FanPost

Trade Drawer: Blockbuster Edition

Okay here's my shot at how I would fix the Blazers, and help a couple of other teams out as well, including the hated L@kers:

http://games.espn.go.com/nba/tradeMachine?tradeId=7qphrj9

The trade:

Rockets get: Pao Gasol

L@kers get: Ray Felton, Gerald Wallace, Luis Scola, cash

Warriors get: Wes Matthews, draft picks

Blazers get: Kyle Lowry, Monta Ellis, Matt Barnes

The rationale:

Houston really wants Gasol, it's no secret. They tried to trade a package of Scola, Dragic, and Kevin Martin already to get him. I know they don't want to move Lowry, but they have 2 other capable PGs on their roster in Dragic and Flynn, and keeping Martin with Gasol makes a pretty potent inside outside combination. Starting lineup: Dragic, Martin, Parsons/Budinger, Gasol, Dalembert. Better than what they have now. Tough to give up Lowry, but they come out with the best player in the trade, which is where teams generally like to be.

Golden State is high on Klay Thompson. The Ellis/Curry experiment just isn't working. By trading Ellis for Matthews and draft picks, they improve their defense and cap position and get a trade exception, and can then seek to improve their big man rotation through the draft, lopsided trade, or free agency. They also pay less for a starting 2 guard while until Thompson is ready to take over. Starting lineup: Curry, Matthews, Wright, Lee, Biedrins. A little less potent, but better defensively, more balanced that what they have now, and better positioned for the future.

The L@kers are decent now, but they have clear holes on their roster at the 1 and 3 positions, and Bynum can never fully blossom with Gasol taking half the post shots (or more). With this trade they improve their PG and SF positions dramatically, replace Gasol with a slightly worse player, but give Bynum more room to grow. Starting lineup: Felton, Bry@nt, Wallace, Scola, Bynum. That's formidable. Maybe we don't want them to be that good.

Last but certainly not least: Portland. Our bugaboo for years has been point guard play. Is there another PG in the league that fits Nate's style better than Lowry? He's young, tough, defensive-minded, and playing good basketball. Another major problem we have since Brandon left is outside clutch scoring. Enter Ellis. He's a defensive sieve, but with Lowry, Batum, Aldridge, Camby, and Joel behind him, I'm not worried. And he and Lowry would average about 3.5 steals per game between them. Lastly, we all know we can't keep both Wallace and Batum, nor should we because both of them play out of position too often. Moving Wallace now for a good return allows Batum to move back to his natural position and get all the minutes he can handle. Matt Barnes as thorn off the bench isn't too shabby. Total roster looks like this:

Lowry, Smith (Leaving Armon off as I think he'll be cut for Przy)

Ellis, Crawford, Williams

Batum, Barnes, Babbit

Aldridge, Thomas, Smith

Camby, Przybilla, Johnson

That's a nasty squad right there. Long, athletic, good defenders all over, scoring punch where you'd like to see it, balanced, and only $45mil committed beyond next year to Lowry, Ellis, Batum, Aldridge, Williams, Thomas, and Babbit (I assumed 10mil for Batum, and left Crawford off). That's a nice core, with cap room to improve the C position.

So, what do you think? It's pretty hard to come up with a blockbuster where everyone gets what they want and actually gets better, but this might actually do it. Does any one of these teams say no to this? I don't think so. But I look forward to your tweaks and other ideas in the comments.

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