In this day and age of 24 hours media coverage, twitter feeds, discussion boards and blogs, it was refreshing that the Deron Williams trade came completely out of the blue. Absolutely nobody saw that one coming. Then the Celtics and Thunder shocked the league with their Jeff Green-for-Kendrick Perkins deal minutes before the 3 pm deadline hit.
In the days immediately following the deadline, seemingly everybody comes out with a column grading the trades or picking the Winners and Losers. I suppose I could do that, but it's already old hat just three days after D-Day. Plus, if there's one thing that the Deron Williams trade proved (other than you don't become a Russian billionaire with taking a few chances), it's that we have no idea right now if the Nets win or lose that deal. It all depends on Williams seeing it through to Brooklyn in 2012.
|Avery, watch your back!|
For the safety of Deron and his family, forget I brought it up. Here are the five most lopsided trade-deadline deals over the last 15 years (note: the deals had to occur during the week leading up to the deadline, so no Pau Gasol-to-LA on this list).
5. The Houston Rockets trade Carl Landry and Joey Dorsey to Sacramento for Hilton Armstrong and Kevin Martin (2009)
Landry was one of the most-productive per minute guys during the first half of the 2008-09 season with Houston and was one of the league-leaders in fourth-quarter scoring at the time of the trade to Sacramento. With rookie Tyreke Evans and Martin failing to mesh in Sac-Town, it seemed like a logical deal at the time. However, Landry regressed in his time with the Kings, eventually going back to a bench role and averaging only 11.8 points per game this year. The Kings ultimately flipped Landry to the Hornets in a controversial deal for reserve guard Marcus Thornton, effectively a very poor man's version of Martin. Meanwhile, Martin has emerged as Houston's best player and the league leader in free-throw makes.
4. The Chicago Bulls trade Brad Miller, Ron Artest, Ron Mercer and Kevin Ollie to Indiana for Jalen Rose, Travis Best, Norm Richardson and a 2002 second-round pick (Lonny Baxter) (2002)
The early 2000's were some dark times for the Bulls as the franchise struggled to find its way after MJ's (second) retirement. Who can forget wonderful first-round draft picks such as Marcus Fizer, Dalibor Bagaric, Eddy Curry and Jay Williams. The Bulls actually did well getting Brad Miller as a free agent and landing Ron Artest in the middle of the first-round in 2000, but those players did not blossom until after they were traded to Indiana. Jalen Rose put up some big numbers in Chicago (22.1 points per game in his one full season with the Bulls), but was later dealt to Toronto (in what was eventually labeled "the Donyell Marshall trade, another deal that backfired for Chicago). The Bulls were 43-85 during the Rose-led era in Chicago. Indiana, on the other hand, went from 42 wins in 2001-02 to 61 wins and an Eastern Conference finals appearance two years later before the Artest-melee sent them into a tailspin.
3. The Boston Celtics trade Jiri Welsch to Cleveland for a future first-round draft pick (2005)
|Lebron's running mate,|
From Boston's perspective, this deal turned out to be a gold mine. The future first-round pick came in 2007 (Rudy Fernandez), but the Celtics ended up trading that pick to the Suns during the 2006 draft for a point guard from Kentucky named Rajon Rondo. If you factor that in, this one moves even higher up the charts.
2. The Detroit Pistons trades Lindsey Hunter, Chucky Atkins, its 2004 first-round draft pick and cash to Boston and Zeljko Rebraca, Bobby Sura and a 2004 first-round draft pick to Atlanta in exchange for Rasheed Wallace and Mike James (2004)
Rasheed was traded to the Hawks by Portland (for Shareef Abdur-Rahim, Dan Dickau and Theo Ratliff) just 10 days prior. However, he was unhappy in Atlanta and only ended up playing one game for the Hawks, who were 18-36 at the time. Atlanta ended up shipping him off to Detroit, and Wallace turned out to be the one missing ingredient for a Pistons team that won the title that year, made the finals the following year and was the Eastern Conference's most formidable team from 2004 to 2008. The Hawks went on to win 13 games in 2004-05, but did land Josh Smith with the 17th overall pick from this trade.
1. The Seattle Supersonics trade Gary Payton and Desmond Mason to the Milwaukee for Ray Allen, Kevin Ollie, Ronald Murray and a 2003 first-round draft pick (Luke Ridnour) (2003)
|Get. Me. Outta. Here!|
To say the trade didn't work out for the Bucks would be an understatement. They finished the season 42-40 and promptly lost to the Nets in the first round of the playoffs. Payton was on the first flight he could find out of Milwaukee and bounced at the tail end of his career with the Lakers, Boston and Miami before finally winning a ring in 2006. Allen has made seven out of eight all-star games since the trade, won a ring in Boston and just became the all-time leader in three-pointers made. All the Bucks got out of the deal was 2 1/2 exceedingly mediocre years out of Desmond Mason and the opportunity to pay Redd $91 million dollars to play an average of 42.7 games per season the last six years.
