Some people may look at the Toronto Raptors and think that they have a nice, young nucleus in Kyle Lowry, DeMar DeRozan and Rudy Gay that will win a championship in the future, but people forget that the NBA is a business as well as entertainment. The Memphis Grizzlies still have one of the best front-courts in the NBA in Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol, plus a dynamic point guard in Mike Conley, Jr.
On the surface, it may appear that Toronto had the better end of this blockbuster deal, but this is not true.
There is an old saying that goes,“one man’s loss is another man’s gain.” Toronto gained a legitimate star in Rudy Gay. They have pieces in place that could get them back into the playoffs in a year and possibly this season, with a nice run of victories. The question that Toronto has to ask itself pertains to long-term roster changes. Is Rudy Gay good enough to be the face of their franchise? Is Andrea Bargnani expendable now?
Memphis cashed in on an investment that they had.
In addition, Memphis received Tayshaun Prince, Austin Daye and Ed Davis. None of these players are ball hogs. This allows Randolph and Gasol to continue being the first two scoring options.
The business side of this trade pertains to money. Memphis freed up a lot of money getting rid of Gay. In addition, Memphis will free up a great deal of money when Daye and Prince come off their books in a year. Memphis can actually make a run at a nice shooting guard or small forward. Caron Butler is the first name that comes to mind.
With the logjam at the shooting guard and small forward positions on the Los Angeles Clippers’ roster, teams will be inquiring about some of their players. Butler deserves more touches, but he will not get them as long as he plays for the Los Angeles Clippers.
I think that both teams improved with this deal; however, Memphis received more. I did not forget to mention the Detroit Pistons, who were also a part of this trade. Detroit was a “filler” or “wing man,” so the trade could happen. Their team did not become better or worse with this trade.