Judging by this year, it seems to me to be successful without a star-laden team, you need a strong defensive presence and/or depth.
Asik is probably the best defensive center potentially available, and isn't a complete disaster offensively. He would instantly improve our defense by miles.
The Rockets of course, would be looking to trade him only if Dwight is going to sign there. That looks like it has a good chance, though who knows. If I remember correctly, at this point in 2010, LeBron was going to Chicago.
We'd be a great trade partner because we have the cap-space to absorb the contract and the need. Trading Asik would clear enough room to sign Dwight to a full max contract, and give them a little room to pursue a veteran four.
Also, I am not quite clear on the details (maybe Storyteller will chip in) but Asik and Lin's contracts either hit the cap at about $15m or they get paid that much with a lower cap-hit in 2015. Either way, they would be on the hook for about $65 million between four players (Asik, Harden, Howard, Lin) in 2015.
For the sake of discussion, we'll say we trade our #10 for Asik, although that is complicated because they are unlikely to want to trade him on draft night, so that would be assuming they like whoever we picked. I am kinda hoping we can get him for just cap-space, 2nd rounders (which the Rox do better with anyway) and Greek, but I don't want to be too much of a homer.
By my rough calculations, we would have about $5m in space after this trade. I am not too particular on how we use this, but we need shooters and you can never have too much big man depth. So maybe something like Asik's Houston teammate Carlos Delfino and PF/C Elton Brand. If we could get Jack instead, that would be sweet, but I think his price tag will be higher.
Here is a little wrinkle; do a sign-and-trade for Evans AFTER we use our cap-space. We would hopefully be able to come to an agreement before actually consummating the deal, allowing us to use our space in the meantime.
Sending Matthews and Freeland (along with cash, 2nd rounders, and perhaps Greek) would allow us to offer anywhere up to the max. The Kings would get a defense-first veteran, which they certainly do not have now, and minor assets so they don't lose Evans for nothing.
In other circumstances, I wouldn't advocate trading Wes or Joel. I think Wes is the heart of the team and Joel's value will only grow. But this year their cap hits mean more and Evans is probably the biggest talent we could realistically acquire and it would allow us to pick up Asik as well.
After re-signing Maynor (although I think other options, like a better shooter, could be better if we get Evans) for the RE and filling out the roster with veteran's minimum guys and 2nd rounders, it'd look something like this:
Our interior defense would improve drastically with Asik, O'Neal, and Brand. I think Evans would be an awesome compliment to Batum, Lillard, and LMA. And our depth issues would be pretty much solved.
I think this team is a second-round team in year one, with a lot of upside as young guys develop. And best of all, it seems somewhat realistic to me (with the Asik deal being the biggest holdup, as it pretty much depends on Howard).
What do you guys think?
(I labeled it player acquisition drawer, so we can put all our ideas in the comments if you want. I know there are like four offseason posts everyday)