biggest losers, and why the make the losers list:
Utah Not Moving Millsap Or Jefferson: After being the team of the deadline, Utah ultimately decided to keep both Paul Millsap and Al Jefferson. Both Jefferson and Millsap are expiring contracts, and odds are, both are gone from Utah after this season. The Jazz disappointed me for a couple reasons. The first is that Millsap was thrown into trade rumors, and one, the Paul Millsap-Eric Bledsoe rumor, was very interesting. While I’m not a huge Eric Bledsoe fan, he would’ve been a long term solution at their point guard position. The second reason is this: Al Jefferson, no matter who pays him, will be getting overpaid this summer. Utah could’ve sold someone on Jefferson being the low-post presence they need to rent for the next two months. The third reason? The Jazz will have to pay Derrick Favors this offseason, and even though his PER 36 numbers are spectacular (15.4 points and 10.2 rebounds), I still would like to see him in large chunks of minutes.
Indiana Not Trading For J.J. Redick: Indiana wasn’t in need of J.J. Redick, but to help that offense, I thought he would’ve been one of the best additions Indiana could’ve made. The Pacers are in the bottom five in offensive efficiency, but they also rank 17th in three-point percentage, and ranked 24th in field goal percentage from 10 feet out (Hoopdata.com splits the court into different ranges. Indiana ranks 24th on field goal attempts from 10 to 15 feet, as well as attempts from 16 to 23 feet). While Indiana is waiting for star forward Danny Granger to return, the Pacers needed an efficient shooter who could space the floor when Granger or George eventually sit. The word was: Indiana was hesitant on giving up their 2013 first round pick, and that ended up being the difference in Redick going to Milwaukee, rather than Indiana. Is Redick the main piece Indiana needed to beat Miami? No, but I do think having Redick would’ve increased their chances of pushing it to seven games.
New York Not Trading Iman Shumpert: In the first half of the season, the Knicks heavily relied upon Carmelo Anthony and a barrage of three-pointers for offense. When Yahoo’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that the Phoenix Suns were interested in swapping Jared Dudley for Iman Shumpert, I thought it was a no-brainer for both sides. Apparently, the Knicks didn’t agree. Shumpert, while a young talent, is an unproven shooter, and on a roster where shooting is needed, he often looks out of place when he isn’t hitting jumpers. If the rumored trade was on the table, then the Knicks were fools for not taking it. Jared Dudley is an underrated player in the league, and most importantly, he’s an amazing shooter, currently sporting a true shooting percentage of 59.2. With the Knicks selling the fans on this veteran team, it’s disappointing to see the Knicks not add another piece in Dudley, a player who would’ve fit the three-point shooting mantra, as well as fit perfectly in New York’s lineup where Anthony plays at power forward.
Brooklyn Not Acquiring A Power Forward: In the midst of Brooklyn’s offseason shopping, the Nets added a starting point guard, shooting guard, small forward, and re-signed their star center. The only position that was shunned? Power forward. Sure, Brooklyn opted to re-sign Kris Humphries for two years, 24 million, but quickly into the season, the Nets realized that he wasn’t the answer. After going around the league shopping the package of guard Marshon Brooks, Humphries, and a first found pick, the Nets came up empty, and for better or for worse, this is the Brooklyn Nets team going into the playoffs. It isn’t bad, the Nets are in the 5th spot in the East, but their power forwards are Humphries, Reggie Evans, and Andray Blatche.
Sacramento Giving Up On Thomas Robinson: I just don’t get it. After drafting him fifth overall this past summer, the Sacramento Kings flipped Robinson, along with Tyler Honeycutt and Francisco Garcia, to Houston for Cole Aldrich, Patrick Patterson, and Toney Douglas. If shaving money off the payroll was the goal, then Sacramento accomplished it, but they didn’t need to send off on of their young players to do that. With the team in limbo, we can easily see why they might move on to Seattle after this season; this team is screwed.