The Jae Crowder trade makes sense from a salary cap perspective. Crowder is making less than half of what Hood may get as a free agent, and he's locked in for 2 1/2 more years. I wonder though how high of a draft pick could we have gotten for Rodney Hood. I would have been happy for a pick in the high teens, and ok for a pick in the low 20's. Only Jazz management knows how high of a draft pick was being offered by the reported 20 teams that contacted us about Hood. Whatever it was, they liked Jae Crowder better.
This confused me at first because I had hoped we would use this draft pick, coupled with our own draft pick, to trade up in this year's draft (I had been thinking about this since it looked like the Jazz's draft pick would be a top-10 pick). However, I've come to the conclusion that because of our recent winning streak, we don't have the ammunition to land a top-six draft pick, which is where we'd want to be. Why a top six pick? Because this draft is really stacked at the top and has an amazing six (possibly seven) players that project to be future superstars. There's obviously no guarantee that they will, but the odds of these six players becoming superstars are far higher than finding one later in the draft. For every Donovan Mitchell found in the mid-teens of the draft, there's 15 Trey Lyles'.
So, here's my math. Please comment if you disagree, I know I'm not an expert. If our own pick ends up being the 16th pick, and we could have gotten the 22nd pick for Hood (I had to pick a # here), I think it's reasonable to assume we could find a partner to give us their pick in the low teens, like around #12. If we coupled that pick with our next year's pick, I think we possibly could have gotten a pick in the 9-10 range. That's a few spots short of where we'd want to be, and certainly not worth trading 3 draft picks to get there. Plus, other teams are aware of how valuable those top six picks are. In order to move up from 9th to even just the 6th pick, we would have to offer something we either don't have or something we're not willing to part with. Because of that, I think the Jazz made the right move. This isn't a deep draft like last years was and unless we get lucky, Jae Crowder will probably be better for us than a pick in the low 20's would be. This is especially true if he plays like he did in Boston.