By Brian Kalchik @BrianKalchik on June 30, 2014
As expected, there were plenty of transactions throughout the league in last week's NBA Draft. Here’s a quick recap of every deal, including those completed prior to the draft that impacted the order and the selections that followed.
Keeping LeBron James is the biggest priority this offseason, and they started off well by trading for the player that LeBron was raving about in Shabazz Napier. For the Hornets, Hairston gives the team a starting-caliber two-guard who can both shoot and defend on the perimeter. Both teams won so far in this deal. Christon would be traded later on.
Both teams won this deal as Chicago got a viable shooter for their dormant offense and the Nuggets got two of the best value picks in the draft in Jusuf Nurkic and Gary Harris. Randolph's contract could be bought out, giving the Bulls more flexibility in their quest to acquire an elite free agent.
Both teams benefited from this trade as the Magic were able to get one of the top point guards in the draft while the 76ers are continuing their rebuilding efforts. Payton will step in and compete with Jameer Nelson for the Magic while Saric will spend a few seasons in Europe before coming over. The first-rounder in 2017 is good ammunition for future moves.
The Lakers were able to get their big guy in Julius Randle in the first and gave away just cash for Clarkson, who was rumored to be a late first-round pick. Given the questions surrounding the Lakers, Clarkson could be a sleeper candidate to start right away.
After using all three of their first-round picks, the Jazz decided not to keep their second-round selection and instead traded it to Memphis. For the Grizzlies, the acquisition of Jarnell Stokes gives the team another high-energy guy who is a tremendous rebounder.
Both Pierre Jackson and Russ Smith are undersized for their position and are score-first point guards, but both are serious offensive threats who are capable of providing firepower off the bench. The summer league will determine whether each sticks with their respective teams.
After dealing away their picks last year in the Kevin Garnett-Paul Pierce trade, the Nets came back into the draft and acquired Brown, an athletic combo guard who could push Deron Williams. This wasn't the last time the Nets traded cash for a player.
Xavier Thames, like Brown, provides the Nets with another backcourt option to evaluate this summer. Looking at Toronto's roster, they didn't need much so the cash was more valuable to them than a player like Thames.
With the Cavaliers selecting Andrew Wiggins at No. 1, Alonzo Gee was expendable. Cleveland gets a solid yet unspectacular big man in Brendan Haywood and a stretch-4 in Dwight Powell. In Gee, Charlotte gets a starting-caliber wing player who can help bring some scoring off the bench.
It just wouldn’t be a true Spurs draft if they didn’t grab an international player. Nemanja Dangubic will likely be monitored by them for a year or two overseas before seriously being considered as a candidate to join the team. With the 76ers in rebuilding mode, Jordan McRae could hang around with them as a viable scorer coming off the bench. Cory Jefferson was traded later on.
As Mr. Irrelevant, Jefferson went from one of the NBA's best teams to one of its worst and now to a team that is stuck in the middle. He is a good athlete, but he still needs some development in order to make a difference. Down the road Jefferson could replace Kevin Garnett. The 76ers couldn't keep each of their rookies, so one had to go.
The Bucks had plenty of good wing players already on the roster, so keeping Patterson wouldn't have made much sense. For Atlanta, they needed a wing player in the draft but waited until Patterson to get one. Patterson is not one of the best athletes in the draft, but his intelligence and basketball IQ can help the Hawks right away.
Just like Jefferson, former Xavier Musketeer Semoj Christon went from elite teams in Miami and Oklahoma City to Charlotte, a perennial basement dweller until this past season. Oklahoma City's backcourt was already loaded with Reggie Jackson and Russell Westbrook, so Christon likely wouldn't have made a difference. Charlotte gets an intriguing prospect who potentially could backup Kemba Walker.
The Pacers wanted nothing to do with this draft as they sent their only pick in Louis Labeyrie to the Knicks for cash. The cash will be used to help keep the core of this team together while the Knicks get a long-term prospect they can evaluate down the road.
With the Magic in the middle of their rebuilding plan, Arron Afflalo was one of the few veterans on the roster and was shipped to Denver. The Nuggets brought back Afflalo to solidify the two position, which Fournier couldn't do last year as a Nugget. Orlando also got Roy Devyn Marble, who could compete to replace the now departed Doron Lamb on the active roster.
Since the Rockets signed Dwight Howard last season, they tried to get rid of Omer Asik and finally did so this offseason. New Orleans gets a starting-caliber center who can play opposite Anthony Davis, and the Rockets get a first-round pick next year, which could be used in a sign-and-trade for a player like LeBron James or Carmelo Anthony.
Dallas got just what they needed as the team is in win-now mode. Tyson Chandler will once again bring a defensive presence to Dallas while Felton, if in shape, could be a good point guard. New York got four players who fit the triangle offense in Jose Calderon, Wayne Ellington, Shane Larkin and Samuel Dalembert, a first-round caliber talent in Cleanthony Early and an intriguing prospect in Thanasis Antetokounmpo.
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