Following the colossal Dwight Howard trade that involved four teams, eight players, and a lot of money exchanging hands; people were pretty riled up about the Lakers' gains. Los Angeles sent away Bynum and a late-first rounder for a perennial All NBA center whom despite his poor reputation, is still a helluva a ball player and a piece any team would want. People saw it as highway robbery, after over a year's worth of build up between Orlando, Brooklyn, Houston, and the eventual benefactors, the Lakers; Orlando didn't really get as much as expected. They moved the best piece, and got the worst package, an odd move.
Philadelphia received burgeoning bi-polar star, Andrew Bynum, turning a position of strength into an all-star center by sending Andre Iguodola away to Denver. Now, Iguodola has been my personal man-crush for years; and any deal involving him was one that I prayed we'd be a part of. No such luck, I guess. He's a great player that had been put in a bad role with the 76er's, so he never really got to flourish until he was seen on Team USA in London. He did all the right things that he was meant to do, as a cog to the machine; not the engine. Now, he's with a stellar organization with stellar coaching, and a great young nucleus of players to work with. All seems good, right? Well, there is some opportunity for us here, and since we failed in acquiring Iggy, now we need to find another SF that is not just another stop-gap.
Not long ago, the Nuggets received Wilson Chandler and Danilo Gallinari, a pair of fine wings. The latter has flourished into a threat from the three as well as for the drive to the hoop. But Chandler? He regressed in his year with the Nuggets; not being given the role he had with a dysfunctional Knicks squad. His percentages dropped, as well as his overall production, but he earned a 5.6 million dollar contract from the Nuggets preceding that year.
We at Sactown Royalty always lament our usage of funds on poor to mediocre small forwards. We spent a total of 23 million on potential solutions such as John Salmons, Francisco Garcia, Tyreke Evans, Travis Outlaw, and Tyler Honeycutt. Only two of these players are listed as small forwards, and the other three often struggle when inserted in the lineup. Salmons couldn't defend the bigger forwards, and Tyreke lost his major advantage he held his rookie season; his height and length at shooting guard. And Garcia? He hasn't been the same since a tragic yoga incident.
You think that's a lot of money? The Nuggets have five players classified as small forwards, and spend upwards from 33 million on them next year alone. That's over half of the cap on a single position. All of these players present an upgrade to our situation, but Chandler is likely the most available (and economical). He is signed for another couple of years at a reasonable rate, and can provide some good numbers if given some burn. The obvious question now is: What would you give up to acquire Chandler?
Jimmer is a project that can be developed behind Ty Lawson and Andre Miller, both capable point guards. He'll definitely help Miller get some rest on the bench when he needs it (he's like fifty now, right?). Garcia, unfortunately is mostly just a balancing agent for salaries, and an expiring contract for Denver to let go of the following summer. This brings us another legitimate small forward at a good price, and Denver will get some cap alleviation and depth to boot.
It's August, and I'm ready for the NBA to come back now.