I started tinkering around with this trade idea last Wednesday, but never followed up with publishing a post. Today, with Yahoo!’s Marc Spears reporting that the Utah Jazz could face a roster shake-up and Mike Jones, of Mike Jones Sports, reporting that multiple Wizards have asked to be traded, i.e., more than just Mike James, it seems like an appropriate time to float this proposal out there. And no, this is not like Bill Simmons’ silly Utah-Washington-Cleveland idea where the Wizards would lose Haywood, Jamison, Butler and James and only get Shaq and Boozer in return … although my idea is almost as drastic.
So here goes …
Utah has the Carlos Boozer issue hanging over their head, the desire to remain cheap, and is a decent team unwilling to take a big step backwards.
Washington is not in a good way. If you read this blog site, you know this. Shot out to any readers in the Philippines who know this (they really, really like the NBA over in the Phillippines).
Not many ifs, ands, or buts about it, Ernie Grunfeld needs to make a move. He also would like to save some money, or remain “flexible.”
Previously expressing the opinion that all options should be on the table for Grunfeld and that he should avoid straight salary dumps, he goes my proposition …
TO UTAH, Washington sends:
TO WASHINGTON, Utah sends:
In James and Foye, the Wizards are departing with about $10 million in expiring contracts, but gain about $2.3 million in expiring money by adding Boozer’s $12.3 million that the Wizards could let walk this summer.
Heading into the off-season, assuming Stevenson takes his player option for next season and the team handles Dominic McGuire’s qualifying offer situation, the Wizards would have eight players and around $52 million in total salary on the books for 2010-11 (Arenas, Miles, Stevenson, Blatche, Kirilenko, Young, McGee and McGuire). Not much lower than the $53.5 million the Wizards currently have on the books for 2010-11.
However, in the summer of 2011, since there’s a option on Miles for the ’11-12, the Wizards could have $25.7 million set to come off the books (Kirilenko, Stevenson & Miles). Basically, $32.6 million committed to contracts ’11-12 instead of the current $40.3 million.
Would the Jazz save $$?
Well, the Jazz could either keep the incoming parts for a playoff push, or they could trade Jamison to Cleveland for Zydrunas Ilgauskas straight up, and even do it with the under-the-table understanding that they would buy out Ilgauskas so they he could eventually re-sign with Cleveland.
(Note: the only way that Jamison could be traded again so soon, under the standard two-month embargo when the 2010 trade deadline is about six weeks away, is if he’s not packaged with other players … as I understand via NBA Salary Cap FAQ. There could also be some loop-hole workarounds.)
Between Big Z, Foye and Mike James, Utah would have over $21 million coming off the books this summer and will gain Caron Butler, who has a final year contact in 2010-11 that would cost Utah around $7 million less than Kirilenko.
If Utah is adamant about getting back more for Boozer, Cleveland can send them J.J. Hickson, especially if the Jazz would intend on buying-out Ilgauskas. Thus, all players would be packaged in a three-team deal, which works on the ESPN trade machine.
Cleveland does this for obvious reasons. They want a championship and they’ve been rumored to be wanting Jamison since last year. His style of play would certainly fit with LeBron and Shaq, although he’d clearly have to sacrifice shots. I think Antawn would do that if it meant winning a championship. Although, I must say that the thought of sending Jamison to Cleveland to win a title sickens me.
Utah does it because they save a bunch of money and come out looking decent with Butler and Hickson. Caron is an upstanding citizen and who knows, maybe he would mesh better with a more traditional point guard like Deron Williams and Mehmet Okur. Plus, this trade immediately frees up more time for Paul Millsap. If you’re going to pay the man, play the man.
Washington doesn’t come out all that great, especially with having to trade two great players and community leaders like Jamison and Butler while having to keep Arenas (by the way, I’m assuming here that Arenas is untrade-able and that the Wizards will not be able to void his contract), but they don’t come out all that bad.
Kirilenko still has talent (plus taking on one more year of him at $17.8 million saves more money than three more years of Jamison/Butler at $39 million total), C.J. Miles is young, and Boozer could keep the Wizards in the weak Eastern conference playoff race.
Maybe the Wizards are giving up too much, and maybe they don’t have much of a choice. Who knows. It’s just an idea.
There could be several tweaks to a trade between these three teams, such as Jamison and Oberto heading to Cleveland; Ilgauskas, Butler, James and Foye heading to Utah; and Boozer, Hickson and Kirilenko heading to Washington. This tweak certainly fares better for the Wizards. Draft picks could also factor into the fairness of any deal.