Lots and lots going on today in preparation for the Bulls game tonight. More to come on that one, but in the meantime, Wizardland is buzzing with news from all over the place.
Remember the three-team deal from yesterday? Well, considering I first heard about the deal from the Basketball Jones podcast, I decided to respond to them in an e-mail they read on air today. Here's what I said.
The expiring contract logic also makes no sense to me, because why do the Wizards need to sacrifice this season just to clear 8 million in cap space? They have their Big 3, so they have no reason to go after a major free agent, and with all three guys under contract until the end of next season (when Jamison's 16 million comes off the books), it's not like they're trying to save money to re-sign their own players.
Tas, who's probably one of the most knowledgable NBA minds I've ever heard, responded to the expiring contract claim that the Wizards have no need to keep both Brendan Haywood and Etan Thomas for three more years when they need to upgrade the team around the Big 3. Understandable, but I still don't see the Wizards upgrading the center position with the 8 million dollars they save. A center by committee approach can work well -- remember the Bulls trio of Luc Longley, Will Perdue, and Bill Wennington back in the day? -- and considering the market for big men these days, the Wizards are going to have to pay a premium if they want even a comporable center to Haywood, which they will desperately need because of Thomas' poor durability. Considering Haywood's production is close to that level, and he's making only 5-6 million a year, it seems silly to trade him. The Wizards would be better off letting Jarvis Hayes go, re-signing DeShawn Stevenson with his money, drafting a young point guard, and using the mid-level exception on a defensive wing to replace Hayes. Combined with a healthy return for Darius Songaila and continued improvements for Andray Blatche, and the Wizards have a deep enough team to be a championship contender next season. Haywood's too important to just trade for cap relief.
For more on the trade, check out Brian McCormick's latest blog entry.
Haywood and Hayes for Brad Miller...interesting, to say the least. I wonder what the guys at Sactown Royalty would say to that?
On an unrelated note, a couple Wizards made radio appearances today on Sports Talk 980. Antonio Daniels talked on the Brian Mitchell Show at noon, and Gilbert Arenas is talking on the John Thompson Show soon. If anyone heard either of these appearances, let me know what you thought. I heard parts of the Daniels one, and he said some interesting things.
In terms of the team on the court, Eddie Jordan had this to say about the return of Etan Thomas.
The return of Thomas is definitely going to help the team, and I'm glad that Jordan is starting Haywood instead of Thomas. Thomas' game is better suited to coming off the bench, and considering the makeup of this team, his energy is a huge asset.
Tom Knott at the Times has an outdated column on Gilbert Arenas' long-distance shots, but this graph was interesting nonetheless.
He often is able to absorb the blow and complete the play. This is what Dwyane Wade does as well, only Wade lacks the perimeter shooting ability of Arenas.
Ahh...good ol' Tom Knott and his one line sentence fragments.
Actually I didn't get to see all the stuff at the party. I seen the ice sculpture, but most of the other stuff I didn't get to see it because it was so hectic in there. They said they took pictures of it before everybody got in there, so I want to see those.
Bulls preview is coming later, so stay tuned.
Remember to vote in the newest poll about this rumored three-way swap. Would you trade Brendan Haywood and Jarvis Hayes for Jamaal Magloire and his 8 million dollar expiring contract?