I read Kawakami's trade proposal that the Warriors should try and trade David Lee and possibly Barnes to the Cavs for Luol Deng and Waiters(would have to be two separate trades as they can't trade Deng quite yet). The idea behind this is that if we can trade David Lee's contract for expiring contracts(that can also help us win now) we'll have enough cap room to either chase a potential all-star in the next year or two, or be able to sign a bunch of quality role players with the money. While I like the idea of trading David Lee to a team like the Cavs, I think we could get better value for him. Here's my trade proposal as well as some thoughts on this upcoming offseason...
Dubs trade: David Lee, Speights, Bazemore, and Kuzmic
Nets get: David Lee, Speights, Bazemore
Cleveland trades: Luol Deng, 2015 1st (MIA), 2014 2nd (ORL)
Cleveland gets: Brook Lopez, Kuzmic
Lakers trade: Steve Blake, Nick Young
Lakers get: 2015 1st (MIA via CLE)
Why each team does this
Warriors: The Warriors would dump David Lee's large contract which is blocking our team's future cap flexibility. We also dump Speights who has been a complete bust, and we throw in Bazemore and Kuzmic for salary cap reasons as well as to be able to open enough roster spots for the incoming players. As for what the lineup would look like after the trade, we would probably start Curry, Thompson, Iggy, Deng, and Bogut together and have 4 floor spacing perimeter players to go with Bogut. As a plus Deng is obviously a much better defender than Lee and is strong enough to guard most power forwards. I think our starting lineup would be just as good if not better, but our bench would go from a liability to a real strength. Adding Steve Blake, Nick Young, and even Reggie Evans would give us valuable bench players for the home stretch of the season as well as the playoffs. Blake would allow us to run two point guard lineups with Curry much more frequently to allow him to play off the ball, Nick Young could be our microwave off the bench, and can you imagine the intimidation factor of even 5-10 minutes a night of a Green-Evans-Bogut front court? As another small plus we get what should be a 2nd round pick somewhere in the 31-36 range via the trade.
Nets: The Nets have a James Bond villain as their owner, and I don't really think he's looking ahead to the future. He wants to win now and this trade gives the Nets at least a small chance they could challenge the Pacers & the Heat in the playoffs. Lopez is out for the season and Lee would fit in perfectly in between Pierce and Garnett in the front court. Speights only has one more year left on his contract and they can probably flip him for a better player with an extra year or two on his contract over the offseason. Bazemore is just a throw in and could go to any of the other 3 teams if Brooklyn doesn't want him.
Cleveland: Barring a miracle they won't make the playoffs and they will lose Deng for nothing in a couple of months. Trading a future 1st round pick(and giving Chicago the right to swap 1st's next year) along with a pair of seconds for Deng was stupid, but they can at least salvage most of that value by paring Irving with another young all-star This trade allows them to start selling off some assets and preparing to tank the last 25-30 games of the season to allow them to have Lopez and a top 7 or 8 pick waiting to join Irving next off season. They'll still have as many as two first round picks next year(Memphis's protected pick) so trading a 2nd round pick and what will likely be a very late 1st rounder for Lopez is worth it.
Lakers: The Lakers do this to dump some salary(to try and get under the luxury tax) and to get a future 1st round pick(Phoenix owns their 1st round pick next year from the Nash trade). Theoretically the Warriors could cut them out of the trade and keep the future 1st for themselves, but they'll have to decide how important 2 very good bench players are, even if they'd just be rentals.
Just as a follow up, if the Warriors made this trade they'd be like 200-300,000 over the luxury tax, and would have to deal one of their players to make sure they'll have the full 5 million dollar mid level exception next year instead of about 3.2 million. One idea would be to dump Marshon Brooks on the Sixers either for free or the late 2nd round pick they own from Houston. Rebuilding teams under the cap like Milwaukee, Utah, and Orlando might also be willing to either take him on for free or give up a 2nd round pick so we could get under the tax.
Warriors lineup after the 4 team trade(and dumping Brooks and his salary)
Pg: Curry, Blake, Crawford, Nedovic
Sg: Thompson, Young
Sf: Iggy, Barnes
Pf: Deng, Green, Evans
C: Bogut, O'neal, Ezeli
2014-2015 guaranteed salary assuming we pick up Draymond Green's team option and Nick Young turns down his $1.2 million player option.
Pg: Curry: $10,629,213, Nedovic: $1,104,240
Sg: Thompson $4,469,547
SF: Iguodala: $ 12,289,544, Barnes: $ 3,049,920
PF: Green: $915,243, Evans: $1,768,654
C: Bogut: $12,000,000(might be off by a few hundred thousand, couldn't find the exact number on him), Ezeli: $1,112,880
2014-2015 guaranteed salary: $47,339,241
That would give us approximately $12.5-13.5 million in cap room depending on the exact salary cap for next season(it's supposed to be around 60-61 million with the luxury tax at about 75 million I believe). We would also have a $5,000,000 Mid Level Exception to use on a player(s).
This would allow us to either re-sign Deng to a long term contract, or try and lure one of the other "2nd tier" free agents. Here are the potential free agents we could look at...
1) Eric Bledsoe(restricted free agent): We could try and sign Bledsoe to a large 4 year 50-55 million dollar offer sheet, and force Phoenix to either let him go or match it. This would probably move Curry to the off guard spot and Thompson to the 6th man role. Bledsoe is super athletic and has proved he can start and thrive alongside another point guard(Dragic).
2) Re-sign Luol Deng- If we made the big trade to dump Lee and Deng played well, we could always just re-sign him and allow him to be our stretch 4 of the future.
3) Lance Stephenson(restricted free agent): He would also likely move Thompson to a 6th man role, but would be worth it as he is a lock down defender, great rebounder, and much improved facilitator. It would take at least $10 million to have a chance at stealing him from the Pacers.
4) Evan Turner(restricted free agent): He's probably going to get traded before the deadline, but even if he does he'd be perfect for the Warriors for many reasons. For one he can play point guard through small forward offensively, and when he's giving his full effort he's a very solid defender who can guard the 1-4 spots. He also loves Iguodala and apparently really likes Mark Jackson so this isn't much of a stretch like the 2 restricted free agents above. He'd cost anywhere from 6.5-8.5 million a year and would probably come off the bench as a 6th man.
5) Re-sign Nick Young: In this scenario we also had Nick Young as a rental, and could probably keep him for a 3 year 12-16 million dollar extension.
There are also plenty of solid free agents to be had for cheap if we'd rather go the quantity over quality approach with guys like Ramon Sessions, Isiah Thomas, Mo Williams, Hawes, Vasquez, Ariza etc...
Anyway that's just some of my ideas. Tell me which ones you like/don't like