Here's a link to a report from sporting news which explains that the Rockets are entertaining thoughts of aquiring the struggling but talented point guard, Baron Davis, from the Clippers. The article mentions the possibility that T-Mac could be included in this deal, and I immediatly explored some ideas on ESPN NBA Trade Machine. Here's what I came up with:
Houston Trades- G T. McGrady ($20 mill/2 years), G R. Alston ($5 mill/2 years), and F C. Hayes ($2 mill/2 years)
Los Angeles Trades- G B. Davis ($11 mill/5 years) and F Z. Randolph ($15 mill/3 years)
This deal would provide Houston with two explosive scorers to fill the point guard and power forward positions. Although both Davis and Randolph are headcases, when healthy, they have the ability to take over games.
Randolph gives the Rockets an additional low-post scorer to ease the pressure on Yao and a accomplished passing and shooting big man (ala Chris Webber) to fit in nicely with Rick Aldeman's system.
Davis is a point guard who can push the tempo and take over in late-game situations. I think that his production would increase under Aldeman's guidance, as opposed to Dunleavey who overcoaches and keeps Baron on a tight leash.
I realize that this deal ties up the Rocket's cap space down the road, but Houston is built to contend this year, and this trade puts them in a position to do just that. The deal provides the Rockets with two all-star caliber players still in their primes, while giving up very little (McGrady is only going to decline, if he can even get on the court after microfracture knee surgery, while Alston is barely a servicable starter and Hayes struggles to get playing time). Here's the Rockets adjusted rotation:
PG Starter-Baron Davis, Backup-Aaron Brooks, 3rd-Luther Head
SG Starter-Von Wafer, Backup-Brent Berry, 3rd-Luther Head
SF Starter-Ron Artest, Backup-Shane Battier
PF Starter-Zach Randolph, Backup-Carl Landry, 3rd-Joey Dorsey
C Starter-Yao Ming, Backup-Luis Scola, 3rd-Dikembe Mutombo
The Clippers might have to deal with some critisism from their shrinking fan base after this trade, but many think that Davis and Randolph are simply holding back the development of young guns Eric Gordon and Al Thornton. At 13-42, the Clips are heading towards a top-five pick in this summer's draft.
The aquisitions of Davis and Randolph have not helped the bleak situation, and owner Donald Sterling has shifted back into cost-cutting mode. The players that they would recieve in return have contracts that will expire by the summer of 2010, as does Marcus Camby and his $10 mill per year deal. This would provide the Clips with loads of cap space to sign Gordon and Thornton to multiyear deals and pursue a quality free-agent big man (can you say Amare) looking for a bigger market.
Although the actual players that Los Angeles aquires will not contribute significantly, barring a comeback from T-Mac, the financial benefits of this deal is simply too good to pass up on. Here's the Clippers adjusted rotation:
PG Starter-Rafer Alston, Backup-Mardy Collins, 3rd-Jason Hart
SG Starter-Eric Gordon, Backup-Fred Jones, 3rd-Ricky Davis
SF Starter-Al Thornton, Backup-Steve Novak, 3rd-Ricky Davis
PF Starter-Marcus Camby, Backup-Chuck Hayes, 3rd-Brian Skinner
C Starter-Chris Kamen, Backup-DeAndre Jordon
Please read it over and tell me what you think.