- New Orleans trades Baron Davis to Golden State for Dale Davis, Speedy Claxton and cash (2005)
- Atlanta trades Dikembe Mutombo and Roshown McLeod to Philadelphia for Theo Ratliff, Toni Kukoc, Nazr Mohammed and Pepe Sanchez (2001)
- Washington trades Juwan Howard, Obinna Ekezie and Calvin Booth to Dallas for Christian Laettner, Loy Vaught, Etan Thomas, Hubert Davis and Courtney Alexander
The Colton Index:
Teams of the Week:
|1. Houston Rockets(from 18th to 16th) - Wins at Detroit, at Cleveland, vs. New Jersey, at New Orleans. Nice week for the Rockets. They cleaned up on three of the lesser teams in the East and capped it off with a nice win in New Orleans. Also, Houston saw two teams ahead of them (Denver and Utah) get significantly weaker at the trade deadline. Plus, Daryl Morey got a future first-round pick from Memphis essentially for taking Hasheem Thabeet off their hands. How'd that Number 2 pick work out for you, Memphis?|
|2. Phoenix Suns (stays at 15th) - Wins vs Atlanta, at Indiana, at New Orleans. Another borderline Western Conference team cleaning up on Eastern Conference foes. Here's a little fun fact for you...the Western Conference is 200-147 in interconference games this season. Of course, Indiana is probably going to make the playoffs while either Phoenix or Houston is going to get left out.|
|3. Los Angeles Lakers (stays at 6th) - Wins vs Atlanta, at Portland, vs LA Clippers, at Oklahoma City. A great start of the homestretch for the Lakers, with three wins against playoff teams (and one against their roommates). They seem to have Oklahoma City's number.|
Teams of the Weak:
|1. Golden State Warriors(from 19th to 20th) - Losses vs Boston, vs Atlanta, at Minnesota. The All-Star break came at the wrong time for the W's. Coming off a week with three straight wins against teams over .500, the Warriors got blown out at home by the Celtics and Hawks, and then for the icing on the cake, lost to the lowly Timberwolves (somebody box out that Kevin Love guy!).|
|2. Portland Trailblazers (from 11th to 13th) - Losses vs LA Lakers, vs Atlanta; Win vs Denver. Portland's choke job against the Lakers was eerily reminiscent of their overtime loss to Miami last month. But overall things are looking up for the Blazers, with their franchise player hitting a big three in their win against Denver and their heist of Gerald Wallace from Michael Jordan's Charlotte Bobcats (small retribution for that whole Sam Bowie-thing).|
|3. Los Angeles Clippers (stays at 23rd) - Losses at Oklahoma City, at New Orleans, at LA Lakers, vs Boston. Check out those four opponents. That's a brutal week for any team. The Clippers finished their Grammy roadtrip 2-9 then salted away a great start against a demoralized Boston team on Saturday. I blame Baron Davis.|
Updated with Games as of Sunday February 27th
|Rk||Move||Team||W-L||Last 15||Avg Diff||SOS Rk||Colton|
Must watch games this week (all times ET):
Mon 2/28: Atlanta at Denver (9:00 PM)
Tues 3/1: New York at Orlando (7:00 PM, NBA TV Fan Night)
Weds 3/2: Chicago at Atlanta (7:00 PM); Phoenix at Boston (7:30 PM); New Orleans at New York (7:30, NBA TV)
Thurs 3/3: Orlando at Miami (8:00 PM, TNT); Denver at Utah (10:30 PM, TNT)
Fri 3/4: Chicago at Orlando (7:00 PM, ESPN); Oklahoma City at Atlanta (7:30 PM); Miami at San Antonio (9:30, ESPN)
Sat 3/5: Denver at LA Clippers (10:30 PM) - 6 games on slate for Saturday, the 12 teams playing are an average of 13 games below .500
Sun 3/6: Chicago at Miami (1:00 PM, ABC); LA Lakers at San Antonio (3:30); New York at Atlanta (6:30 PM, ESPN); Phoenix at Oklahoma City (7:00 PM)
Continuing our series from last week, here's #4 on our list of the Top 10 Dunkers in the NBA.
#4. J.R. Smith
Team: Denver Nuggets
Pos: Wild Card
School: St Benedict's Prep School (NJ)
Height/Weight: 6'6" 220 lbs
Dunk Signature: Man-in-flight hang time, baseline dunks usually over big men, flashy fast-break dunks, and unique post-dunk celebrations.
Previous Weeks: #10. Russell Westbrook
#9. DeMar DeRozan
#8. Dwyane Wade
#7. Rudy Gay
#6. Josh Smith
#5. Derrick Rose
Dunks of the Week:
Here are the top 5 Dunks for the week ending 2/19, as voted on by the Wegobomber Dunk Committee.
5. Andre Iguodala with the breakaway windmill against the Pistons, while Andres Nocioni practices his shadow puppets.
4. LeBron James with an impressive double-clutch reverse jam against the Bulls (not sure if he touched his shins though, Reggie)
3. Amare Stoudemire with an emphatic slam over J.J. Hickson, who is quickly becoming the Shawn Bradley of the NBA
2. Randy Foye with a great bounce pass from Blake Griffin and a powerful stuff on Jeff Green, literally only 90 seconds into Green's career with the Celtics
1. Blake Griffin turns a poor alley-oop pass into yet another highlight reel dunk
Bonus: I put together since last week's Dunk Contest Review column. It shows the evolution of the Slam Dunk Contest with signature dunks from each of the champions from 1994 to 2011. I particularly enjoyed Magic Johnson's insightful commentary after Dee Brown's no-look dunk in 1991 and the prediction of big-time endorsement dollars for Harold Miner after winning the dunk contest in 1993.
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