J.ROSS: Closing in on the NBA trade deadline
We have already had one big splash in the trade market with Blake Griffin being dealt from the Clippers to the Pistons earlier in the week. What else could be on the horizon? We still continue to hear rumors about George Hill and the Cavaliers but will that actually happen? Reports have it that the Cavs are trying to tweak things in regards to Hill’s lucrative contract. The Kings need to remember that they absolutely don’t have to do this deal. If they like what is being offered then go for it, but if not, stay away.
The Kings are actually in good financial shape right now. They currently have the 24th highest payroll in the NBA. They are slotted for about $70 million in contracts for next year at the moment. Keep in mind that almost half of the league is on the hook for over 100 million next year. The only real issue I have with their salaries right now is that they have about 9.5 million in dead money. They are still paying Matt Barnes, Anthony Tolliver and Aaron Afflalo some money to not be on the team. Other than that this team is set up pretty well going forward. Their largest contract is George Hill’s and like I said, if they can move him then that would be just fine with me. If he returns then they actually might be able to get more for him next season when the overall sum of that contract has been reduced by a season.
I will be anxious to see if the NBA starts to have a trading frenzy like this past summer that featured an incredible volume of movement. High profile players don’t always move at the deadline but the Kings made a huge splash last year when they moved DeMarcus Cousins and Omri Casspi to New Orleans for Tyreke Evans, Langston Galloway, Buddy Hield, and a 1st and 2nd round pick from the Pelicans. That is by far the biggest move the Kings have made in recent memory deadline or not. Other deadline deals in the last 10 years or so include moves like, Andre Miller for Ramon Sessions. The Kings also moved Tyler Honeycutt, Francisco Garcia and Thomas Robinson for Patrick Patterson, Cole Aldrich, and Tony Douglas. A few seasons before that the Kings dealt Kevin Martin in a large deal with a lot of pieces that returned Carl Landry to the Kings.
I would anticipate more of the smaller type of deals around the league but I sure am hoping for another deal that gets everyone talking. This time of year is fun for the fans but stressful for front offices and players. Enjoy the frenzy.