If you’ve got to trade someone, you traded the right guy….I guess
I can’t say I fully agree with the recent trade between the Suns and the Bobcats. As a Bobcats fan, I feel like we kind of got screwed with one caveat: We really weren’t lighting the world on fire with J-Rich and Dudley. The 3 players received in return, Diaw, Bell and Singletary add up to more than Jason Richardson and Jared Dudley and a 2nd round pick in 2010. It just sucks when everyone who knows anything about the NBA nationally says “Suns stole Richardson from hapless Bobcats.” Hollinger over at the worldwide leader broke it down pretty well. Biggest point I got from it was that the money worked without Dudley. Why throw him in? It’s tough to say how this went down, we get very little information and quotes out of the Charlotte front office. Bobcatsplanet member/trade and contract guru Tamburello compiled a nice list of comments from involved parties. You know, we can analyze this trade until we’re blue in the face but we can’t change it. “Would you do it again?” Who cares? We can’t, wouldn’t be proposed again, and couldn’t send players back to either team for 30 days right?
If there are two things I can completely confirm is that Jason Richardson is a great guy, great player and if I had to pick to trade away him or another one of the “core” of this team, I’d pick him over and again. All the rumors out there involved Gerald Wallace, Raymond Felton and hopefully one of the trio of disaster: Carroll, Mohamed or May. Jason Richardson and Jared Dudley were never mentioned as far as I can recall. But you know what? I’m pretty glad it wasn’t Gerald Wallace or Raymond Felton. Jason Richardson is sort of a dime-a-dozen-type player. Not really dime-a-dozen but maybe nickel for half a dozen? I don’t know. He’s awesome but you can replace his output with either a few others stepping up or another player just stepping in. I’m not belittling the guy because he’s gone; Phoenix has a legit 2nd level 2 guard. He’s not quite a dominating force, he’s no slouch either. He’s the Glen Rice of this generation. Great talents, scores lots of points, will have a long career but will only be an All-Star once or twice, if he’s lucky, in his career.
The two guys I mentioned that I’m glad were not traded, Wallace and Felton are in fact, special. In my estimation Wallace fills up a stat line like few in the league do, not just because he’s on a “bad” team as I’ve seen my diabolical nemesis say but because he’s a hustle guy whose athleticism and determination drive him to. Last year there were 3 guys in the league who averaged as many points steals assists and rebounds and that was Lebron James, Dwight Howard and Gerald Wallace. He’s a special Small Forward and he means a lot to this team, the fans and the community as evidenced by the recent outpouring of sympathy and well wishes from this board in particular.
Raymond Felton’s role is a bit more nebulous. 3 coaches in his 4th year in the league. He’s a SG, PG. He’s worse than Jeff McInnis, he’s better than Chris Paul. Ok, he’s not better than Chris Paul but he is a very serviceable point guard and shooting guard. Right now he is 16th in the league in assists per game and that’s with his ever shifting role.
While I felt like we should not trade any of the “core” (Wallace, Okafor, Felton, Richardson) of those 4, Richardson is the most expendable. If the parts we got in return are worth his loss….that remains to be seen….and I haven’t even mentioned Jared Dudley!