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The top 5 NBA players who need to be traded

  • Andy Flint

The 2012 NBA trade deadline is March 15th and with just a little more than a month to go before all bets are off and few players are safe, let’s take a look at five players that need a change of scenery.

#5: Chris Kaman, Center, New Orleans Hornets

The often-injured, but skilled, seven-footer who fell victim in the Los Angeles Clippers’ pursuit of Chris Paul is probably one of the most likely trade candidates on the market right now. Kaman is a more-than-solid starting center by NBA standards (when healthy) and could likely garner the rebuilding Hornets a decent valued player or pick.

Kaman is a polished offensive player with great feet and good shot-blocking ability on the defensive end. Health has been the largest hurdle in Kaman’s eight year professional career, but he is just two seasons removed from starting in 76 games and averaging 18.5 ppg and 9.3 rpg.

Kaman has an expiring $14 million dollar deal and should prove to draw value from teams looking for a skilled veteran big man and those looking to shed cap at the end of the season.

#4: Monta Ellis, Shooting Guard/Point Guard, Golden State Warriors

This is one that Warriors fans will hate, but it has to be addressed. The combo of Monta Ellis and Stephen Curry is similar to only having three men on the court on every defensive possession. While Curry can create for his teammates as more of a facilitator, and Ellis can create by penetrating and kicking out,  the combo just doesn’t work. Add that to the Warriors playing David Lee as a Center and the mess continues to pile up.

I like Ellis and Curry as players, I just don’t like the way they work together. Sure, the scoring is nice, but beyond that it’s like a marriage in which the wife knows that the husband is cheating, but keeps her mouth shut for the sake of the kids. That is until she’s had too much to drink. This whole situation is like a bomb waiting to go off.

I call out Monta because Curry is younger and I’m not sure GS is ready to part with him this soon in his career. Plus I’m not sure he’d fetch the same value right now, being that his ankle has sent out red flags all over the league.

#3: Steve Nash, Point Guard, Phoenix Suns

Steve Nash has been nothing but brilliant for an organization that has seemingly given up all hope of winning a ring with Nash in town. So why not deal him for pennies on the dollar out of respect? You won’t hear this type of request out of me often, but Nash just turned 37 years old and may have one or two good seasons left in him.

Nash has been a stand up guy for the Suns over the past eight seasons and he deserves to be put into a situation where he can compete for his first championship. Nash becomes an unrestricted free agent at the end of this season, the Suns have absolutely no shot of competing this year, and the chances of Steve Nash resigning are lower than that of hitting a Royal Flush four times in a row.

If you’re team like the Knicks, Magic, or Lakers, there is no good reason why your General Manager shouldn’t be giving the Suns brass weekly calls about Nash. After all, asking couldn’t hurt.

#2: Amar’e Stoudemire, Power Forward, New York Knickerbockers

Isn’t it time that we all just admit that Carmelo Anthony and Amar’e Stoudemire make about as much sense as mowing your lawn in six-feet of snow? Chauncey Billups really proved how valuable he was to the Knicks. But they figured another rebounder was more important than keeping around a veteran point guard who could control the flow of a game and keep two ball-stoppers happy and productive.

I like what Tyson Chandler is doing right now because I feel like every team needs an asset like him, but it’s to no avail. You have a collection of Carmelo, Toney Douglas and Mike Bibby’s corpse initiating the Knicks offense, and it just can NOT work. Although, we’re starting to see what Jeremy Lin can do now. Maybe he can continue to be the real deal and revive Amar’e in NY, because right now he’s drowning.

The issue I hear when it comes to trading Stoudemire is that a lot of NBA GM’s are scared as heck to gamble on his knees (or lack thereof). Amar’e and his banged up knees could be a scenario to watch. Maybe the Knicks should trade Carmelo? I doubt they ever would. How what about Amar’e, Chandler, Shumpert and Fields for Dwight Howard, Hedo Turkoglu and they take back either Chris Duhon or Q-Rich? The money makes sense and it works for both teams in the big picture. If the Knicks can figure out a way to convince Hedo to not pick up his player option at the end of the season then they’d likely have the cash to add Deron Williams in free agency.

#1: Dwight Howard, Center, Orlando Magic

If Otis Smith wants to keep Howard in Orlando and he wants to keep his job, maybe he should get on the horn with Phoenix and have a little conversation. It should start like this:

Remember that time when I gift-wrapped you a promising young center (Marcin Gortat) in trade for two washed up bums with HUGE contracts (Jason Richardson and Hed Turkoglu)? Now I’d really appreciate it if you’d take Turkoglu back and we’ll toss in Jameer Nelson and a 2012 first rounder for your rebuilding process. You just give us Nash, who isn’t resigning anyways and we’ll take Josh Childress and the four years remaining on his deal.

Gortat is your future and you’d be pairing him with a lesser point guard, who has more years left than Nash and Gortat is familiar with. Plus you get cap room if you can convince Turk to not pick up that option I discussed before. Now I know what you’re thinking. Nash has $11 million expiring after this season, but it’s a wash if you get Turk to not pick up that option, and trust me, he doesn’t want to play in Phoenix anymore than you Suns fans want him there. Plus they gain Jameer Nelson and a 1st rounder, free of charge.

$11 Million in cap, Jameer Nelson and a middle 1st round pick for Josh Childress sounds like a steal to me.

If you’re Orlando, this still doesn’t guarantee anything. Maybe you just lost a 1st rounder and Jameer Nelson for Steve Nash who will sign elsewhere after the season and Dwight Howard who will do the same. But, Howard is gone either way. So why not risk a 1st rounder and Jameer Nelson for for a chance to keep Howard and gain Nash’s last two seasons?

Nash won’t just compliment Howard. He’ll turn all of those long-distance shooters into more efficient long-distance shooters. He’ll put more butts in those nice, new, shiny seats and he’ll add a much-needed elite point guard status to a team that could contend with just a bit of help.


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Andy Flint

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