I want to start off by saying I really respect the Jazz and how they managed to inch past the Suns and make the playoffs last season; I really doubted the Jazz and was skeptical about whether or not they would even be a threat in the West. As stated above, I am indeed a Suns fan and ever since I was little I always fantasized about becoming a GM and thus explains my hobby of always tinkering with the trade machine. I always formulate trades on my spare time and I try to post the ideas that I think are good on other team's websites as to get a little bit of feedback. Before I play with the machine however, I try my best to be objective and see how a trade impacts long term flexibility; I try to emulate General Manager Status as best as I can which is why I do a little bit of research on the teams and how the fans feel about trading such players. Now that my auto-biography is through kindly hit the jump and inspect the proposed trade.
The Jazz Receive: Kevin Martin, Chandler Parsons, Channing Frye, Sebastian Telfair, Wesley Johnson as well as a combination of draft picks from the Suns (Who have 6 first round picks in the next three years), and the Hawks
The Jazz: They do this deal to clear up playing time for their younger bigs; Frye can play both the center and power forward position off the bench and is a solid defender and rebounder. The Jazz had middle of the pack contributions forms its small forward position in terms of scoring, bottom ten in rebounding, middle of the pack in FG% and dead last in 3PT%. Overall as a team, the Jazz shot an abysmal 31.7% from deep which allowed opposing teams to clog the paint and that obviously hurt the Jazz in terms of scoring and efficiency. By adding Frye, Martin, and Parsons the Jazz address their issues on the wing as well as their inability to shoot it from deep; in the process they also dump Williams' atrocious contract and get some draft picks in return. Telfair is an expiring contract and he played very well towards he end of last season whereas Johnson has a team option that is not likely to be exercised but does not necessarily mean he cannot be re-signed. Johnson is looking to make a case as to why he deserves another contract after two pretty awful seasons in the NBA so that is something to watch out for. In any event, the Jazz open up the front lines for their young guns and add some intriguing prospects as well as draft picks as they march back towards relevancy.
The Rockets do this deal because they missed out on the Dwight Howard and Andrew Bynum sweepstakes and currently have nothing to show for it. The two incoming players would be a breath of fresh air given that both Smith and Gortat are on the heels of all-star worthy seasons; one might ask how Nash leaving might affect Gortat but by looking at his per 36 minute stats, his scoring numbers have been constant for the majority of his playing career which bodes well in the future. It is also important to note that when combining the contracts of Gortat and Smith the result is equivalent to paying the same for one Dwight Howard; the Rockets are essentially getting to very good players for the price of one. To make this deal possible however they need to absorb Williams' contract, which is not the worst thing in the world given that Williams is a solid contributor and has played with Smith for the duration of his entire career. The Rockets also get Burks as they don't have any more two guards beyond Martin and Lamb; Burks is a good player on a cheap contract and that is all that matters.
The Hawks show their dedication to Horford by acquiring a Center; Horford has been playing out of position at the Five since he entered the NBA and with the Hawks trading for Jefferson it shows their commitment to build around Horford. In addition to that, the Hawks get a super athletic Shannon Brown to play the two guard; Brown also played very well down the stretch as the Suns made their playoffs push. On top of that, Brown's contract is partially guaranteed in the second season for 1.75 million dollars, which means if the Hawks are not happy with Brown's play they can cut him and be done with that. It is also important to note how many contracts will come off the books by season's end; the only contracts guaranteed past this season Brown, Stevenson, Lou Williams, John Jenkins, and Al Horford. The Hawks maintain financial flexibility and can finally play Horford at his natural position at the four. The Hawks can throw bags of money at whichever free agent they desire and are able to add a nice long-term piece in Jefferson.
The Suns do this deal so that they can squeeze some value out of Gortat before he inevitably leaves for free agency. Gortat's contract is up in two seasons and given the dearth of big men currently on the market I believe it is a foregone conclusion that a team will offer him a max contract; the parameters of which I am currently uncertain of at this point in time. With that being said, the Suns are going through with a rebuilding project and what better way to do that than by accumulating young and talented assets. In this deal the Suns not only burn of cap space as they are gaining back only 5.3 million dollars in guaranteed cap space past this season but they will have cleared the way so as to pursue a max free agent in a couple seasons. The Suns gain assets and cap space, two very important aspects in the rebuilding process. One thing is for certain, for me at least, both Motiejunas and Lamb are NBA ready prospects and could serve the Suns very well in the near future.
So there you have it folks, please comment and tell me what you think; especially if you think I am a bonehead and should be embarrassed by what I have just written.