Another trade deadline comes and another deadline goes. Year after year, many basketball nerds sit at their computer hitting the refresh button to see if any trades have been announced on deadline day and the days preceding it to see which of the NBA’s big names will be swapping uniforms.
This week’s Standing 10 will break down and analyze the best trade deadline deals of the past ten years. Most of these trades happened on deadline day, but some happened in the week leading up to it.
10) 2005: Atlanta traded Antoine Walker to Boston for Gary Payton, Tom Gugliotta, Michael Stewart, and a 1st round draft pick in 2005 or 2006
The Antoine Walker project in Atlanta was a huge failure, so the Hawks traded him back to the team where he was the Robin to Paul Pierce’s Batman. That experiment was also a huge failure and just like the first time Danny Ainge refused to offer Walker an extension and traded him, Ainge once again refused to offer Walker an extension and traded him.
Walker is now an overpaid member of the Miami Heat playing the Green Lantern to Shaq’s Superman and Dwyane Wade’s Flash.
I hope that this analogy did not contain too many DC Comic references and that you get the gist that history keeps repeating itself in the life of Antoine Walker.
9) 1998: Toronto traded Damon Stoudamire, Walt Williams, and Carlos Rogers to Portland for Kenny Anderson, Alvin Williams, Gary Trent, Portland's 1998 1st round draft pick, New York's 1998 1st round draft pick (lottery protected), and cash.
And five days later:
Toronto traded Kenny Anderson, Popeye Jones, and Zan Tabak to Boston for Chauncey Billups, Dee Brown, John Thomas, and Roy Rogers.
On the same day the Raptors traded their first ever franchise player, their coach Darrell Walker stepped down as coach. Stoudamire, affectionately known to Raptors fans as Mighty Mouse turned his back on the franchise that he had built up to that point and on that very day, Kenny Anderson - the player who he was traded for - did the same thing.
Days later, the Raptors acquired Chauncey Billups, a current MVP candidate, who did very little for the Raptors organization and was later traded to the Denver Nuggets . At the time, I remember Rick Pitino’s children were mad at him because they loved Billups, which should hopefully convince the Knicks that hiring one of Pitino’s children may be the way to go if they want to rebuild their franchise and gauge future talents.
8) 2002: Dallas traded Juwan Howard, Tim Hardaway, Donnell Harvey, their 2002 1st round draft pick, and $1 million to Denver for Raef LaFrentz, Nick Van Exel, Avery Johnson, and Tariq Abdul-Wahad.
This trade looks unimportant on paper, but it was the trade that paved the way for the future of the Nuggets organization. At the time, the franchise players for the Nuggets were LaFrentz, Van Exel and the oft-injured Antonio McDyess. Both Van Exel and LaFrentz were traded in this deal for the huge expiring contract of Juwan Howard and a pick that would be packaged with McDyess for Marcus Camby and Nene, both of whom remain on the team to this day. This trade was a huge part of the brilliant rebuilding job that Kiki Vandeweghe achieved with the Nuggets.
7) 2006: Orlando traded Steve Francis to New York for Anfernee Hardaway and Trevor Ariza.
This trade is still up in the air in terms of how it plays out. While Isiah Thomas has been chastised for making this trade, keep in mind that he got a 28 year old, three-time all-star who is entering his prime for a large expiring contract and a young player who did not get along with their coach.
Of course, also keep in mind that Francis is nearly identical to their current franchise player Stephon Marbury and plays best with the ball in his hand similarly to three of the other Knicks backcourt stars. It also continues the Knicks habit of overspending for underachieving players.
6) 1996: TRADE: Miami traded Kevin Willis and Bimbo Coles to Golden State for Tim Hardaway and Chris Gatling.
Before you judge this entry, go back to the year 1996. The year that they made this trade, they finished just over .500. The following year Tim Hardaway became a first time all-star and the team won 61 games. The year after that, Hardaway made the all-NBA first team averaging 20.6 points-per-game and 8.6 assists-per-game.
Hardaway and a healthy Alonzo Mourning combined for a very dangerous duo and made the Heat one of the league’s top teams.
