There’s nothing like a major trade to jolt us out of our routines. It’s mid-December, and things were starting to get a little monotonous. Now we have the ballsy Otis Smith, GM of Orlando, gutting the roster of a title-contending team with two monster deals. The fantasy landscape is turned on its head. It’s time to examine the fallout across the rosters of the Magic, Wizards and Suns, I’ll Be Damned-style.
This week, I’m naturally very damned by the following deals and their fallout:
Washington trades Gilbert Arenas to Orlando for Rashard Lewis
Phoenix trades Jason Richardson, Hedo Turkoglu and Earl Clark to Orlando for Vince Carter, Mickael Pietrus, Marcin Gortat and a 1st-round pick
I’ll be damned if…
…Orlando doesn’t regret this.
As a fan of the Boston Celtics, I must say that I’m pretty happy that Dwight Howard has no backup center and that killer perimeter defender/dagger-three-point-shooter Pietrus is out of our hair. The Magic are hoping the, ahem, magic of Turkoglu running the offense circa 2009 fire up this team again. Positives: switching out Carter and Lewis for Richardson and Turkoglu is a wash at best and probably helpful. Of course, Arenas is such a flake that he could single-handedly screw this whole thing up. Advantage: Celtics and Heat.
…Nick Young isn’t breaking out the champagne.
Young Gun, as I’m now calling him, is a gunner. He’ll do his best Arenas impression and fire away at will now that he’s the starting shooting guard. He had already been going nuts before the Arenas left (22.5 PPG in previous four games before the trade), and he’s likely to be a fantasy factor the rest of the way. Young hits some threes and shoots a high percentage at the line, but he really doesn’t do much else in terms of rebounds, assists, blocks or steals. His line Monday night was a perfect representation of him: 21 points, three 3-pointers, and just two boards, one assist and zero blocks or steals.
…Kirk Hinrich isn’t a big beneficiary here.
Hinrich is certainly a short-term stud with John Wall still on the shelf for at least another week and possibly a lot longer. Hinrich dropped an 18-6-11 on Charlotte Monday and is going to be counted on heavily with Wall out. When Wall returns his value will take a hit for sure. I’d still expect about 30 minutes a game with around 12 points and five assists a game.
…Gortat becomes a shallow-league fantasy option.
With Robin Lopez back from injury and Channing Frye playing pretty well, Gortat is looking at a timeshare, most likely. He could average 8-10 points, 6-8 boards and a block or so, but I’m not dropping anyone good for him.
…Vince Carter doesn’t get improve after this change of scenery.
Vinsanity is not just his nickname. It is what any GM who’d add him to their team is suffering from. But Phoenix did this to save money and to make Steve Nash really, really sad. Vince will find playing with Nash to be right up his alley, and the lack of scoring big men on Phoenix (or, really, any legit scorers) will allow Carter to hoist terrible shots that sometimes go in at will. I expect his scoring average to jump several points, and while the Suns will be a hideous team now that he’s on it, he may be motivated by the meaningless numbers he’s now free to proliferate.
…Dwight Howard doesn’t need more help up front.
More deals are coming for Orlando. The Magic can’t go with just Howard, Brandon Bass and Malik Allen. Some strangeness on the Dwight front: Did you know he is ranked 198th by Yahoo!’s statistical ratings? I knew those free throws dragged him down, but that is insane. You can certainly thank his 55.3 FT% on 11.8 attempts, but you also have to consider his 3.5 turnovers per game. Still insane. There’s something wrong with rankings that tell me it has been better to have guys like Andres Nocioni, Eddie House, Jason Smith and Vladimir Radmanovic than Howard on your fantasy team this year.
…Bass himself doesn’t finally become a fantasy factor.
He just needs 35 minutes. Come on, Stan Van Gundy. I actually think Van Gundy won’t have the patience to play Arenas for huge minutes, and that he’ll stick with Bass as the power forward. I’m a little worried that Van Gunday will surround Howard with guards and small forwards, but against any teams with strong frontcourts they will need Bass. He had 13 points and five rebounds in 31 minutes Monday night at Atlanta. He could average a 14 & 7 with strong percentages if the playing time is right.
I’ll Be Damned is a weekly column Jeff Andriesse writes for money… or candy. Follow Jeff on Twitter or email him using the Contact Us form at the top of the site.