Shaq’s tour of duty ended in Miami, Pau Gasol moved even further west of his home and we’re anxiously awaiting a Jason Kidd trade. We all know about the Blockbusters but how about the Hollywood Videos? Show some love for the Mom ‘n’ Pop video store trades.
These three trades have flown under the radar, for the most part but are momentous in their own right.
1. Kyle Korver to the Utah Jazz and Gordon Giricek, conditional 1st round pick to the Philadelphia 76ers
Unfortunately, Giricek didn’t pan out for the Jazz. I really thought he was going to be a nice shooter and heady player when he arrived in Salt Lake City. He was supposed to be the second coming of Jeff Hornacek, right down to his constant face rubbing. But he just couldn’t break into Jerry Sloan’s rotation. And I heard he got a rash from the rubbing.
Korver bolsters that Jazz perimeter and provides a nice compliment to Ronnie Brewer’s head-strong, slashing style and the relative ugliness of Andrei Kirilenko and Matt Harping’s game. I’m amazed by the number of 3-point shooting white guys this team has. The Jazz have actually played better since the Korver trade and currently sit as the third seed in the Western Conference.
2. Mike Bibby to the Atlanta Hawks and Shelden Williams, Lorenzen Wright, Anthony Johnson and Tyronn Lue to the Sacramento Kings
The Kings have finally gotten their ideal front court stacked with bruising, plodding bangers. Gone are the days of finesse passing big men like Vlade Divac and Chris Webber. They couldn’t win a championship with that kind of a hig-octane offense so the Maloof Brothers took it in the complete opposite direction. A sampling of their front court is as follows: Shareef Abdur-Rahim, Ron Artest, Spencer Hawes, Mikki Moore, Kenny Thomas and John Salmons. I could grab a team of 2nd graders and look like the Suns against these guys.
The Hawks, however, made a very intriguing move in getting Bibby. I would almost call this team Golden State East. Run Bibby at the point with Joe Johnson, Marvin Williams, Josh Smith and Al Horford. Suddenly, Josh Childress, Speedy Claxton and Salim Stoudamire don’t seem like on-court liabilities. Run, run and run again with that line-up, Mike Woodson.
3. Trevor Ariza to the Los Angeles Lakers and Reggie Evans, Brian Cook to the Orlando Magic
This was actually a very nice rotation player trade for both teams. I liked Evans on the Lakers, he stepped up to make some nice plays while Kobe Bryant took breathers. He was strong with the ball and had a knack for getting to the hoop. He didn’t over shoot or over dribble like a lot of younger bench warmers do.
I suspect that the Lakers wanted more size so they could play Kobe more at the 2 and move a slightly improved Jordan Farmar off-ball as well. Ariza came onto the scene and gelled very well with the Lakers squad.
Evans is seeing a bit of time with the Magic and doing his thing. Brian Cook, like all other Illinois alums not named Williams, is in charge of making pancakes for the team breakfast. Omelettes are best made by soft 6’11” basketball players. Look it up; it’s science.