Cohen's Analysis: It was supposed to be a reason to celebrate, but the re-signing of Deron Williams has not resulted in a stellar outcome yet in Brooklyn. His statistics have plummeted, his confidence appears rickety and presently it would be irrational to suggest that D-Will is a top eight point guard. Chris Paul, Rajon Rondo, Tony Parker, Russell Westbrook, Kyrie Irving, Damian Lillard, Stephen Curry and assuming he returns healthy, Derrick Rose, are all seemingly better for their respective teams. The Nets need Williams to climb back into the top five if they want a chance of reaching championship potential.
Cohen's Analysis: There were signs during the summer that perhaps matching Phoenix’s offer sheet for Eric Gordon may have been a dubious decision. In addition to expressing some discontent for playing in New Orleans, knee problems have denied Gordon from playing a game this season. This is not what you want when you pay a guy about $60 million for four years.
Cohen’s Analysis: Blame it on the back injury or fault the system for not feeding him in the paint, Dwight Howard’s first season in L.A. has been substandard. It’s helping that the Lakers have strung together several straight victories, but the reality of it is, D12 doesn’t resemble the dominant player we witnessed for eight seasons in Orlando.
Cohen's Analysis: I’ve been fickle on Brooklyn’s decision to acquire Joe Johnson since the trade happened in July. At first, I thought it was a mistake because Johnson’s contract destroyed any chance for the Nets to sign Dwight Howard next summer when he is a free agent. But then, during Brooklyn’s torrid November, I applauded the decision and proposed that the Nets were the best team in the East. Now, after a dismal December, I have generally swung the other way again. Joe is not the player he was in Atlanta.
Cohen’s Analysis: From suspensions because of behavior detrimental to the team to a continual decline in performance, DeMarcus Cousins has not yet lived up to his unlimited potential. One would have to believe Cousins is available on the trade market. It just comes down to who believes they can reverse the negatives and incite all that promise.
Cohen’s Analysis: Some top five picks become franchise players and perennial All-Stars, others, unfortunately, become busts. Unlike his teammate Kyrie Irving, Tristan Thompson hasn’t glistened yet. There must be some concern in Cleveland that Thompson may have been a flawed choice with the fourth pick last year.
Cohen’s Analysis: Not only is he dealing with an elbow injury, Andrea Bargnani’s team is soaring without him. The Raptors are realizing they are better suited playing above the rim with high flyers such as Ed Davis, Amir Johnson and Terrence Ross. It seems like only a matter of time before Bargnani, still an extremely skilled offensive player, finds a new home by the deadline.
Cohen's Analysis: Philadelphia knew there were risks, but it used simple basketball logic to disregard the warning signs. It figured its only chance to go from mediocre to contender was to acquire a legit big man with a degree of dominance. So far, the risks have soaked all that initial celebration and now there is some serious wonder if Andrew Bynum will ever play for the Sixers considering he will be a free agent in the summer.