Friday, February 23, 2007

You cannot be serious. It's been one of those weeks.

I stayed up last night writing my Grizzlies Opus. I woke up this morning and it is gone. Completely gone. I left it pulled up on blogger, went to bed, and then when I get up this morning its gone. No recovery options, nothing. No internet explorer windows even open. I think I am gonna throw up. I will re-write it this weekend and have it up for Monday. If I ever off myself, it will be a reaction to a computer.

Maybe a few of you came to read the masterpiece, and I apologize.

For this morning, I will comment on something else on my mind. Yesterday I talked about how all I have heard for the past 3 years is "if you don't think Gasol is worth a max-deal, put him on the market and there will be 29 other teams that would love to take it on." Chris Herrington took exception to me saying that not being able to deal Gasol speaks to what other teams think about him. He says (and then others repeat on their own shows) that stars are not traded for value. Is it an indictment of Allen Iverson or Vince Carter, etc? Good point... and worth examination.

First things first... we know what was declined (from reports) for Gasol. A possible Boston deal and a possible Chicago deal were pretty well documented. So yes, if those teams were not willing to lose players like Al Jefferson or Luol Deng, along with some cap relief and a pick, I think that speaks to what Gasol is worth to another team. So its a little different with this situation because we knew of some of the possible deals, and that the other teams were the ones that said no... not the Grizzlies (according to Rick Bucher report). If Gasol is so great, why would teams not be willing to do these deals? Last year I heard "the columnist" (he won't acknowledge me and the numerous things he hears on my show, so I will not acknowledge him.. hahaha) say that there were not 10 guys in the league he would trade for Pau. So I will tell you that I admittedly probably take the other side in an exaggerated fashion to combat this type of nonsense from the Pau fan club.

I decided that I was going to investigate what good players were traded for (instead of just accepting the blanket statement that it is hard to get value). I at least wanted to find out. The exact players brought up were Carter and Iverson and was it an indictment of them that teams did not give "equal value" for them? It needs to be mentioned that both Carter and Iverson demanded trades. Demanded. The teams had to deal them (you can say that they did not, but come on). Those teams were put in a bad spot by these players and the league knew the deal with these guys, so you get what you can. There is a difference to me. But who cares, lets just look at good players that were traded and what they were traded for. Let's see if you can get value for a "star".

Vince Carter was traded for Alonzo Mourning (cap), Aaron Williams, and 2 first rd picks. (Cap relief and draft picks for the future)

Allen Iverson was traded for Andre Miller, Joe Smith, and 2 first rd picks.

Elton Brand was traded for Brian Skinner and the draft rights to Tyson Chandler.

Shaquille ONeal was traded for Lamar Odom, Caron Butler, Brian Grant, and a 1st Rd pick. (Geez, looks better now that Butler is awesome)

Joe Johnson was traded for Boris Diaw and 2 first Rd picks (yikes).

Ray Allen was traded with Flip Murray, Kevin Olie, and conditional pick, for Gary Payton (expiring deal) and Desmond Mason

Tracy McGrady was traded with Tyrone Lue and Juwan Howard for Steve Francis, Cuttino Mobley, and Kelvin Cato

Shareef Abdur Rahim was traded for the rights to Pau Gasol, Brevin Knight, and Lorenzen Wright.

Peja Stojakivic (requested trade) was traded for Ron Artest.

Eddie Curry was traded with contract of Antonio Davis for Tim Thomas, Mike Sweetney, 2 first rd picks, and two second round picks.

Richard Hamilton was traded with Hubert Davis and Bobby Simmons for Jerry Stackhouse, Brian Cardinal (haaha), and Ratko Varda (who?)

Chris Webber was traded to Sixers with Matt Barnes and Michael Bradley for Kenny Thomas, Corliss Williamson, and Brian Skinner (how many deals has this guy been in, geez)

Those are some of the trades where really good/ great players have been traded. I would not say that most of these are ridiculous (total rip-offs), but that is me. After looking at these trades, I don't think you can say that you cannot get something good in return for an elite player. Equal value? Maybe not. But I don't think the Grizzlies could even get close to some of these deals for Gasol. You tell me. Even times where a guy absolutely had to be moved, teams made some sense in getting what they got in terms of gettin cap relief and multiple picks.

If you have taken the time to read this, I would love to hear your thoughts on whether it is an indictment of Gasol because the Grizzlies could not get close to fair value (unless you are from Spain , and then I don't give a damn what you think). You look at Iverson and Carter (which were the two brought up), and even the Joe Johnson deal, and you realize that even though the fantastic player was traded, the team that traded them netted themselves at least 2 first rd picks each (with either cap relief or a player).

I would have done some of the deals above and some of them I would not have done (but they, in my opinion, are not overwhelming stupid deals).

"29 teams would love to have Gasol." Well, not enough to make a rational deal for him. I think we learned that while the deals listed here were not all good deals, it is not always ridiculous to think you can get something decent in return. It is not unrealistic to think you can get some good pieces, picks, and cap relief for a "star" player. The fact that most offered deals for Gasol were categorized as "ridiculous" tells me something. Again, if he is so great, why could the team not get close to value? Are stars always traded for great value... no, but it happens. My opinion is that Pau is overvalued by the Pau-lovers, possibly overvalued by the team, but not by the "29 teams that would love to have Gasol." They don't love the idea enough to give anything reasonable to get him. Not enough to lose Luol Deng or Al Jefferson. If you cannot get something even reasonable for Pau, is it an indictment of him and his value? My mind has not changed Pau fan club.

Check Mate.


Chris Vernon