Trade-deadline winners and losers (cont.)
What they got: Nothing
What they gave up: Nothing
Skinny: Unless you are a Cavs financial officer or a fan of luxury-tax relief, this is a disappointment. Cleveland had a monster chip to play in Wally Szczerbiak's $13.8 million expiring contract but sat on it. The Clippers never really made Marcus Camby available and Cleveland couldn't work out a deal for Richard Jefferson or Shaquille O'Neal. The Cavs may still emerge as NBA champions, but they probably blew an enormous opportunity to bolster their chances.
What they got: Nothing
Skinny: This one comes with an asterisk. The Celtics failed to upgrade their bench and settled for creating two open roster spots by dumping the seldom-used O'Bryant and never-used Cassell. But who will fill those spots (besides rookie J.R. Giddens, who was recalled from the D-League on Thursday)? Here's where the asterisk comes into play. The Kings released forward-center Mikki Moore late Thursday. Though not a great defender, Moore is a long, perimeter-shooting big man who could bolster the Celtics' frontcourt. Expect Cleveland, Denver and perhaps the Lakers to join the bidding for Moore. If Boston can get Moore (or forward Joe Smith if he secures a buyout from Oklahoma City), its deadline scorecard gets a whole lot better.
Oklahoma City Thunder
What they gave up: F Chris Wilcox, 2009 first-round pick
Skinny: Unless Chandler's toe falls off sometime in the next two years, the Thunder overreacted to an injury that the Hornets don't seem to be that concerned about. Chandler would have backstopped a porous defense and formed a solid nucleus with Kevin Durant, Jeff Green and Russell Westbrook, in addition to the multiple first-round picks OKC has this June. Instead, the Thunder picked up some money in the Rose-Wilcox swap and a promising swingman in Sefolosha, who cost them one of their low first-round picks. Not the worst result, but one that could have gone as significantly better.
Houston Rockets: After beginning the season with championship aspirations, dealing Alston could be the first step in a rebuilding process. It remains to be seen whether Aaron Brooks or new addition Kyle Lowry can handle Alston's starting job.