I know that a lot of guys are getting annoyed at all of the outrageous trade scenarios that certain people are coming up with on this forum. If we are to look back at the history of major North American sports, there have been very few times where MVP candidates have been traded, especially those instances where as many as 4 or more teams have been involved. Plus, with the arrival of the ESPN trade machine, everyone has an easy and organized way of discovering if their trades are economically viable. At the risk of being docked many thumbs down (please God no!) I am going to say that these trades ARE possible right now and I will present the reasons why.
1. 2010 Free Agency - There has never been a situation in NBA history quite like this. Never have so many young superstars and still contributing veterans been available at the same time like they will be after the 2009-2010 season. Without listing every available player, since everyone reading this probably could list about 10 All-Stars off the top of their head that will be a FA alone, let's all just agree that the possibilities of a team SIGNIFICANTLY improving their team's talent level are at an all time high. Older, more experienced MVP players such as Dirk and Nash are going to be on the market at the same time.
2. VERY YOUNG TALENT - Since Kevin Garnett started a trend of high school players bypassing college basketball to go straight to the pros, and succeeding, there are a ridiculous amount of very young all-stars in the league. Now, with the creation of the new "At least 1 year of time passed since your high school class graduates and when a player is eligible to be drafted" rule, there should be a difference in the amount of teenagers in the NBA. That leaves about a 10 year window of time in NBA history where players are reaching free agency before they traditionally reach their "prime" years. This is a very unique situation that will most likely not be replicated any time soon.
3. BIG NAMES RUMORED TO BE DISSATISFIED WITH THEIR TEAM - When has there ever been 2 All-NBA centers like Amare and Bosh, who are both in their mid-twenties, not even been #1 on the list of potential free agents? LeBron James is only 24, he has shown the talent to lead his team VERY close (not close enough yet, but close) to a championship almost by himself, and has the physical tools and desire to become one of the best there have ever been. Plus, he seems VERY likely to be out the door in Cleveland. A 24-year-old MVP is going to be a free agent? Well, not only is it ridiculous to think that Cleveland would trade someone of his caliber, but it's also silly to think that they shouldn't try to get some trade value in return if he is going to bolt town. Amare Stoudamire has made no secret of wanting a change of scenery from Phoenix and just within the last few days it was confirmed that Chris Bosh doesn't plan on signing an early extension of his contract in Toronto. Dwyane Wade? He was the MVP of the Finals in just his second season, yet is currently on a team that appears on the fast track to "good, just not good enough". With his style of play and his age coming into the league being "an issue" compared to all of the high schoolers, he might look to join a team that is more "title ready" after next season.
4. SALARY DUMPING - I cannot remember another professional sport that had such a crazy run of trades based solely on a player's contract opposed to his actual skill level. It has gotten out of hand, with a hopeful end in sight (2010), and needs to be addressed by the league office. But, until that happens, there could be a lot of lopsided deals that occur in the next 12 - 14 months just so teams can clear cap space. If a player like Chris Bosh is traded, Toronto probably won't get equal value in return. The best they might hope for is salary cap relief so that he can be replaced through free agency the following off-season. It doesn't appear to make sense on paper, but it has been happening under the radar for a few years and has just come to a head in the last couple of seasons. After Kevin Garnett signed his long-term, ridiculously high contract, the NBA changed the rules. Players were no longer allowed to sign with a new team for unlimited salary increases. Also, the luxury tax was put into effect to prevent salary cap manipulation from the "Larry Bird Rule" to act as a deterrent for free spending teams. Paying a guy $10,000,000.00 a year who is your 8th rotation guy is a lot, but ensures that you have a deep and talented bench. Having to pay $20,000,000.00 because you are over the luxury tax and the number is doubled gives teams reason to think twice. The Chicago Bulls have been tops in the NBA in attendance after Jordan left even though they haven't had a real title contender throughout that entire time span. That money coming in allows the Bulls to be free spending in theory, but their Chairman Jerry Reinsdorf has told people that they will not pay unless they are a serious contender. Many teams are in the same boat. This allows talent to be traded for salary cap relief, which is a new development in the NBA.
5. 'Larry Bird Rule' - Why would a team want to trade for LeBron James, giving up nearly every talented player on their roster, when he would only be on the team GUARANTEED for 1 season? Why not just wait until he is a free agent, where you could give up ZERO talent to acquire him? Because a team RE-signing someone can offer more salary than a team signing a player. When you are talking about max contracts, you are talking about upwards of $25 - $50 million dollars over the length of a contract. Having that "trump card" in their back pocket allows a team more of a bargaining position. Worst case scenario, LeBron skips town anyway? Well, that team now has the ability to sign one of the other multiple all-stars available on the market.
