It looked to be a quiet deadline, with many of the big names already having been moved over the previous several weeks. Then, out of nowhere, deals started happening. Everyone and their D-League affiliate traded a point guard, Phoenix swapped out half its roster, and Philly ended up with another dozen picks to fuel Sam Hinkie's quest to either build a basketball team or an army capable of conquering a small Mediterranean tax haven. I think scoopmeister Adrian Wojnarowski summed it up best.
Good lord.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) February 19, 2015
Since so many deals happened, I will attempt to keep my forays into punditry to a minimum, while attempting to be as reasonable and non-#hotsportstake-y as possible. Let's begin.
Miami Heat Trade: 2017 top 7 protected 1st round pick, 2021 unprotected 1st round pick, Danny Granger, Norris Cole, Shawne Williams, Justin Hamilton
Miami Heat Receive: Goran Dragic, Zoran Dragic
New Orleans Pelicans Trade: John Salmons
New Orleans Pelicans Receive: Norris Cole, Shawne Williams, Justin Hamilton
Phoenix Suns Trade: Goran Dragic, Zoran Dragic
Phoenix Suns Receive: 2017 Heat top 7 protected 1st round pick, 2021 Heat unprotected 1st round pick, Danny Granger, John Salmons
I like this trade for Phoenix and think the Heat gave up too much. Dragic is a very good player, but he's nearly 29, the league is stacked at point guard, and he's almost a lock to get overpaid this summer. He gives the Heat a much better chance of being a frisky 7 seed, but 2 first rounders, especially an unprotected first rounder six years out, is a steep price to pay for two or three home playoff games. The Heat will be much better this season and next but anything could happen by 2021, and that pick could start looking awfully good in a few years. Nice low risk move by the Pelicans, in theory, if you think Cole has any potential at all in an offense that doesn't feature LeBron. I'm not too optimistic.
Milwaukee Bucks Trade: Brandon Knight, Kendall Marshall
Milwaukee Bucks Receive: Michael Carter-Williams, Tyler Ennis, Miles Plumlee
Philadelphia 76ers Trade: Michael Carter-Williams
Philadelphia 76ers Receive: 2015 Lakers top 5 protected 1st round pick (via PHX)
Phoenix Suns Trade: 2015 Lakers top 5 protected 1st round pick, Tyler Ennis, Miles Plumlee
Phoenix Suns Receive: Brandon Knight, Kendall Marshall
The Lakers pick is a valuable asset, as there is a very good chance it becomes the #6 or #7 pick this year or a lottery pick next year and it's difficult to even imagine the chain of events that could lead the Lakers back to the playoffs by next spring at this point. Given my high valuation of that pick, I think Philadelphia got the better of Phoenix in this deal. Is the right to control Brandon Knight's restricted free agency really worth a lottery pick plus two solid prospects? I don't see it. Knight's a very good scorer, but good scoring point guards who aren't good defenders are among the most common type of players in the NBA. I'm not a big MCW fan, but I like the calculated risk taken by the Bucks here. MCW's weaknesses become less glaring when you can put the ball in his hands and surround him with shooting, they take a flier on a young point guard in Ennis, and get a solid big man in Plumlee. To look at it another way, Knight is having a very good season, but I think there is a reasonable chance that MCW or Ennis will eventually outperform him.
Boston Celtics Receive: Isaiah Thomas
Phoenix Suns Trade: Isaiah Thomas
Phoenix Suns Receive: 2016 Cavaliers 1st round pick (via BOS), Marcus Thornton
In which the universe conspires to place Marcus Thornton and Gerald Green on the same team. I can't wait for the dueling heat checks and Hornacek's apoplexy during the defensive breakdowns. This seems like a slightly lower return than I'd expect for Thomas, but 1st rounders are always useful. It's also a weird trade for Boston to make unless the Celtics think that Smart and IT can thrive together. I don't know quite what to think, so I'm lukewarm on it from both sides. Which probably means it's fair.
Oklahoma City Thunder Trade: 2017 protected 1st round pick, Reggie Jackson, Grant Jerrett, Kendrick Perkins, the rights to Tibor Pleiss
Oklahoma City Thunder Receive: Enes Kanter, D.J. Augustin, Kyle Singler, Steve Novak
Detroit Pistons Trade: 2017 2nd round pick, D.J. Augustin, Kyle Singler
Detroit Pistons Receive: Reggie Jackson
Utah Jazz Trade: Enes Kanter, Steve Novak
Utah Jazz Receive: 2017 Thunder protected 1st round pick, 2017 Pistons 2nd round pick, Grant Jerrett, Kendrick Perkins, the rights to Tibor Pleiss
I think a late 1st rounder and a couple marginal prospects is decent if unspectacular value for Enes Kanter. It's certainly better than overpaying him this summer, unless he magically becomes a good defender over the next few years. I have very mixed feelings on this deal for OKC. I like Kyle Singler as a floor spacing role player and think that Reggie Jackson is a little overrated and will probably be overpaid this summer. Is Jackson really much better than Augustin? He's younger and has more room to improve, but I don't think this is a huge downgrade for them at PG and Singler has value. These points also make me skeptical of this deal's wisdom for the Pistons. I would like this deal more for the Thunder - Singler is exactly the player they need - if I was convinced Kanter was actually good enough to play for them in the playoffs. He's their 4th big at best, behind Ibaka, Adams, Collison, and maybe even 5th behind McGary if Mitch's early performance is anything close to his true talent level. Overall, I like the Singler pickup for OKC, but think the Jazz got the best out of this deal.
