This is the time of the year where the NBA gets a little frantic a week away from the trade deadline (Thursday, February 23 @ 3:00 p.m e.t). Just in the last two weeks, we already saw both Plumlee brothers finding a new home. Teams are trying to find that missing piece to propel them into the playoffs, get them a better pick in the NBA draft lottery, or to simply shed some cap space.
1.) February 2, 2017:
Charlotte Hornets Receive:
Center, Miles Plumlee
Milwaukee Bucks Receive:
Center, Roy Hibbert
Center, Spencer Hawes
Review: This is a rather small trade between three players that do not make much of an impact for either team. Charlotte does this trade to get younger in the front court and gamble on Miles Plumlee finding his second year form where he played in Phoenix (24.6 mpg, 8.1 ppg, 7.8 reb, 1.1 blks). Since his second year, Miles Plumlee has seen a dip in his numbers and hasn’t played in more than 61 regular season games. Milwaukee’s reasoning for this trade is simple to figure out. They get to add depth to their front court with two totally different types of centers. One center (Roy Hibbert) is more defensive oriented who can still get you a block a game at the age of 30 and 3.6 rebounds in his limited action. The other 7-footer Spencer Hawes is a floor spacing type of player. His three point percentage has taken a huge dip this year to 29%.
Winner: Charlotte- because they get a younger player who still has potential in the right situation. The Milwaukee Bucks get two players past their prime who have major deficits in their game.
2.) February 12, 2017:
Portland Trail Blazers Receive:
Center, Jusuf Nurkic
2017 First Round Pick ( Top-5 Protected)
Denver Nuggets Receive:
Center, Mason Plumlee
2018 Second Round Pick
Review: This was a well needed trade for both teams. Portland gets a young 22 year old 7-footer that has huge potential. That kind of size and potential is hard to find and does not grow on trees in the NBA. Also, Portland receives Denver’s 1st round pick which will likely be right around the 15 spot where you can still find a serviceable player.Why would Denver trade a 7 foot center with lots of potential? Well, they already have a young, 7-footer with lots of potential. So their reasoning is that they couldn’t play the two next to each other. They hope Mason Plumlee can slide next to Nicola Jokic and also be a solid backup to him since he has the ability to guard the power forward and center spot.
Winner: Portland Trail Blazer- they may have formed their own big 3 of Damian Lillard, C.J. McCollum and Jusuf Nurkic. Also, they get the center with more potential and a first round pick.
3.) February 13, 2017
Cleveland Cavaliers Receive:
2017 Second Round Pick ( Top 55 Protected)
Charlotte Hornets Receive:
Center, Chris Anderson
Winner: Both teams win this trade. Cleveland opens up a roster spot to sign a hopeful buy-out candidate in the next two weeks and Charlotte gets money to waive Chris Anderson. Cleveland will most likely not see this draft pick since it’s top 55 protected.
4.) February 14, 2017
Toronto Raptors Receive:
Forward, Serge Ibaka
Orlando Magic Receive:
Shooting Guard, Terrance Ross
2017 First Round Pick
Review: This is the first major trade this season. Toronto bolsters their front court which was a huge position of need for the Raptors. Serge Ibaka will start next to Jonas Valanciunas and bring the missing piece to their starting line-up. This makes Toronto a lot more interesting in the Eastern Conference and most likely pushes them pass the Boston Celtics for second in the conference. The Orlando Magic clear the overload they had at power forward allowing Aaron Gordon to go back to his more preferred natural position. They also receive a solid back up shooting guard and a late first round pick.
Winner: Toronto Raptors- this trade could be the difference in home court advantage for the Raptors or not. Home court would give this team a huge confidence boost and an easier path to the conference finals where they would most likely face the Cleveland Cavaliers. I still do not think they have enough to take down the Cavaliers unless the Cavs continue to fight the injury bug into the playoffs.