6. 2009 and 2010 drafts - With the 2009 draft being devoid of any sure fire all-stars besides Blake Griffin, and the 2010 draft being top heavy with youth, the draft is what throws one last curveball into the whole process. 2 rookie contracts are what an above average veteran makes, but with the upside of potential. The rookie pay scale allows a team to know how much money needs to be devoted to their draft "slot", which is a new development. Without any guaranteed superstars, such as the 2003 draft, draft picks aren't as valuable this season as others.
I don't want to offer validity to EVERY crazy trade proposal that is put together. But, if a player like LeBron James gets traded away from Cleveland within the next year I wouldn't be COMPLETELY shocked. I don't think that it's going to happen, but my jaw wouldn't exactly hit the floor. Bosh? Amare? I actually would be shocked if they didn't get traded and they are both young, All-NBA big men. I think that the current situation in the NBA might just provide a "perfect storm" for some crazy transactions to occur. In the past, when guys like Barkley and Shaq were traded, there was never equal value returned in the deal. With all of the other factors above thrown into the equation, there could be some stunners that actually DO happen. It's a fun time to be a "video game NBA executive". Anything is possible.
I wouldn't give you a thumbs down Scott because it's a well-thought out post unlike the trade scenarios posted by a few that are not worthy of the contents of a sewer. Here's why I COMPLETELY disagree with your post, but respectfully. Everyone needs to realize this before anything in sports, and some cynically would say life itself. The MOST important thing to any organization is FAN SUPPORT (money). Not wins and losses, not "chemistry" and "character", nothing is more important than ticket sales. So the next time you think of a trade possibility, the FIRST question that should be asked is "Will this trade kill our fan support?" All other questions come after that. That should put the LeBron trade thing to rest, but I can explain more in depth to anyone that asks.
I agree with you on LeBron. If I were Danny Ferry, I would make it so HE has to leave town. I wouldn't want to be the guy who sent him packing, same way I wouldn't want to be the guy who drafted Sam Bowie. That being said, if he let's it be known publicly that he wants to leave, why wouldn't they? I mean, he's already wearing a Yankees cap. What does he do next, get a James Knicks jersey? Buy a NY restaurant with Jeter? I am just kidding about these last two points but my point is this...
We have never seen all of this before. This hasn't happened. When Jordan was 24-25, was he in this situation? No, he wasn't. There has never been a free agent class this stacked either. If LeBron wants to leave Cleveland, here's the best case scenario for Cleveland. He tells the Cavs in private, they trade him for the most they can get, and after the deal is complete he publicly states that he wanted to go to a larger market where he has the best chance to win a title. That's a win-win for everyone, except the Cavs fans, but if he wants to go...he's gonna go. The money might not be an issue since he could gold-plate his testicles with the money he'll make anywhere. I could see the allure of being LeBron and moving to NY. I wouldn't do it, I would stay and be a GOD in Cleveland. But, he grew up there. Maybe the man wants to move away from home. Hell, even a guy like Derrick Rose got at least a year in Memphis. I couldn't imagine being in his situation and not thinking about how cool it would be to live in LA, NY, Miami, hell even Chicago. At any rate, it's just an interesting and unique situation.
I'll let you all figure out who I agree with...
I am guessing that you agree with the gold-plated testicles part - lol
I have a feeling that OKC makes a VERY aggressive move to get Blake Griffin. It might actually look to basketball people like they overpay, including everyone reading this, but I think Blake Griffin paired with Kevin Durant will make them more money than any combination such as Durant and Green, Westbrook, Harden/Thabeet/Rubio, and their 2010 1st rounder. If they ship off Green, 2009 #3, and 2010 #1 they would be overpaying. But, I feel that Oklahoma City is more of a Blake Griffin town than it is a Thunder town. Those two guys paired together would start a frenzy of season ticket purchases. It's a unique situation where the hometown guy just so happens to be an all-star caliber, sure fire #1 pick right when the relatively small market OKC franchise gets started. That would probably make a lot of financial sense to bring in Griffin, but it might not happen because it might not make the best basketball sense right now. I agree with what your point about money but these are also unique, once in a lifetime situations here that have long term financial implications. In the OKC situation, they might benefit in 20 years by gaining fans through Blake Griffin that they wouldn't get otherwise. The LeBron situation with Cleveland is similarly unique. He holds all of the cards and is also good enough to deserve it. Whenever a superstar gets shipped off, never for close to equal value either, it seems that the PLAYER is the driving force like when Barkley was traded to Phoenix for Hornacek and a bag of balls. LeBron may force the Cavaliers hand. But, unless they are 100% certain that James is leaving, the Cavs should hold on to him and make him leave of his own accord. No offense to Cleveland, but this is probably their best chance at having an all-time great play his whole career for them. Once again, brought on by a unique situation of LeBron being an Ohio native and them getting lucky with the #1 pick in the 2003 NBA Draft.
