The 2019 Player Movement Thread

Discussion in 'Know Your Enemy' started by TMC, Jun 6, 2019.

  1. TMC

    TMC Administrator Staff Member

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    Might be a bit early, but let's start our yearly thread about the upcoming free agency, because it looks like this year's is going to be key for the future outlook of the league.

    And so it begins...

    The Brooklyn Nets trade Allen Crabbe, the No. 17 pick in the draft and a 2020 lottery-protected first rounder (or in 2021 or 2022, if the previous picks fall in the protected range, will become two second rounders if not conveyed by the 2022 draft) to Atlanta for Taurean Prince and a 2021 second rounder. The deal will be finalized on July 6.

    Why it matters for Brooklyn? Because they add a very good player in Prince, who is a 3-and-D forward that can play and defend multiple positions and because they clear space for a second max contract in the upcoming free agency, becoming a premium destination for free agents. They've already been linked with Kyrie and I'm pretty sure they're going to offer a very compelling case to key free agents willing to move. It's particularly bad news for the Knicks, because the Nets, if they add a couple of max players, are ready to compete for a ring right now. Their supporting cast is that good, they just need the stars to take the leap to the next level. And the Knicks can sell living in NYC, but guess what? The Nets can do that, too!!. They can't sell playing in the Madison, but the improved supporting cast should be more than enough to overcome that. Reports say that they are the dark horse in the KD run, so we'll see what happens... in any case, they've really improved with this deal.

    Why it matters for Atlanta? That's harder to explain... I'm not particularly in love with this draft outside of the top 5 guys (Zion, of course, Ja Morant, Barrett, Garland and Culver are my top five). There are a few guys that might develop into nice role players (Hunter, Coby White) but a #17 pick is not a particularly high pick, so there's a risk involved. They also get another first rounder, but not a particularly high one (as the Nets will be expected to make the playoffs, and even be a contender if they do well in free agency in the upcoming years).

    So not really sure why this deal was so enticing for Atlanta. Guess they didn't want to sign Prince to an extension and decided to get something for him (Crabbe will be a free agent after next year). But I'm not really sure this was such a good deal for them. Great for Brooklyn, tho.
     
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  2. xbay

    xbay NBA 1st Team All Pro Staff Member

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    The Lakers are going ALL IN on 2020. They swapped Lonzo Ball, Josh Hart, Brandon Ingram, the #4 pick and two other future firsts for Anthony Davis.

    They had to swing this deal. The west is WIDE open next season. They weren’t going to waste another year of LeBron’s prime. It’s Anthony Davis. It doesn’t matter that he will likely still test free agency next summer. Personally, I think losing Lonzo hurts (and many might disagreed, but I believe in his talent) because he won’t cost the Lakers much this year. He’s had trouble staying healthy, but man he plays tough defensively. Him and Jrue will be solid in NOLA with Zion.

    Also, those two future firsts will be interesting. It’s reported that David Griffin did not want their 2020 pick. And so it will be interesting to hear the details of those. Because they essentially have control over what first round picks they’d want from LA within the next 7 years.

    Now the Lakers will go hard after Kemba Walker. If they don’t land him, the PG class gets murky after him. Kyrie is going to in New York, Brooklyn or Boston. And so all that’s left is D’Angelo Russell, Malcolm Brogdon, Gorman Dragic... so yeah, they better hope Kemba wasn’t that serious when he said that he’d be willing to take less to help the Hornets sign other key pieces. It’s championship or bust for them.

    Let’s hope the Warriors field an adequate enough team to make the playoffs and by some miracle, KD re-signs and returns in 9 months and Klay returns after the all-star break for the playoff run. Lakers vs Warriors in the WCF. Rematch the Raptors with a full squad.
     
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  3. TMC

    TMC Administrator Staff Member

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    Ok, let's break down the trade:

    - Lakers get Anthony Davis (will get into that later).

    - New Orleans gets Lonzo Ball, Josh Hart, Brandon Ingram, the 2019 #4 pick, the 2021 pick (top 8 protected, unprotected in 2022), right to swap first rounders with the Lakers on 2023 and totally unprotected 2024 WITH the right to defer that pick to 2025 (not usual, believe me).

    For starters, what New Orleans got is a f*cking haul.

    Let's get into it, from New Orleans side first. One thing to consider is that you can't trade picks in consecutive years, which is why the 2020 pick was never in play in this deal, as the 2019 pick was an important part of the deal.

    It's also interesting that New Orleans has insisted in the 2023 swap and the 2024/25 picks, because Lebron's contract is over in the 2022 season (hence the right to swap picks in 2023). Nobody knows what kind of teams the Lakers will have by then, and those picks can certainly be valuable.

    So let's get into the players... Hart is a very good role player, a valuable guy coming from the bench. Ingram has a lot of talent and can develop nicely there, although I'd be concerned about his health and also about him needing the ball so f*cking much. He was mostly useless when he didn't have the ball in his hands, and with all the talent New Orleans is going to have, that might be an issue. But he's really talented, and proved it when the Lakers decided to run "point-Ingram" as the basis of their offense. So he's gonna have to adapt, but he's a very good piece.

