The timing of Dell Demps arrival as New Orleans new general manager was anything with ideal when he was hired on July 27, virtually all of the major free-agent moves had already taken place. In a period of less than four months, however, Demps seems to be making up for lost time, pulling the trigger today on his sixth trade.
After Saturdays trade that landed point guards Jarrett Jack and Marcus Banks, along with frontcourt reserve David Andersen, the Hornets 15-member roster now includes only five players who were on the 2009-10 squad (Chris Paul, David West, Emeka Okafor, Marcus Thornton, Aaron Gray).
Here is a list in reverse chronological order of the trades Demps has made since the summer, with the impact of each deal (all stats are entering Saturdays slate of NBA games):
Coming: Jarrett Jack, David Andersen, Marcus Banks from Toronto
Going: Peja Stojakovic, Jerryd Bayless to Toronto
Impact: If Jack performs the way he has over the majority of his six-year NBA career, he immediately gives the Hornets one of the best backup point guards in the league. He and Chris Paul are close friends, first competing against each other in the ACC, when Paul was at Wake Forest and Jack starred for Georgia Tech. Andersen is a skilled frontcourt reserve who debuted with Houston as an NBA rookie in 2009-10, but was traded in July. Andersen had played in 11 of the Raptors 13 games this season. Banks logged just 22 minutes over three appearances.
Coming: Jerryd Bayless from Portland
Going: A partially protected 2011 first-round pick
Impact: Bayless did not play well in his 11 regular season games with the Hornets, shooting just 34.7 percent from the field and 21.4 percent on three-pointers. Although the bench has fared much better than many NBA analysts anticipated entering 2010-11, Bayless struggled at times to adapt to the backup point guard role. He had 28 assists and 17 turnovers with New Orleans, a 1.64 ratio.
Coming: Curtis Jerrells from San Antonio
Going: A future conditional second-round pick
Impact: Jerrells was waived by New Orleans on Oct. 24. As a result, the draft pick will not be conveyed to the Spurs.
Coming: Willie Green, Jason Smith from Philadelphia
Going: Darius Songaila, Craig Brackins to Philadelphia
Impact: Green and Smith quickly emerged as important reserves for a deeper-than-expected New Orleans bench, averaging 20.7 and 19.0 minutes per game, respectively. Green has been the Hornets most consistent sub and often is relied on by the coaching staff for defense during crunch time. New Orleans is 8-1 in games decided by single digits. Meanwhile, Songaila and Brackins have been used sparingly by the 76ers. Brackins has yet to make his official NBA debut, not appearing on the floor since the preseason. Songaila has logged a total of 27 minutes in four regular season appearances.
Aug. 11 (four-team trade that also involved New Jersey)
Coming: Trevor Ariza from Houston
Going: Darren Collison to Indiana, James Posey to Indiana
Impact: Ariza has been an invaluable, jack-of-all-trades anchor for the Hornets vastly improved defense, which held each of the first 10 opponents to fewer than 100 points. In some instances, Ariza has guarded the opposing teams point guard, shooting guard and small forward all on the same night. Hes always assigned to the best wing scorer. Meanwhile, Collison is off to a very solid start for the Pacers, averaging 15.1 points and 4.1 assists, though hes missed recent games due to injury. Posey is generally Indianas eighth or ninth man, playing about 20 minutes a game. Hes taken to a new level his career trend of being heavily reliant on perimeter shots, taking a staggering 86 percent of his shots from three-point range (43 trey attempts out of 50 shots).
Coming: Marco Belinelli from Toronto
Going: Julian Wright to Toronto
Impact: Belinelli moved into New Orleans starting lineup in preseason and has remained there for all 11 regular season games. Belinelli is the Hornets third-leading scorer and has put up excellent shooting percentages across the board (47.5 on field goals, 43.1 on treys, 85.7 on free throws). Wright was picking up DNPs by coachs decision regularly early in the season, but cracked the Raptors rotation recently. In seven appearances, hes averaging 4.7 points, 2.4 rebounds and 15.0 minutes.