5) 2004: Atlanta traded away Rasheed Wallace and received
Zeljko Rebraca, Bob Sura, Chris Mills, and Milwaukee's 2004 1st round draft pick (lottery protected); Detroit traded away Zeljko Rebraca, Bob Sura, Lindsey Hunter, Chucky Atkins, their 1st 2004 round draft pick, Milwaukee's 2004 1st round draft pick (obtained in a previous trade), and $3,000,000; and received Rasheed Wallace and Mike James; and Boston traded away Mike James and Chris Mills and received Chucky Atkins, Lindsey Hunter, Detroit's 2004 1st round draft pick, and $3,000,000. None of the traded players played in Thursday's games.
The Pistons essentially traded expiring contracts and a first round selection for Rasheed Wallace. Wallace has been a charismatic leader for the Pistons who has been instrumental in their 2004-2005 championship victory and Eastern Conference dominance.
Wallace donned a Hawks jersey for a single game throughout the ordeal and the Hawks didn’t even get a first rounder for him, as it was sent to the Celtics for helping complete the trade.
That trade may go down as the best trade deadline move that the Pistons will ever make.
4) 2005: New Orleans traded Baron Davis to Golden State for Speedy Claxton, Dale Davis, and cash.
Another bargain basement deal is this trade, where the Warriors recuperated from losing Gilbert Arenas to free agency by acquiring Baron Davis for straight up expiring contracts in one of the most lopsided trades in deadline day history.
Davis has been healthy for most of the 2005-2006 season and is averaging 18.7 points-per-game, 9.2 assists-per-game and 4.5 rebounds-per-game on one of the league’s most exciting teams.
General Manager Chris Mullin seems devoted to get the Warriors to the playoffs and reportedly was after Ron Artest during the time where he had demanded a trade from the Indiana Pacers .
Davis and Jason Richardson will likely be the two faces of the Warriors franchise for years to come.
3) 2005: Sacramento traded Chris Webber, Matt Barnes, and Michael Bradley to Philadelphia for Kenny Thomas, Corliss Williamson, and Brian Skinner.
Last season’s deadline blockbuster saw the overpaid, underachieving, often injured franchise player of the Kings head to the 76ers at a bargain basement price. Webber has since taken a backseat to Allen Iverson, who has been the face of the Sixers since he was drafted and has always needed a right-hand man like Webber, who he gets along with and compliments his game.
The Kings are now rebuilding on the fly around Mike Bibby and recently acquired Ron Artest, but since trading Webber have simply not been the force that they used to. The 76ers are likely Webber’s last chance to prove himself as a difference-maker in the NBA, as his career has been considered a disappointment by many.
2) 1999: Minnesota traded away Stephon Marbury, Chris Carr, Bill Curley, and Paul Grant and received Terrell Brandon, Brian Evans, and a New Jersey 1st round draft pick; New Jersey traded away Sam Cassell, Chris Gatling, Brian Evans, a 1st round draft picks and received Stephon Marbury, Bill Curley, Elliot Perry, and Chris Carr; and Milwaukee traded away Terrell Brandon and Elliot Perry and received Sam Cassell, Chris Gatling, and Paul Grant.
The Timberwolves traded an up and coming Marbury to the Nets for Terrell Brandon and a 1st round pick. It may appear lopsided, but Brandon averaged 17.1 points per game and 8.9 assists per game, along with nearly two steals per game in his first full season with the Wolves. Before a career-ending injury, which Brandon has never fully recovered from, basketball fans must remember how good of a player he was.
Kevin Garnett and Marbury had some sort of falling out, but have made amends since. Marbury would inevitably be traded from the Nets in a deal that landed them Jason Kidd who has been their consistent franchise player ever since and has taken them to the NBA Finals on two separate occasions.
1) 2003: Seattle traded Gary Payton and Desmond Mason to Milwaukee for Ray Allen, Kevin Ollie, Ronald Murray, and a conditional 1st round draft pick.
Two players hoping for big extensions from their respective teams found new homes on that day. Both players were loyal to their teams, never donning another team jersey up until the day that they swapped places. Payton was the Sonics franchise and wanted a big money extension from the team that he had taken to the NBA Finals, but they turned their back on him. Payton would sign for the mid-level exception in hopes of winning a championship with the Lakers after his short stint with the Bucks.
Allen, on the contrary, had an MVP-calibre 2004-2005 season and was given the big extension that he wanted from Seattle, who have suffered ever-since. Allen is most likely the best shooter in the NBA, but it would not be surprising to see him shopped by the Sonics in the upcoming offseason