NBA Trade Deadline Reviews

Another trade deadline has come and gone and the aftermath is mind boggling. While big names who were thought to be dealt such as Deandre Jordan and Tyreke Evans stayed put, there were several big deals completed and left much of the NBA in shock. Read below to catch up on today’s biggest deals. 

Cavaliers receive: G Jordan Clarkson (3 YR/37 MIL), F Larry Nance Jr. (2YR/3.5 MIL) 

Lakers receive: G Isaiah Thomas (1 YR/6 MIL), F Channing Frye (1 YR/7 MIL), 2018 CLE 1st Round Pick

Cavaliers: With this deal, Cleveland is able to move Isaiah Thomas who has struggled drastically with his new team through 14 games. His offense has fallen off, his 5"9' frame is a plague on the defensive side of the ball, and he hasn't seemed to click in the locker room with players and the front office. When the Cav's traded for Thomas this offseason in the Kyrie Irving deal, there was skepticism surrounding his long term future with the Cavs due to his desire for a max contract and the Cav's already being well over the luxury tax. While there weren't strong rumors leading up to this trade, the move of Isaiah Thomas doesn't come as a surprise. In return, Cleveland gets a 6"6' slashing guard in Jordan Clarkson and a highlight reel machine in Larry Nance Jr. These two young players give Cleveland the athleticism and youth that they have been lacking this season. While neither are outstanding individual defenders, they're length and athleticism and can be impactful in a team defense that's built to win. However, the 3 year and $37 million contract of Clarkson is something that could hold the Cavs back in future trades and signings. Final grade: B-

Lakers: Getting an All-Star and reigning MVP contender in Isaiah Thomas on a one year rental is something that any team would love to have. While Isaiah has struggled this season, the chance to play on a younger, developing team that can allow him to have more control of the ball could work out well for him. The Lakers have stated Lonzo Ball will continue to be the starting point guard when he returns from injury, they expect Isaiah and Lonzo to start together. Working out those two and how to distribute the ball could be difficult, but in a season in which the Lakers aren't contending, there's low risk in this deal. They're able to get an All-Star, veteran leader (Frye), and a late first round for two players they had been looking to deal away. Most importantly, this trade gives the Lakers up to $70 million in cap space this upcoming free agency. The Lakers will look to target LeBron James and Paul George first and foremost before attempting to resign Isaiah Thomas or F Julius Randle. The ability to get ride of the Clarkson contract, pick up a pick, and test out Isaiah for low cost is a huge win for the Lakers. Final grade: A+

Cavaliers receive: G George Hill (3 YR/57 MIL), G Rodney Hood (1 YR/2 MIL)

Jazz receive: G Derrick Rose (1 YR/2 MIL), F Jae Crowder (3 YR/22 MIL) 

Kings receive: F Joe Johnson (1 YR/ 10 MIL), G Iman Shumpert (2 YR/22 MIL) 

Cavaliers: They got who they wanted. Going into the deadline it was no secret that the Cav's wanted George Hill on their roster. Being able to get Rodney out of the deal as well is a sweet bonus. Both of these players can be great bench players or average starters. This will give the Cavaliers more options in their back court which they desperately need. These two pairing with Clarkson and J.R. Smith give Cleveland a boost on the offense and defense end. Hill has entered his 30's, but Hood is still on his rookie deal and will be looking to play his best basketball in an effort to increase his value going into Restricted Free Agency this offseason. Cleveland loses Rose, Crowder, and Shumpert in the process. Crowder may be their best defender behind LeBron, but Hill and Hood are decent defenders which is more than we can say about Rose and Shumpert this season. Once again, the main downside to this trade is the financial side of things. Crowder's very favorable 3 year and $22 million contract is gone and in exchange take on Hill's lopsided 3 year and $57 million deal. Questionable decision in terms of book keeping, but if this move keeps LeBron happy it's worth it. Final grade: B

Jazz: Rodney Hood has been on the block for a few weeks now and they finally decided to pull the trigger. They get great value in Jae Crowder who fits perfectly with their defense first system. They decided to release Derrick Rose after the trade, which basically turns this into a Jae Crowder for Rodney Hood and Joe Johnson deal. They seem to get the short end of the straw on this deal, as Hood could have easily been a solid 2-guard on a winning team, but with the emergence of rookie Donavon Mitchell they choose to move on from Hood. This trades improves the Jazz already elite defense as they look to push for a bottom seed in the playoffs. Final grade: C

