The news of James Harden being unhappy in Brooklyn is kind of what drew so much attention to the NBA leading up to this year‘s deadline. Also, the movement rumors of Russell Westbrook made things buzz due to his benching in crunch time. I was impressed to see most of these moves be win/win situations for most players and organizations involved. With Philly acquiring the best player before the deadline, can’t go wrong by dubbing them as the winners of this week.
The trajectory of the Eastern Conference has changed. The top 3 best rosters in the East all got better; Bucks acquired another champion and 2-way floor spacing veteran in Serge Ibaka. Nets acquired more perimeter shooting in Seth Curry, added size with Andre Drummond, and added a defensive presence with the infamous Ben Simmons. Philly got the superstar guard James Harden to pair with their superstar big Embiid.
My only takeaways leading up to the deadline is not having any of our contenders out west and the Lakers make any marquee moves. Utah and Phoenix made some minor cap adjustments, and Golden State didn't participate. This shows these guys are gearing up for the second half of the season with what they got in the house. Lakers management reported that they will be lingering in the buyout market due to their players' contract situations. Along with the Lakers, the Knicks not making any moves had to be the most glaring, and it will be interesting to see as the season plays out.
Kings adding DiVincenzo + All-Star big Sabonis
Indiana Pacers pairing Tyrese Haliburton and Malcom Brogdon in their backcourt + Wing/Perimeter shooter in Buddy Hield
I'm surprised Portland didn’t make more moves to help Dame after losing CJ McCollum to the Pelicans. Overall, I'm anxious to see what the Eastern Conference has in store after the All-Star break.
This season's trade deadline has been entertaining. Finally, most of the rumors have become a reality. The speculation is finally over.
The drama brewing among the Brooklyn Nets and Philadelphia 76ers made the Ben Simmons and James Harden swap a foregone conclusion. The most surprising part to me is the Nets managing to run off as the winners. The Nets finessed the 76ers by acquiring Seth Curry, Andre Drummond, two first-round picks, and Ben Simmons. In return, the 76ers got the services of James Harden; only. The Nets walked away with a plethora of assets, but the 76ers got the more talented and proven players out of all this. Pairing James Harden with Joel Embiid (arguably the best big man) and managing to keep Tobias Harris, Mathias Thybulle, and Tyrese Maxey gives Philly fans a lot to look forward to.
More teams in the Eastern Conference made noise with their moves. For one, the Washington Wizards moved Spencer Dinwiddie, Davis Bertans, and a second-round pick to acquire Kristaps Porzingis from the Dallas Mavericks. Adding the size and shooting of Porzingis will surely do something to spice things up for the Wizards.
On the other hand, the defending champion Milwaukee Bucks made a sneaky move acquiring Serge Ibaka, a former champion and floor spacer. Serge Ibaka will prove to be a valuable piece for the Bucks with his postseason experience, shooting, and defensive presence.
The most impressive move of all this came from the Indiana Pacers. The Pacers are stuck in the weird spot of being a playoff team but nowhere near a contender. Their move acquiring Tyrese Haliburton, and Buddy Hield gives them something to build towards. Haliburton has proven to be one of the league's bright young stars.
While the Eastern Conference teams went all out, teams on the west coast left me scratching my head. The LA Lakers made not a single move; something that is concerning for Lakers fans. The Russell Westbrook drama continues and the milage on LeBron James' body piles up as they continue to struggle. The Portland Trail Blazers finally moved CJ but did nothing else to strengthen the roster in the present day for Damian Lillard. The Sacramento Kings pretty much gave away a young rising star in Haliburton for All-Star Domantas Sabonis. Only thing is, they are adding an All-Star to a lackluster team and disregarding the future.
Might not seem like much, but the Charlotte Hornets getting their hands on Montrezl Harrell is something sneaky. The Hornets grabbed Harrell from the Washington Wizards while only having to give away Ish Smith and Vernon Carey. The fast-paced offense of the Hornets and Harrell's rim running ability is a perfect fit. The visionary passing of All-Star LaMelo Ball will see Harrell getting many lobs and drop-offs. Imagine a fast break with Ball, Miles Bridges, and Harrell running at opponents. This move will make for exciting basketball in Charlotte, and I'm all about exciting winning basketball.