Hey Piston fans, I'm hoping you can help me out with some research. I'm putting together a post for the BlazersEdge blog where I've looked at the past 15 years of NBA history for a case study that can help us determine whether trading Lamarcus Aldridge (LMA), an all-star in his prime (28 years old) with 2 years left on a reasonable contract and who one ESPN analyst just called the best PF in the NBA (http://espn.go.com/nba/story/_/page/5-on-5-PF-130807/debating-nba-power-forwards), is a good idea. Given how stacked we are now with young talent (Lillard, Batum, McCollum, Leonard, Robinson...), the idea is whether to try and create a "championship window" around those players.
The closest comparison I've found is the Grizzlies
trading Pau Gasol
to the Lakers
in 2008. The Grizzlies featured several great prospects at the time (Mike Conley
, Rudy Gay
, Kyle Lowry, Stromile Swift
...) but were a bottom-half team with one all-star in his prime (Gasol was 27 years old). Gasol's 2007-08 stats are almost identical to LMA's 2012-13 line and yet they traded him for draft picks and prospects to better suit their young core...and it worked out for both teams involved.
For Pau, the Lakers gave up Javaris Crittenton
, Aaron McKie
(for salary purposes), Kwame Brown
($9M expiring contract) and 1st round picks in 2008 (Donte Green, later traded for Darrell Arthur
who was just traded along with a 2nd round pick for Kosta Koufus) and 2010 (Grievis Vasquez who was traded for Quincy Pondexter
) and ofcourse, the rights to Marc Gasol
...which really worked out for the Grizz.
My question to Detroit fans, is whether you (assuming you are now in "win-now" mode with Smith and Jennings and two talented Centers) would trade a highly talented prospect (and likely future all-star - Drummond) along with an expiring contract (Villenueva) for two years to seriously contend for a title with Monroe/LMA/Smith/Billups/Jennings?
Detroit is kind of in the same situation as Houston right now with a win-now mentality, but with a very talented Center on the bench and a noticable gap in their starting five (PF for Houston, PF or SF depending on where Smith plays in Detroit)
And just for reference, don't even bother asking if we'd trade LMA for Monroe/Villenueva. He may be an all-star at some point down the road, but it's certainly not a lock. Not enough value for a two-time all-star (probably 3 after this year) in his prime.
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