Denver Nuggets Trade: Arron Afflalo, Alonzo Gee
Denver Nuggets Receive: 2016 Trail Blazers top 14 protected first round pick, Will Barton, Victor Claver, Thomas Robinson
Portland Trail Blazers Trade: 2016 top 14 protected first round pick, Will Barton, Victor Claver, Thomas Robinson
Portland Trail Blazers Receive: Arron Afflalo, Alonzo Gee
Would you rather have a late first rounder or Evan Fournier? I think Denver got good value here while Portland gave up a (likely) marginal pick for someone who can be a useful bench payer for them. I think Afflalo's defense and peripheral skills are overrated but he's almost definitely an upgrade over the likes of Dorell Wright, C.J. McCollum, and Will Barton. Good job all around.
Detroit Pistons Trade: Jonas Jerebko, Luigi Datome
Detroit Pistons Receive: Tayshaun Prince
Boston Celtics Trade: Tayshaun Prince
Boston Celtics Receive: Jonas Jerebko, Luigi Datome
Why your coach shouldn't be your GM, part one. Boston gets a useful power forward for nothing.
Brooklyn Nets Trade: Kevin Garnett
Brooklyn Nets Receive: Thaddeus Young
Minnesota Timberwolves Trade: Thaddeus Young
Minnesota Timberwolves Receive: Kevin Garnett
Why your coach shouldn't be your GM, part two. This has received enough discussion elsewhere on the site without my rant on the terrible process this deal indicates.
Washington Wizards Trade: Andre Miller
Washington Wizards Receive: Ramon Sessions
Sacramento Kings Trade: Ramon Sessions
Sacramento Kings Receive: Andre Miller
Welcome back, George Karl.
Houston Rockets Trade: 2015 lesser of Wolves or Nuggets 2nd round pick, Isaiah Canaan
Houston Rockets Receive: K.J. McDaniels
Philadelphia 76ers Trade: K.J. McDaniels
Philadelphia 76ers Receive: 2015 lesser of Wolves or Nuggets 2nd round pick, Isaiah Canaan
Good for McDaniels. He used the system to his advantage and now he's on a contender who will probably pay him this summer. I like this more for the Rockets than the Sixers. What are the chances Canaan or that 2nd rounder end up being better than McDaniels? Yeah, McDaniels won't be making the minimum salary next year, but he's still a good bet to be fairly compensated given the salary limits on players in his situation.
Houston Rockets Trade: 2017 2nd round pick, 2019 2nd round pick
Houston Rockets Receive: Pablo Prigioni
New York Knicks Trade: Pablo Prigioni
New York Knicks Receive: 2017 Rockets 2nd round pick, 2019 Rockets 2nd round pick.
Decent deal for both sides. Knicks get some late round fliers to replace picks already traded away and Houston bolsters its bench for the playoffs.
Philadelphia 76ers Trade: Rights to Cenk Akyol
Philadelphia 76ers Receive: 2015 Thunder top 18 protected first round pick (via DEN), JaVale McGee, rights to Chukwudiebere Maduabum
Denver Nuggets Trade: 2015 Thunder top 18 protected first round pick (via DEN), JaVale McGee, rights to Chukwudiebere Maduabum
Denver Nuggets Receive: Rights to Cenk Akyol
Nuggets seem to be happy to get rid of JaVale. Sixers are happy to get another first round pick plus the 5% chance that JaVale becomes the next Whiteside. It'll be interesting to see if Brett Brown even plays McGee now.
New Orleans Pelicans Trade: Draft considerations (whatever that means)
New Orleans Pelicans Receive: Ish Smith, rights to Latavious Williams, cash considerations, draft considerations (whatever that means)
Oklahoma City Thunder Trade: Ish Smith, rights to Latavious Williams, cash considerations, draft considerations (whatever that means)
Oklahoma City Thunder Receive: Draft considerations (whatever that means)
I have nothing to say about this trade.
Like most trade deadlines, this one featured teams weighing the costs and benefits of acquiring future assets for players that will help them over the short term. The most interesting team, to me, is the one which attempted to do both; Phoenix. The Suns made deals for long term assets with Dragic and Thomas and a shorter term deal for Knight. Like many deals involving young players, Knight's future development, on both ends of the court, will determine the success of the trade. This makes it difficult to completely evaluate many of these deals today and I look forward to seeing how our thoughts about these deals change in hindsight.