I am not sure I would want to trade Al anymore. I was open to the idea, but after watching a lot of games, I am truly impressed with how much he has improved on defense. He was absolutely dreadful in the first six minutes of last night's game. I believe he was one of the players Rambis quasi called out in the media saying that they weren't ready to play, Flynn and Wilkins being the other two. But when Al came back in the second quarter, he started stopping penetration and that is when the Wolves started making runs back at them. He still made some bad plays in the quarter, but he also made some really good plays. Then in the third quarter, it started off poor again, but quickly transitioned back into stopping penetration well and in the fourth quarter Jefferson really did as well as I have seen him ever play. I would say he played well for 60% of the time on defense and 40% was not good and that ratio is significantly up from anytime in his career as a Wolf. He has also improved his passing. He no longer is a black hole. He may be on a couple possessions, but that is a significant improvement from even earlier this season. Rambis and Co have done a wonderful job this year improving Al's game and I don't understand why Kahn would give up on Al when there has been so much progress made in just 5 months.
If Kahn was really looking to move Big Al the only real trade that interests me with Al is trading him to OKC for Harden, their 1st, and fillers. Harden is going to be the Kevin Love of the perimeter. Ridiculously efficient. He passes. He shoots. He attacks the rim well. He is an all around player. He always seems to be on the positive side of +/-. He has a net +81 while only playing 45% of the minute available. Durant is a +90 in 82%. Then Kahn should do whatever he can to add Solomon Alabi in the draft and add Ginobli and Haywood through FA.
Love, Turner, Harden, and Ginobli would really make up for Flynn's lack of playmaking and all should fit very well within the triangle. Haywood would make a solid stopgap as a backstop. Alabi could develop slowly and eventually make it in to the rotation. Flynn could be unleashed to just look for himself. Our perimeter defense would drastically be upgraded.
Ginobli might be hard to attain, but HoopsHype just recently had an article recently saying that Ginobli didn't think that the Spurs will resign him and I agree. They are already have $47.2 million tied up in TD, Parker, and Jefferson and only have 5 guaranteed contracts next season. They have way too many holes to fill with very little wiggle room if the luxury tax line is going to be $65 million or so. If that doesn't work out Kahn still has many options that he can make and if Ellington keeps improving, maybe he would be worth running as the backup SG.
Otherwise I am fine with moving forward with Al. I think he is going to keep improving and hopefully he will turn into an acceptable 5 on the defensive end. Kahn could still make most of the moves above and the Wolves could run Brewer and him at the 2/3, then we can play around with moving Flynn/Rubio, Pekovic, Utah's 1st, Charlotte's 1st to improve the perimeter. Maybe trade to get another Top 10 draft pick and draft Xavier Henry or Wes Johnson. Maybe go after Rudy Gay, Joe Johnson, or Ray Allen, who is in a slightly less dire of a position than the Spurs. Anthony Morrow would be a great guy off the bench, especially if Ellington doesn’t show much in terms of his jumper the rest of the season. There are just so many options that Kahn could do, it is the only thing that is really keeping me interested in such an abysmal franchise.