Lost in the Lebronapalooza last night was a trade the Warriors made to acquire David Lee. It hasn’t gone through yet, but is supposed to later today. I’ll be the first to admit I haven’t really watched Lee play a whole lot. He was on the Knicks after all, and the Warriors have been more relevant in recent years than them somehow. We gave up Anthony Randolph, Kelenna Azabuike, and Ronny Turiaf to get him. I think the Knicks got one hell of a deal on this sign and trade. It might be the first good deal they’ve made in awhile. I have very mixed emotions on the move since the Warriors always trade away their young potential guys, so we have to watch them flourish with their new team. I was VERY sad to see that the prospective new owners weren’t involved at all in this decision. It’s a tough one to swallow since Randolph is only 21, and although he’s turnover prone, gets overly emotional, and disappears at times, he is a fan favorite with limitless potential that anyone who watches him play can see. Plus he was only making $2M, Klenna was making about $3M, and Turiaf was only making about $4M. All are good players to give up that were very cheap to keep, and now we are left with a gaping hole at the 3, since Maggette already was shipped away now we gave up Buike. Are we going to roll with Reggie Williams at the 3? Maybe, and I was pretty high on him last year, but not really in the starting lineup. I was thinking he’d be a solid back up to Buike. It’s probably a fitting way to end the Cohan era, one more guy we lose that will possibly be a mega star in the league given away for a big contract that isn’t coming off the books for awhile that may or may not work out. Most of the players on the Warriors seemed shocked by the trade, but gave us the ol’ quote that “this is a business”. I hope this move wasn’t to try and raise the value of the team, because I don’t see it making the franchise worth more. Since last year was a lost season due to the record number of injuries they suffered, and since they are one of the youngest teams in the league it might have been made hastily. I personally wanted to see this team together for all of next year, and wanted to figure out what this squad had playing with a remotely healthy group for a whole year before we blew them up. We don’t even know what our big guys can and can’t do since they never really played together for an extended period of time, and weren’t healthy for 90% of the season last year. Our PF and C for the last two months were from the D-Leagues, so who even knows if they are good or not the way they were constructed.
One thing I know for sure is this move wouldn’t have been made if Mullin was still our GM. He loved Randolph, and wouldn’t have given up on him just as he reaches drinking age, even for a proven player of David Lee’s stature. I do like Lee’s steady improvement over the years, but since he was in D’Antoni’s system his stats were surely inflated a little. You can’t teach hustle though, and he has that with a work ethic twenty times better than Randolph’s. He will fit in nicely with Curry since he is a screen and roll guy, something Randolph is not. I just don’t see acquiring the 6’9” PF as a great move for them at the moment, but high basketball IQ guys are good to have, and pairing him with Curry is going to make us immediately better. My real question now becomes is that the same way they are going to play when Nellie is shown the door by the new owner? Does making a new player the highest paid guy on the team make them more attractive to the potential buyers? I’d say no to both, because I’m sure the new ownership will want to have flexibility with the players that they just traded away. Especially since all three are only under contract for two more years, and you could cut your losses then if they aren’t what you thought they’d be. It’s not like we are competing for a title this year. I’ll give Larry Riley a little credit for making a move that isn’t completely going backwards for once, and Lee is an upgrade this year, but all of the moves we’ve made for the past three years management told us we were looking toward the future. It seems odd that all of a sudden they made a move that is meant for now. Maybe Riley is trying to audition for a new job that he will surely lose when the new owner comes in. If we have a complete change in philosophy with the next owner, this might be a terrible idea. That being said, Lee will immediately improve our rebounding, and has shown he can run up and down the court in a frantic style. One thing I LOVE about the deal is Lee is entering his prime. Lee cost $20-$40M less than guys like Boozer, Amare, and Bosh, and we will get Lee for a full extra year than the three guys mentioned will be on their respective teams.
All in all, it’s not a terrible move. I think losing Buike was pretty rough, and my gut tells me anything that Riley and Cohan signed off on is a bad idea. Lee will fit in well, and I hope he’s a big piece we were missing. I’m not completely sold he is, but either way it was good that the trade didn’t involve Curry, which is the only guy I would be pissed about giving away. I hope there aren’t any more surprises before we have our new owner! Good thing we are pretty much as high as we can go with the salary cap to restrict Riley from doing too many stupid things before he loses his job to never be a GM again…
July 9th, 2010 at 2:26 pm
You’re going to love Lee. He’s the most underrated big man in the NBA.
July 9th, 2010 at 2:42 pm
Lee is one those understated guys whose game isn’t appreciated but on any given night he can give a team a ” double double” and you wouldn’t have been aware of it unless you looked at the final box score .
Alan ……….. 🙂
July 9th, 2010 at 2:46 pm
I hope so. I was kind of wondering if he was under rated because he’s white!?!? Could reverse racism actually happen!?!
July 9th, 2010 at 3:46 pm
[…] Discounts ← Dubs Always Keeping it Interesting… […]
July 10th, 2010 at 10:53 am
If you compare Lee’s last season numbers to Amare Stoudemire, they’re remarkably similar with Lee’s perhaps even a little better.
Good pick up by the Warriors.