Forget for a second that the NBA is, as Bill Simmons once said, the No Balls Association. Teams are so tied to their pseudo-stars that they're unwilling to take any risks. What are some ways that the also-rans of the league (basically, everyone but the Lakers, Celtics, Cavs, and Magic) can shake things up without going into rebuilding mode? To me, every team that lingers on the fringes of contention should be open to such moves instead of waiting on those 50 cents on the dollar trades that are cap motivated. So here are some cap-friendly trades that would work.
1. In a 3-way trade:
Andre Iguodala to Minnesota
Charlotte does it to keep adding quality players without regard to payroll and try to make a deeper playoff run. Philly does it because they essentially replace Brand's deal with Chandler's expiring and replace Iguodala's deal with Diaw's much smaller deal that expires two years sooner. The Wolves do it to increase their roster balance.
2. Atlanta trades Josh Smith and Jeff Teague to the Nuggets for Nene and Ty Lawson: the Hawks start to re-build after the inevitable Joe Johnson defection by bolstering their backcourt and adding a true center that allows them to move Al Horford to the 4. Denver gains a high-flying running mate for 'Melo who has a long-term deal, with Kenyon Martin's expiring still available as a trade chip. This trade also works with just Smith and Nene.
3. In a 3-way trade:
New Orleans gets Kirilenko's expiring as a trade chip and replaces Okafor with a cheaper, younger, less-talented player. Indiana gets a point guard to fit its team and system along with a quality player and gives up future cap flexibility. Utah gets potential cap flexibility with two smaller expiring deals along with a young player who takes over for Millsap off the bench when he replaces Boozer in the starting lineup.
Because of how much time it wasted, er, took to figure those out, those are the 3 I could come up with for now. Thoughts?