By NBA.com staff
Posted Feb 19 2009 7:24AM
We asked NBA.com's writers to put together some trades that they'd like to see happen. With the trade deadline fast approaching (3 p.m. ET on Thursday), here are the four they've dreamed up:
The Trade: The Suns trade Amar'e Stoudemire to New York for David Lee, Nate Robinson, Malik Rose and Jerome James
Why It Would Be Good: The Knicks get a true superstar in Stoudemire, who already has clicked in the past with the coach, Mike D'Antoni, when D'Antoni was in Phoenix. True, Amar'e could opt out before the magical Summer of 2010, but if he sticks around, wouldn't another superstar want to team up with him in New York? The Suns get an energy guy who can run the pick-and-roll in Lee. Plus, Lee's a more aggressive rebounder than Stoudemire. The Suns also get a backup point guard in Nate Robinson for Steve Nash. Robinson, like Lee, knows how to run the pick-and-roll. They do it for D'Antoni now. Rose comes off the books this year and James after the 2009-10 season.
Why It Won't Happen: Because I couldn't imagine the Suns working out something that may help D'Antoni no matter how much it could help them. And with Alvin Gentry taking over the reins in Phoenix (and holding them much more loosely than former coach Terry Porter), the Suns might be less willing to part with Stoudemire. Also, Lee and Robinson are restricted free agents and the Suns may have their services for only 30 games or so.
Why It Will: The only way I could truly see this happening is if the Suns felt Stoudemire poisoned the well so much that they feel compelled to move him. Sure, there are reports that they've been in talks with Toronto and Chicago on a three-way deal that would include Chris Bosh and Tyrus Thomas in a trade-day version of Twister. But a swap with the Knicks could clear the way for the Suns to save money and start plans to completely rebuild when the contracts of Shaquille O'Neal and Steve Nash expire after the 2009-10 season.
-- Rob Peterson
The Trade: The Sixers trade Andre Miller and Donyell Marshall to the Timberwolves for Mike Miller and Sebastian Telfair
Why It Would Be Good: Philadelphia is dead last in the league in 3-point percentage (31.8). Kareem Rush (just eight made threes this season) and Donyell Marshall (12 makes) haven't been able to fill the void created when Kyle Korver was shipped to Utah two seasons ago. Mike Miller is 46-for-133 from deep this year and has long been considered one of the league's deadliest marksmen. Meanwhile, the Wolves get a very solid starter at the point and Philly gets much younger.
Why It Won't Happen: Philadelphia might think that, in a buyer's market, it could better use the money that's freed up when Andre Miller and Marshall leave to bring in a couple of bargain basement free agents. Also, Andre turns 33 in March, so Minnesota might not want to bring in a dinosaur and give up on its young pup in the 23-year old Telfair.
Why It Will: Andre Miller's contract expires this summer (so does Marshall's). It's unlikely that Philadelphia will be able to pay him what he's looking for. Instead of having him walk for nothing, the 76ers can nab that shooter they've been missing and give Telfair a shot at playing the point in an up-and-down system. From a financial standpoint, it's appealing to the Wolves even if Andre Miller and Marshall don't re-sign because they take about $11 million off their cap for next season, which coupled with Jason Collins' expiring deal could give them enough money to try to re-sign Andre, go after another big-name free agent or just save money.
-- Dave McMenamin
The Trade: The Pistons trade Tayshaun Prince and Kwame Brown to the Blazers for Raef LaFrentz, Rudy Fernandez and Sergio Rodriguez.
Why It Would Be Good: The Blazers rank second in the league in offensive efficiency, but 20th defensively. In order to truly compete with the best teams in the West, they need to improve. Prince is one of the best defenders in the league and would solidify Portland's starting lineup. With LaFrentz, Allen Iverson and Rasheed Wallace, the Pistons would have almost $50 million in salaries coming off the books this summer, giving Joe Dumars plenty of money to play with either in 2009 or 2010. He'd also have two young players to develop alongside Rodney Stuckey for years to come.
Why It Won't Happen: Prince is the Pistons' most important player and they will already have plenty of cap space without making this deal. Also, of all their small forwards, Fernandez is the one the Blazers would least like to trade. Nicolas Batum and Martell Webster are more expendable.
Why It Will: Blazers GM Kevin Pritchard has to know that he needs a defender in that small forward spot, preferably one with some experience. Prince is the perfect fit. The Bucks' Richard Jefferson could be another target as Pritchard looks to make something of LaFrentz's expiring deal. The Pistons like Stuckey, but will need a more traditional point guard in that backcourt down the line. And the potential of Fernandez may be enticing enough for Dumars to part with his current franchise cornerstone, Prince.
-- John Schuhmann
The Trade: Steve Nash and Leandro Barbosa to Portland for Steve Blake, Jerryd Bayless and Raef LaFrentz.
Why It Would Be Good: The Blazers are stacked with young talent, but the one place where they don't have a potential star is point guard. Nash would provide veteran leadership, command instant respect in the locker room and be the steady hand a young team needs in the playoffs. Barbosa teaming with Rudy Fernandez off the bench is insane. The Suns can start their inevitable rebuilding with two point guards in Blake and Bayless, a rookie from Arizona.
Why it Won't Happen: The Suns' recent coaching change was made to get Nash back to doing what he does best and the franchise is committed to extending his contract this summer. Phoenix is more inclined to play this season out before making wholesale changes.
Why it Will: The savings for the Suns would be immense starting with next season. LaFrentz has an expiring contract, while Blake is done after 2009-10. Phoenix would still have Bayless and cap space to be a player in 2010. The Blazers could also be part of the 2010 spending spree when Nash comes off the cap.
-- Art Garcia
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