    And Lonzo. Let's start with this: I think the best thing that could have happened to Lonzo is what happened. He's out of LA. Now, if he could only get traded out of his own family or simply find a way for his father to shut up... But let's focus on the basketball point of view... I don't like the fit in New Orleans, I don't like it one bit. Lonzo has trouble with his shooting (a terrible flaw in nowadays basketball) and, what matters even more, has trouble staying healthy. I think Lonzo does a lot of things well, mind you, it's not like he's a terrible player, he's pretty good. But those two points should matter a lot.

    Also, New Orleans has now the #1 (Zion) and #4 picks in the draft, and they will have a fantastic PG like Darius Garland available, and I do not think they're going to take him after trading for Lonzo, which is a mistake. That #4 pick is, most likely, Jarrett Culver, who is going to be a nice player, but I don't see the upside I see in Garland.

    So, for all of the above, if I were Griffin, I would have closed the deal with Kuzma included instead of Lonzo. Or with a third team sending a player I like over Lonzo. And I think that if the only issue was Kuzma instead of Lonzo, the Lakers would have said yes...

    In any case, it's a huge return for New Orleans. The Lakers have traded 10 years of their franchise just to add AD. And that's an amazing return for Griffin.

    So now LA has AD, LeBron, Kuzma and cap room for another star. It looks like, as XBay said, Kemba is the right guy, and he'd be a particularly good fit next to the guys they have. But Kemba is going to have suitors. It's true New York is not going to be so enticing as before KD's injury (supposing KD was the big signing of the Knicks), because now Kemba would be their top guy and would have to carry a bad team for one year without much help. But if he returns to Charlotte (and he's talked about it openly, as XBay wrote), the Lakers are screwed. D'Angelo Russell is not going back there (not in a million years), Brogdon is good, but you have to beat the Bucks to sign him (which means vastly overpaying), and he's not a true PG to being with. Dragic is done. They're going all in, but if they don't sign Kemba, it's likely they're going to have to sign wasted vets like last year just to fill their roster. They'll have to do some of that, no matter how you look at it. But this deal only works if you add another good free agent. I think Kyrie is the dark horse. Everybody expects him to go to Brooklyn but now I wouldn't be so sure... And he'd be even better than Kemba, as a third wheel to LeBron and AD.

    So it's easy to say the Lakers won the trade. Fact is, I don't know. New Orleans got a ton of assets and the Lakers have AD, who is great, but has had his share of injuries, Kuz and an aging LeBron (and it was pretty evident last year, although I guess he didn't feel like doing his best considering the kids he was surrounded with and how the season developed, particularly after his injury...). They need another piece, imho. But it can't be denied they got a big time talent in AD, a generational player, and now they're back in contender territory.

    Also, one other thing to consider... AD has said he's not signing an extension right now, that he'll still go into free agency. If the season doesn't go well (and injuries can kill a season fast), things might get interesting in LA.
     
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  4. xbay

    xbay NBA 1st Team All Pro Staff Member

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    There is also the possibility of flipping that #4 for a veteran. For whom that would be? Don’t know. But I wouldn’t be surprised if they did trade it.

    I think at the moment, the biggest winner of the trade is David Griffin. He had an opportunity to lead the Knicks, however Dolan did not want to give him full control. So he rejected them and enjoyed wine tasting in Sonoma County in Northern California with his wife instead. Then the Pelicans called. And regardless of the end result, he got the huge haul that Gayle Benson wanted for AD. And we won’t be able to truly evaluate this deal until all the assets have been used and time passes.

    The Jazz ultimately turned the picks the Warriors sent them in that 3-team deal to land Iguodala into guys who are no longer on the team or never were in Rodney Hood and Tony Bradley (whom they swapped #30 for #28, which ended up being Josh Hart) and others. So who knows? This situation is different given how far out everything is spread, but it would be hilarious if the Lakers had the opportunity to draft LeBron’s son down the road and the reason they couldn’t is because that pick was now owned by the Pelicans.
     
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  5. TMC

    TMC Administrator Staff Member

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    I really don't think Griffin is trading that pick. I mean, sure, he could if he could get, I don't know, Bradley Beal for the #4 pick and another pick, but I really don't think that deal is going to be there. And if he's trading for a young player, he might as well keep the pick.

    Another possibility, considering Lonzo's career so far, is to take Garland anyway and let them play out who's the best of them and trade the other one. That could be an interesting move.

    And don't get me wrong, I'm down on Lonzo's career so far, but if he fixes those two issues (shooting and staying healthy), he can be a really, really good PG. There's a lot of talent there.

    So who knows what's going to happen? One thing is clear, there's a lot of young talent in New Orleans, and a few good vets (like JRue, one of the most underrated players in the whole league) to lead them. It's going to be a very interesting season in the Bayou, and one of the teams I'm gonna watch as often as I can next year.
     

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