Kings: The Kings are the only team in this deal that are in a full rebuild mode, which explains the contracts they've received. Joe Johnson has been waived, and Shumpert will most likely be a role player off of their bench (Kings traded bench G Malichi Richardson later in the day, more on that later). Getting off of the George Hill contract is nice, but the better upside is it gives more playing time to rookie De'Aaron Fox who is still finding his way in the NBA. Fox has the ability to foster John Wall like talent a few years from now if the Kings are able to properly develop him, and in-game experience is huge for that progress. While this move doesn't change the Kings' win-loss column all that much, it will help the future of the franchise continue to grow. Final grade: C+

Cavaliers receive: MIA 2020 2nd Round Pick

Heat receive: G Dwyane Wade (1 YR/2 MIL) 

Cavaliers: Coach Tyron Lue made the decision to give more minutes to G Cedi Osman and less to Dwyane Wade. The front office gave Wade the option of accepting this role or being moved to Miami. Wade chose to return home in this deal that gives the Cavs space for their new guard to flourish and be utilized. In return the Cavs get a future second round pick that we'll most likely see be used as a trade piece at some point down the road (if Cleveland is still competitive by 2020). Final grade: C

Heat: Miami gets their heart and soul back. Dwyane Wade is the franchise leader in just about everything and will most likely spend the rest of his career in a Heat uniform extending those records. With Waiters out for the rest of the season, the addition of Wade will give them more depth at the SG position. Wade isn't what he used to be, but he can still help this team make a push for the playoffs in a tightly contested Eastern Conference. Final grade: B

Hawks receive: F Okaro White (1 YR/1 MIL) 

Heat receive: F Luke Babbit (1 YR/2 MIL)

Hawks: I'll be honest, I had to google "Okaro White" to figure out who this man was. The Hawks will be getting a 6"8' PF who can do a little bit of everything. He's had to fight his way up from the D-League before earning multiple 10-day contracts with the heat before signing a two-year deal last season with the Heat. He can hit three's on a 30%+ clip and can run the floor. Final grade: C

Heat: Luke Babbit adds shooting and veteran experience to a team surging for the playoffs after getting snubbed last year. Those are two traits that every playoff team is looking for. Babbit isn't going to light it up night in and night out, but can stretch the floor coming off the bench. Final grade: C

Knicks receive: G Emmanuel Mudiay (2 YR/7 MIL)

Mavericks receive: F Doug McDermott (1 YR/3 MIL), DEN 2018 2nd Round Pick

Nuggets receive: G Devin Harris (1 YR/4 MIL), NYK Future 2nd Round Pick

Knicks: They get another young piece along side Tim Hardaway Jr. and Frank Ntilikina. Mudiay, a former lottery pick, hasn't shaped out the way expected, but a new change of scenery could be what he needs. The Knicks are in full tank mode now with Porzingis out for the season. This will allow for the young, unproven players to get plenty of minutes to show what their worth. McDermott's absence will slightly lower the Knicks threat from deep, but that's a small price to pay to give a talent like Mudiay a chance. Mudiay has an opportunity to prove himself once again while the Knicks head towards the lottery. Final grade: B 

Mavericks: The addition of three-point shooting from McDermott and a pick in the upcoming draft is a solid return on veteran Devin Harris. Harris is in his 13th season in the NBA and was a member of the Mavericks' 2006 Western Conference Championship team that went on to lose to the Heat in the finals. McDermott will join forces with former high school teammate Harrison Barnes in Dallas. Mav's currently have the best odds at the first pick in the draft. Adding a young, streaky shooter in McDermott and a 2nd round pick will help them improve their results in this upcoming draft. The loss of Harris is unfortunate for a young team that needs leadership, but I'm sure Dirk is more than willing to pick up the slack. Final grade: B- 

Nuggets: While the Mudiay experiment didn't work, that's no need to frown. Drafting players like Gary Harris, Nikola Jokic, and Jamaal Murray while signing former All-Star Paul Millsap is the sign of a great front office that more times than not comes through. The addition of Devin Harris will be most impactful in the locker room as this Nuggets team looks to snag a playoff spot in the bottom of the conference. While this team isn't at it's full potential, they're still looking to win now and don't have the time to wait for Mudiay to possibly flourish. Final grade: B

Magic receive: PHX 2018 2nd Round Pick 

Suns receive: G Elfrid Payton (1 YR/ 3 MIL) 

Magic: This may have been the biggest flop of the trade deadline. The Magic give up a PG in Payton who has shown flashes of capability throughout his young career (most triple-doubles in Magic history) in exchange for just a second round pick. Orlando’s front office continues to show a lack of ability to put together a team worthy of a playoff spot. Final grade: D

Suns: Phoenix has been struggling at the PG spot since trading away Eric Bledsoe earlier in the season. The addition of Payton gives the Suns stability at PG for at least the rest of this season (Payton enters RFA next season). This is a steal for the Suns as they give Payton a shot to make his case as a starting point guard in the NBA. Final grade: B+

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