Not trying to sound like an ass or anything but i stopped reading when i saw Dwyane Wade being finals MVP in his second season. Given it was his third year, but still. The point of the article is that 2k9 trades happen. THEY DON'T. One time has such a trade happened, yes i agree we could see a lot of big names switching teams. But not at the rate you're seeing on here. Most likely traded players anyone at any given moment from the suns,CB4, and a host of second tier players. The likelyhood, much more slim. Team would rather lose a player right out and get luxury tax money than trade him for garbage and a couple low level firstrounders in a draft where the #1 pick MIGHT end up as good as kenyonMartin in his prime. Not so sure about that one. Again, not trying to be an ass, just stating my opinion.
Wow, I write hundreds of words and made one minor numerical mistake? You're a pretty harsh critic. You didn't capitalize the letter "i" but I still read until the end. I just threw Wade in there to pad the argument anyway since I seemed to be only bringing up Bosh, Amare and James so I didn't really give it much thought.
I guess that it depends on the 2K9 definition. After I typed this whole thing I realized that a 2K9 trade is probably:
Lebron to Miami
Wade to New Orleans
Paul to Dallas
Dirk and Howard to Cleveland
In that case, you guys are correct. Now, a 3 or 4 team trade with 2 BIG NAME, all-star players are VERY, VERY rare. Those are the trades I have been talking about. It seems that any trade including LeBron James is considered a 2K9 trade to some people and that's short sighted. This is a very unique time in the NBA, one that hasn't been seen before. A couple of major trades involving major players and multiple teams is very possible. I mean, how many people changed teams due to LeBron James already? The entire Knicks roster? What did they make 4 or 5 trades last season alone? When was the last time a team like the Knicks made that many trades in one season?
Now, once again to be clear, if you guys are calling 2K9 trades to things like above than I agree with you. If a 4 team trade with a couple of all-stars being moved is a 2K9 trade than I think it could happen.
Hell, how many trades have gone down on draft day the last few years? It seems like there has been more movement in recent years on draft day than average. Anyone else notice that?
i am a harsh critic when it comes to these 2k trade scenario's. Lebron James goes nowhere unles it's for an entire team and even then i don't think it happens. I agree that this is an odd time in the NBA as teams like the Suns,Warriors,Mavs, and Spurs to name a few may ditch some big names inhopes of next year, i just dont see all these crazy ones coming true. So my apologizies for the criticism, this is just a reoccurring topic anywhere any more. Single team trades involving up to 5 or 6 people, yes...three team trades involving a couple stars and some other pieces definitely could happen,....even a four team trade could happen,very unlikely, but definitely possible.....anything else is unrealistc.
I disagree with LeBron. Although part of me says that he will stay with the Cavs and history says he will probably stay with the Cavs, my gut tells me he will not stay in Cleveland. My point is that we are in such a unique situation that history cannot be looked at in the same way as it should and usually is. In regards to LeBron, let's look at his situation:
Every team in the league will offer him a contract. If he calls up Dallas, and they don't have any room under the cap, they'll make room. Cleveland has no young stud on the team. They haven't surrounded James with any All NBA type of talent, not that they haven't tried but they just haven't. Mo Williams is a very good player who made the all-star team this year. If he never makes another all-star team again though, I wouldn't be that surprised. Plus, not to be a prick, but it's Cleveland. It's not considered the best town in the world. Seriously, I am trying to be nice but it's just a fact that Cleveland isn't a well respected NBA city. I would probably like it but I don't think that the majority of NBA players dream of putting on a Cavs uniform. Shaq left for Los Angeles even though the Magic were contenders at the time, too so where a team is located can make a HUGE difference when it comes to the Super Star players.
