Top 5 Players Most Deserving of A Trade
We’re less than two weeks away from the trade deadline, and despite the fact many league sources continue to insist things have been quieter than usual, there are still a number of players out there that not only could be traded, but probably should be traded.
This is a list of the players who most deserve a change of scenery before this month’s trade deadline. They aren’t necessarily the guys who are most likely to be traded, just the best players in the worst situations more than ready for a new team. Here’s the top five players most deserving of a trade:
#5 – O.J. Mayo, Memphis Grizzlies – A lot is being made lately about how seamlessly the Grizzlies will work Mayo back into their lineup when he returns from his ten-game suspension, but simply trading the young man may be the better way to go about handling the situation. Everything has gone wrong for Mayo in Memphis this season, and a change of scenery could do him a lot of good. There’s no lack of interest for the young guard, either.
#4 – Rashard Lewis, Washington Wizards – Despite the fact he was struggling in Orlando and undeniably overpaid, Lewis liked being a member of the Magic and couldn’t have had the Wizards high on his list of teams he’d like to play for. While it’s been mentioned occasionally Lewis could be re-traded somewhere else before the deadline, those rumblings have calmed down a bit more recently, despite the fact Lewis could be a lot more helpful on a team playing for something. Washington is rebuilding, and they really don’t have much need for a player with that many years and that much money left on his deal. The problem, of course, is finding a taker for that monster contract. In terms of talent, however, plenty of competitive teams would love to have him, and he certainly wouldn’t mind a change of scenery, either.
#3 – Antawn Jamison, Cleveland Cavaliers – Despite the fact his salary ($15 million next season) is a little prohibitive for a trade to actually happen, Jamison is too good to be rotting on a Cavs team that’s going absolutely nowhere fast. He’s a great locker room guy with plenty he could still offer to a contender as a pricy second or third fiddle.
#2 – Steve Nash, Phoenix Suns – Any player who faces Nash comes out of the matchup commenting on how the man is ageless, and to be performing as well as he is in his late 30s is more than a little commendable. Phoenix has been pretty stubborn so far in keeping Nash even though they’re not even remotely close to winning a championship, but it’s time for that franchise to rebuild. If that’s what they decide to do—and they should—a happy side effect would be Nash potentially ending up on a team with a shot at a ring. Isn’t a crime that we’ve never gotten to see Nash play in an NBA Finals?
#1 – Richard Hamilton, Detroit Pistons – It’s simply not fair what’s happening to Hamilton in Detroit. Even before Pistons head coach John Kuester decided it was enough to play Rip about once every three or four weeks, Hamilton was averaging only about 25 minutes a game, and that’s nowhere near enough for a guy with his ability. For that matter, the fact Ben Gordon is only getting about that many minutes per game is similarly tragic. It’s time to make this move, for the team’s sake, and especially for Hamilton’s.
Tayshaun Prince, Detroit Pistons – While Prince isn’t going through anywhere near the frustration that his teammate Richard Hamilton is, he’s still somebody that would be a lot better served on a team with playoff aspirations. He’s in the final year of his contract with the Pistons, who already have Austin Daye in place to replace him should he not re-sign, and a good postseason run (which has sort of been his forte over the course of his career) could do a lot for invigorating his value.
Jamal Crawford, Atlanta Hawks – Crawford’s contract expires at the end of the season, which means he’s spent all year trying to play himself into the extension he feels he deserves from the Hawks. By no means is he in a horrible situation—quite the contrary, actually—but there could be a team out there willing to extend him for a starter’s money. With all the money Atlanta has invested at Crawford’s position of shooting guard (Joe Johnson), it’s hard to see them paying Crawford what he wants. For that reason, and that reason alone, he could use a change of scenery.
Carmelo Anthony, Denver Nuggets – At this point we’d all love to see Carmelo either sign the extension or get traded. By no means is he anywhere near as needy for a new team as other guys mentioned here, but for everybody’s sake it would be a relief to just have this never-ending story coming to an end.
While the argument could be made for a lot of players to appear somewhere on this list, these are the guys who are most ready to get themselves a change of address. Who else deserves a new team? Who of the guys above could actually be moved by February 24th? Hit up the comments below to add your two cents!