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> Monday, March 26th, 2012 > Sports > NBA Watch: Movers and shakers
NBA Watch: Movers and shakers
Click here to read more Interrobang articles written by Victor Kaisar
Published: Monday, March 26th, 2012
The 2012 NBA trade deadline came and went and it left some basketball fans like me wondering things like would Dwight Howard be traded? Would Pau Gasol be traded? Which team would strengthen their squad up in the hope of lifting the trophy at the end of the playoffs? Itís questions like this that are asked around every trade deadline, whether itís the NHL, MLB or the NBA. There were some moves that came as a surprise, and some that didnít cause such a big uproar.
Derek Fisher to Houston: This was the biggest move that took place on deadline day. The longtime L.A. Lakers point guard was dealt to the Houston Rockets for a first-round pick in 2012 and reserve centre Jordan Hill. Fisher was a virtuoso at leading former Head Coach Phil Jacksonís triangle offense before the Hall of Fame coach retired. Fisher struggled to adjust to new coach Mike Brownís system, as he lacked the explosion and quickness to effectively run Brownís traditional offense. Interestingly, Fisher was subsequently bought out by Houston and is free to sign with any team.
Ramon Sessions to the L.A. Lakers: This was the other deal that the Lakers were involved with on deadline day. Point guard Sessions and small forward Christian Eyenga moved to California for two-time NBA champion Luke Walton, former three-point contest winner Jason Kapono and a first-round pick in 2012. Sessions should fit nicely into Brownís plan. It should be noted that Kapono was put on waivers by Cleveland.
Monta Ellis to Milwaukee: This wasnít a deadline day move, but it was one of the most talkedabout trades. The Golden State Warriors gambled by trading Ellis, their leading scorer, for injured Milwaukee Bucks centre Andrew Bogut. The Warriors have made the playoffs once since 1994 and havenít had a true centre in years. The Warriors will be fearful of the fact that Ellis could become an all-star in Milwaukee. But itís a gamble they took and if Bogut can stay healthy, it could be one that pays off. As part of this trade, Ekpe Udoh and Kwame Brown also went to Milwaukee while Stephen Jackson joined Bogut in Golden State (only to be traded to San Antonio on deadline day).
Leandro Barbosa to Indiana: You know that things are not going your way when you trade two players for a second-round draft pick. Such was the case for the Toronto Raptors. Barbosa and Anthony Carter join the high-flying Pacers who are looking to secure the playoff spot they currently sit in. To be honest, Iím surprised that one of the big teams did not swoop in for Andrea Bargnani, who has clearly been Torontoís go-to man in an otherwise lacklustre season. The Raptors will have Indianaís second- round pick in 2012.
NenÍ to Washington: Brazilian centre NenÍ was dealt by Denver to Washington, leaving many to question his contribution to the Denver franchise. This trade might haunt Denver in the short run, for NenÍ is a playoff veteran but with JaVale McGee and Ronny Turiaf moving to Denver from Washington, it could ultimately pay off for the Nuggets.
Marcus Camby to Houston: The Portland Trailblazers, who are already without centre Greg Oden, traded their other centre Camby to the Rockets. Camby has expressed desires to end his NBA career in Houston. In return, Portland received point guard Jonny Flynn, centre Hasheem Thabeet and a future second-round draft pick. The Rockets are in a playoff position and are hoping to make a playoff run. For Portland, it looks to be a season of rebuilding after the team parted ways with head coach Nate McMillan as well.
Gerald Wallace to New Jersey: When I said rebuild mode for Portland, I meant it. The Blazers sent Wallace to New Jersey in exchange for former Utah centre Mehmet Okur, forward Shawne Williams and a first-round pick in 2012. Okur is a centre who loves to shoot, so that could help Portland on offence, but for a team in a mini state of crisis, 2012 doesnít look to be all that good a season for fans in Rip City.
There were three other trades in the NBA that I didnít talk much about: Stephen Jackson to San Antonio, two days after the Golden State Warriors acquired him; Nick Young left Washington and will line up for the L.A. Clippers; and the Memphis Grizzlies sent Sam Young to Philadelphia and acquired Ricky Sanchez in return. The stage has now been set for the 2011/12 NBA season to burst into life, and the season should live up to all the hype it has been promising.