The Cavs are locked and loaded for a solid run at the championship, a disgruntled former superstar finds a new home (and maybe another one before the day’s up), the Bulls are in an even better position to make a splash this summer and a perennial lump of dead weight now finds himself with 10,000 lakes to drown in. That pretty much sums up all the NBA trade action from Wednesday night into Thursday morning, in what has shaped up to be a trade season that has lived up to expectations so far. Here’s a quick rundown of the fantasy implications.
- Cleveland gets Antawn Jamison from Washington and Sebastian Telfair from L.A.
- Washington gets Zydrunas Ilgauskas, a 2010 first-round draft pick and the rights to Emir Preldzic from Cleveland, and Al Thornton from L.A.
- L.A. gets Drew Gooden from Washington
Jamison’s value takes a hit in Cleveland, though he wasn’t exactly thriving in Washington lately. On a squad that’s as successful and deep as the Cavs, the versatile forward won’t find anywhere near the 17 shots he was launching in Washington so far this season, nor will he play nearly 39 minutes like he was for the Wizards. Expect numbers in the vicinity of 15 points, 1.5 threes, 6.5 rebounds and 1 steal per game going forward. Jamison’s owners should try to sell as high as they can before Mo Williams returns.
J.J. Hickson and Anderson Varejao will now compete for minutes backing up both Jamison and Shaquille O’Neal. This shouldn’t change Varejao’s value much, but Hickson’s stats will take a hit.
Anthony Parker, who was already fairly useless in most fantasy leagues, now becomes this generation’s Bruce Bowen and should only be owned in the deepest of leagues.
LeBron James might see his scoring or rebounding dip slightly when Jamison gets hot every now and then, but his assists could see an uptick. His numbers won’t change much at all.
Ilgauskas will likely seek a buyout and find one. He could end up back with the Cavs with negligible fantasy appeal.
Thornton finds himself with some competition at the SF spot in D.C., with the likes of Josh Howard, Mike Miller and James Singleton already competing for minutes. Miller and Howard could slide over to SG, but Thornton’s value probably remains just about the same as it was in L.A.
Miller and Howard will now find themselves in a more direct fight for minutes, while Nick Young could end up with the short end of the stick in the backcourt.
JaVale McGee finds himself as the starting center for the Wizards and judging from his big line Wednesday night, he should fare just fine in that role. Pick him up immediately if you need help with rebounds and blocks.
Andray Blatche’s stock rises even higher with this deal. With Jamison and Gooden out of town, he’s got the starting PF job locked up for the rest of the season and his own inconsistency is his only enemy at this point. The versatile Blatche should be owned in all leagues.
Gooden might still want a buyout in L.A. but if he doesn’t get or seek one, he should find himself with a decent share of minutes for the Clippers and could be relevant again. The values of Craig Smith and DeAndre Jordan depend on Gooden’s status.
Tracy McGrady has finally found his way out of Houston, but his final destination has yet to be determined. The Rockets agreed to a deal in principle to send McGrady, Carl Landry and Joey Dorsey to the Sacramento Kings, for Kevin Martin, Sergio Rodriguez, Hilton Armstrong and Kenny Thomas. However, McGrady could still find his way to the New York Knicks after all is said and done.
As it stands now, Martin finds himself in a nice situation in Houston, though his scoring could take a hit on some nights. The good news is that his field goal percentage could improve. Averages of around 19 points, 2 threes, 4 rebounds, 2 assists and 1 steal per game sound reasonable. He also spreads the floor for his Rockets teammates, which could mean more open threes and better overall looks at the basket.
Trevor Ariza will probably get pushed to the SF spot, which is more familiar to him. Expect his numbers to remain mostly intact, with the potential for better shooting from the field thanks to Martin’s presence.
Aaron Brooks now has an explosive scoring threat to play alongside in the backcourt and will see fewer than the 16 shots per game he’s been taking so far. His scoring will dip, but he might dish out another assist or two in most games.
Shane Battier could come off the bench for the Rockets, unless he gets moved to the PF spot. Since his fantasy value doesn’t come from his scoring, his value remains relatively the same.
T-Mac is still not a lock to stay in Sac-town, but if he does his role is very questionable. The Kings are clearly in a youth movement and will want to give as much playing time to their young guns as possible. If he ends up in New York, which is very possible, he’ll likely have decent value so long as his body holds up. Keep an eye on how this all ends.
Tyreke Evans, Omri Casspi and a healthy Francisco Garcia now find themselves with more minutes, shots and touches going forward, which should help their fantasy values.
Landry should continue to play very efficient basketball in Sacramento, but will compete for minutes with Jason Thompson and Donte Greene.
Monitor how this deal ends, since trading T-Mac to New York will change the Kings’ roster again.
While it lacked the bravado of the deals above, the Chicago Bulls agreed to a deal in principle to send John Salmons to the Milwaukee Bucks for either Kurt Thomas and Francisco Elson, or Hakim Warrick and Joe Alexander. All four of those players have expiring contracts.
Salmons appears to have the starting SG job in hand, which means he should recover much of the value he lost in the first half of the season. Averages of around 16.5 points, 2 threes, 4 rebounds, 3 assists and 1 steal might not be out of the question.
Whoever ends up in Chicago by way of this deal will have minimal appeal unless Tyrus Thomas is dealt. Even then, only Warrick will deserve a look in deeper leagues.
What better way to end this lengthy post than by highlighting this last deal: The New York Knicks sent Darko Milicic and cash to the Minnesota Timberwolves for Brian Cardinal, who will likely be waived in preparation of a deal that would send Nate Robinson to the Celtics.
Is the funniest part of the above sentence “and cash”? Yes. Does this deal matter for fantasy owners? Not unless you’re in a 30-team league. But it’s time to consider the possibility that this could be the very last time Darko manages to sneak into a fantasy basketball post. We can only hope.
Throughout the season, be sure to leave your questions, comments, concerns, trade offers, roster problems and more in the comments below.
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