Disgruntled Golden State Warriors forward Stephen Jackson is about to make fresh start with a new team.
The Warriors completed a deal Monday that sends Jackson and guard Acie Law to the Bobcats in exchange for veteran swingmen Raja Bell and Vladimir Radmanovic.
The Cavs were only willing to go as far as to offer a package of Wally and Delonte West then it shouldn’t be too big of a surprise that Warriors took Charlotte’s deal. Raja Bell has an expiring contract and Radmanovic is a mobile big who can spread the floor (which, in theory, should work well with Don Nelson’s offense). The Cavs were basically only offering two expirings (they’d waive Delonte before next season).
I’m torn on this. If the Cavs were going to have to give up either Z or Hickson (without Z getting bought out) then I’m glad they didn’t pull the trigger. But getting Jackson for only Delonte (despite how much I like West) and Wally (someone not even on the team) would’ve been awesome.
Part of me wonders if Jackson won’t get traded again before the deadline. His main beef in Golden State was the lack of winning. Charlotte is a nice young team but they aren’t exactly a team you expect in the playoff hunt. Now maybe Jackson changes that, I dunno, but I wouldn’t be shocked if he makes another stink after a few months.
As for the Cavs, the emergence of J.J. Hickson will only make Danny Ferry’s job easier. If Hickson continues to play well, Ferry may not be forced to have to make any trades (especially with Leon Powe coming back). However, if the opportunity to trade for an all-star comes along, having a young big (21 years old) playing well should definitely help grease the wheels.
[Update] Brian Windhorst:
According to some league sources the Cavs indeed had an offer into the Warriors for Jackson. The two sides, I am told, talked about Zydrunas Ilgauskas, Delonte West and even a sign-and-trade for Wally Szczerbiak among other things.
With a 7-3 record and on a four-game winning streak with things still developing this early in the season, the Cavs were unwilling to improve their offer over the weekend. How close the Warriors were to accepting it is known only to their top decision makers.
But the Cavs were not willing to give up any of their size for Jackson and that was a road block. The only way they were willing to give up Ilgauskas is if there was an agreement to buy him out and have him return in 30 days, which is permitted under current rules. In addition, right now J.J. Hickson is virtually untouchable unless it is for a home run deal.
It is not a great deal for Golden State but they are going to save a lot of money and they get two players that they can play in their rotation and they get a starter-quality big man. Frankly, that is more than the Cavs apparently were willing to offer. It makes sense Golden State made this deal.
I like the Cavs thinking here. They won’t trade Z unless getting some kind of big in return (or a buyout) and J.J. Hickson will only be traded in a “home run deal”. Good. J.J. is young and has a ton of upside, they rightfully shouldn’t be parting with him for the likes of S-Jax.