Friday, February 21, 2014

NBA Trade Deadline Grades and Analysis

by: Micah Sokolsky

The All-Star break has come and gone and the NBA has resumed its daily schedule….HOLD UP!! Thursday, February 20, 2014 at 3:00 pm EST marked the trade deadline. For the past forty-eight hours, every General Manager of every team has managed to sleep for no more than five minutes in order to try and work a trade to improve their team for a playoff push or has dumped extra salaries to get under the cap for future free agency. Sometimes, fans do not know the story behind many deals: fan favorites are traded, franchise players are dealt, and the blockbuster multi-team deals happen. However, this year did not have any blockbuster deals (no deals similar to Ray Allen for Gary Payton, or Rasheed Wallace going to Detroit), but there were some interesting pieces moving around. Here is a list of some of my winners, losers, surprises, and disappointments from the 2014 trade deadline:


  1. Charlotte Bobcats—The Bobcats acquired Gary Neal and Luke Ridnour from the Milwaukee Bucks for Ramon Sessions and Jeff Adrien.  The Cats are on the cusp of their second playoff birth in franchise history and their first since 2009-10.  The addition of two veteran guards with playoff experience is great for such a young lineup with barely any playoff statistics.  A veteran presence, along with Al Jefferson up front and the emergence of young guards Kemba Walker and Gerald Henderson, Neal and Ridnour can help lead the Bobcats back to the playoffs, even with a sub-.500 record.
  2. Denver Nuggets—The Nuggets have made my winner list for one reason:  Andre Miller is no longer part of the team.  It has been a rough year for Denver after being the third seed in a strong Western Conference and being bounced early in the playoffs, this year has been the opposite.  It was obvious from the beginning that coach Brian Shaw did not see eye-to-eye with Miller, and the veteran point guard wanted to be dealt.  Denver does not have a bad lineup, so if they can begin to play like a team (they are only eight games out of the number eight seed in the West), and with the addition of sharpshooter Aaron Brooks from the Houston Rockets, the Nuggets can only improve.  Will they sneak into the playoffs?  Very unlikely with the strength of the Western Conference this year, but I would not put it past them to finish with a winning record and make some noise toward the end of the season.
  3. Golden State Warriors—Being a San Francisco native, I do have a little bias in putting the Warriors as my final at the deadline.  The Warriors acquired veteran point guard Steve Blake from the LA Lakers for young benchwarmers Kent Bazemore and Marshawn Brooks.  LA is looking to unload salary and possibly build for the future (post-Kobe Bryant…whenever that may come), so allowing two young guards, with promise, a chance to play and further their development, is a win-win for both parties.  For the Warriors, Steph Curry has been playing too many minutes.  Blake can easily fill in for Curry at point and run an offense.  The Warriors signed Toney Douglas over the summer (who failed) and tried Jordan Crawford at point, but he is better as a shooting guard.  Now, Golden State has a veteran backup who coach Mark Jackson can trust coning off the bench.
Honorable Mentions: LA Clippers, Brooklyn Nets


  1. Philadelphia 76ers—To all of you 76ers “fans” out there who are thinking, Micah, the Sixers are winners because they are in ‘Tank for Wiggins’ mode, that does not mean they should be winners.  Evan Turner was just coming into his own after years of disappointment as a second overall pick and ruining the development of Lavoy Allen as he grows as a role player.  Yes, Philly unloaded two hefty contracts in Turner and Spencer Hawes, but they are putting their team into an even deeper hole for the future.  Danny Granger is no longer the player he once was (which is a real shame), and will likely be miserable.  Granger is not going to be in the same situation as Andrew Bynum and will not be a team cancer, but his career perhaps has come to die in the City of Brotherly Love.
  2. Cleveland Cavaliers—So much was to be made of the Cavs this year.  They have an up-and-coming superstar in Kyrie Irving and had a good nucleus as a starting lineup.  They added depth with Jarrett Jack in the offseason and Luol Deng a few weeks ago (Bynum did not work out, but that is beside the point).  The addition of Hawes (a large contract and un-athletic big man) does not give me trust that this team will make the playoffs.  A trade for Glen “Big Baby” Davis from Orlando or Enes Kanter from the Jazz may have been a better option, and giving the young Tyler Zeller a chance to prove to everyone he can play.
  3. Sacramento Kings—Whatever the Kings try to put together generally does not work (hence why they sit in the cellar of the Western Conference).  The Kings made trades like they are a playoff contender.  Jason Terry can provide veteran leadership and championship experience, but does not fit well with a team in the bottom of the barrel.  Every year, I think the Kings are going on the right path by letting their team gel a bit and acquiring some big names, but the years consistently end in disappointment.
Honorable Losers: Detroit Pistons, New York Knicks, Minnesota Timberwolves


  1. Indiana Pacers—Danny Granger had been the face of the Pacers’ franchise for the past five years, but is now gone.  This trade was to add more depth to an already deep bench, while Turner and Allen are still getting better each day.  Turner is versatile, but is not quite the athlete Granger is (or used to be prior to his major knee injury).  Everything seems to be clicking for Indiana, so it was a bit of a shock that they made that sort of volume on deadline day.
Honorable Mentions: Portland Trailblazers, Chicago Bulls


  1. Dallas Mavericks/Memphis Grizzlies—Each team is on the fringe of making the playoffs.  Unfortunately, if they were in the Eastern Conference, both would be the third seed…pretty embarrassing!  However, Dallas is the eighth seed and Memphis the ninth, and each are separated by only one game.  Neither team made an addition to their lineup.  Each team could have used some depth to their squad with the addition of another role player, but both remained stagnant.  With Dirk on the downside of his career, Dallas could use another scorer off the bench.  Vince Carter is an old man in the league and Wayne Ellington and Devin Harris are not energetic scorers.  Memphis needs more production from the small forward position, because Tayshaun Prince is past his prime and James Johnson (while he may be averaging over ten points per game in the month of February) is not doing much off the bench.  A player like Tobias Harris would be an upgrade from off the bench.  
Honorable Disappointment: Houston Rockets
Micah Sokolsky is a Pre-Junior Sport Management major at Drexel University with minors in Spanish and Business.  Micah hails from San Francisco, CA and was a participant on Drexel Sport Management’s College Sport Research Institute (CSRI) team last year in Chapel Hill, North Carolina in 2013.  Micah completed his first co-op with the Camden Riversharks minor league baseball team in their Marketing and Promotions department.  A member of the Alpha Epsilon Pi Fraternity, Micah is involved on campus as the Athletics Chairman for the Inter-Fraternity Council and as a Resident Assistant in Race Hall. Connect with Micah on LinkedIn.

1 comment:

  1. It up coming is always to become as well as gain some fundamental equipment which may be marketed to the people which are usually quickly. Acquiring as well as making after that offering over and over again for any minor permit the gambler generates sizeable Players income, that she can also add in order to his or her Runescape financial records. The money earned coming from promoting simple equipment enable you to obtain at least 2 weaponry, which may be needed for killing devils. With this phase, the enjoyment to the video game has already been peaking, and at period, the concept of one more making possibility.

    Buy Runescape 3 Gold

    Cheap Runescape 3 Gold