How could LeBron not look at Kobe's situation and not be a bit envious? Let's take away the 3 titles for a minute, which is hard to imagine but for the sake of argument let's just do it. The Lakers were able to rebuild into a contender around Kobe by adding an All NBA talent at C in Gasol, while also developing a young stud C in Bynum. They have one of the best coaches to ever coach an NBA game. The team has an impressive history. Superstars are sitting courtside giving you a high five when you do well. The weather is beautiful all year round. Christ, the women walking down the street are prettier. The list goes on and on. Now, what does Cleveland offer that LeBron can't get anywhere else? 2 things. 1, more money per season than anyone else can offer by a substantial margin, but either way his endorsements will make him more money than his NBA contract (with wild rumors that he will actually get paid A LOT more from Nike if he plays in NY, LA, or Chicago). Second, he will be a GOD in Cleveland. When he is done playing, there will be 2 types of Cleveland athletes in the history of the city. LeBron James and everyone else. But, he is from Ohio. Maybe the dude wants to get out and be the "King of New York"
My point is, the best case scenario if LeBron does want to leave is that LeBron goes to Danny Ferry and the Cavs and tells them that he plans on playing elsewhere. They arrange a trade where they get a young stud (or 5) in return and then LeBron publicly states that there was NOTHING that the Cavs could have done better. He just felt that it was the "right thing for his family" to move and play somewhere else. This would require LeBron and the Cavaliers to make the decision this off-season or POSSIBLY before the 2009-2010 trading deadline, but it's less likely. That would put into play the 2009 NBA Draft, as crappy as it is, because young cheap talent with potential is the only thing that could get a deal done. So, I don't think that all of the "LeBron to the Clippers!" or "LeBron to Portland!" rumors are "2K9 TRADES". There has never been a situation before where guys are holding press conferences 2 YEARS IN ADVANCE of being a free agent talking about what decision he is going to make in the future. At least I can't remember one. This is just LeBron too. There are former MVP's who can still play and want to get another (or first) ring, other All-NBA guys in their prime (if they have even reached it yet), and also a league that has just seen one of the best drafts in half a decade. The amount of draft day trades are also higher than ever. Also, these multi-team trades are very rare, but not unprecedented. That 4 or 5 team trade this decade http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/news/story?id=2122976 that helped put together a championship team in Miami (Dwyane's 2nd year, right?) was less than 4 years ago. Although there weren't any Hall of Famers in their prime being moved, there were still significant players. When was the last time a team traded away 9 players using 6 different trades in 1 season like the 2008-2009 New York Knicks? That's not even including that they deactivated 2 starters from the previous year in Eddy Curry and Stephon Marbury! There are 2 examples right there!
Of course, you are right, having 15 different trade scenarios where guys are re-arranging the entire NBA roster like it's some fantasy draft because the ESPN trade machine says "Trade Accepted" and NBA 2K9 says that the teams would accept it DOES get annoying. But, my whole point is that if there was ever a time that this crazy crap would happen, this is the time. Like I said, there are teams that are trading away their entire roster (NY) just in the HOPES of signing a big name guy. If teams are acting that crazy, who knows what could happen.
The Lakers are able to build a contender around Lebron simply because Lebron cant have players around him who can create for themselves. Lebron likes 3 shooters and a big. That's why he won't win anything until he TRUELY learns the team game. He want's numbers ...he wants to be the pg,sg,sf,pf, and c...he wants the pts,ast,rbs..all of the above. I didn't even know it was possible to get a triple double on that many points. Nice but come playoff time after you consitently run through the &$#%#&@! teams and run into the defensive mnded team that makes you do all the work, it becoes apparent you need a real second and third option. Either Lebron needs to man up and start playing in the post with someone else distributing the ball, or look to pass into the ost and get other guys going. Doesn't matter where he goes the same problems will always follow, until he decides to stop being a stat padder and become the winner he's destined to become.
So...tell me how you really feel about LeBron. I'm just kidding by the way, you are right about a lot of that stuff. The fact that he's only 24 and improved so much that most of us think he will do all of that. I do think that the Cavs weren't very good though OTHER than LeBron. I was very surprised that they won so many games. They played together well though all year, until they ran into the match-up crazy Magic and LeBron panicked and tried to do everything himself. Oh, and Mike Brown got outcoached by Van Gundy, the television analysts, and the people in the stands too. After this experience I see James trying to recruit guys to join him in whatever city he wants to go to, similar to the Tracy McGrady, Grant Hill, Tim Duncan Orlando Magic that never came to be. I think that LeBron and Wade playing together would be a similar situation as Hill and T-Mac were. Of course, Hill tried to play hurt for the Pistons in the playoffs and was never the same but that dude was awesome. If they would have put that together and Duncan would have decided to leave (which people didn't really like to do until...well until now) they would have been a 2K9 type of team.
is the only movement of superstars. Suprerstars for superstar trades dont exist, their are too many intangebles between the lines to trade a superstar. Name me one trade that a superstar got traded, that the franchise loved?
btw...in my previous post i meant to have tat the lakers built a contender around Kobe because he doesn't have to keep the ball in his hands to be effective the way most of these young like LBJ and Wade. Kobe is best off the ball which makes fo a much more balanced team when your superstr can involv the rest of his team. Odd that one of Kobe's flaws wasalways the isolation of teammates on the court and Lebron's was always unselfishness. How stange things turnarnd. BTW..hating how the media is so quick to start turning on LBJ, as a longtime Kobe fan and seeing the way they turned on him and scrutinized him for so many years, you can already see it starting to go down with the King. Question is, does he have the resiliance of Kobe to alow the media noto affect him. So far he's let them, make him believe he's unstopable and better than MJ and Kob, which to this point, is not the case and th margin is a lot greater thante numbrswuld lead you to believe.