Jason Kidd’s a quality player who puts up sexy statistics, but his inability to make shots leaves him with more name than game at this point in his Hall-of-Fame career.
Apparently seeing a hobbled Shaq ride into town as a response to Pau Gasol’s LA arrival made Mark Cuban decide it’s time to blow everyone out of the water by acquiring a point guard who nearly averages a triple-double. Unfortunately, that guy is Jason Kidd, and the only thing blown is the Mavs’ future.
Here’s the trade machine breakdown of this dizzying deal.
Dallas will send New Jersey Desgana Diop, Jerry Stackhouse, Devean George, Maurice Ager, wads of cash, and the prize of the deal for either side, Devin Harris. As if that weren’t enough, the Nets will receive an additional two first-round draft picks in 2008 and 2010.
Heading to Big D along with Kidd will be Malik Allen, whose closest comparison at age 29 is Peja Drobnjak according to the esteemed John Hollinger, and in a separate trade, Antoine Wright, who’s also not very good at basketball, for a second-round pick.
All in all Dallas gets the trade’s biggest name, but gives up some depth and the best overall value, Harris. The departed Maverick is 24-years-old, putting up the best numbers of anyone in the trade, and heads to Bon Jovi’s native land to start the rebuilding of the soon-to-be Brooklyn Nets.
At the end of the day Dallas finds itself no better off than it was pre-trade, and perhaps worse off. Kidd will probably have a mini-resurgence due to some new motivation, and likely will play better than Harris would have over the remainder of this season and perhaps next. However, losing some front-court depth hurts, and the Mavs have officially pigeonholed themselves into a team with a two-year window–one that’s just barely open enough for el pequenito Jose Juan Barea to slide through.
Dallas has a solid roster, but it still lacks that killer late-game finisher it so needs, and now further lacks a true big man with the departure of Diop (although it’s not like he was a game-changer as some members of the media will assure you in the coming days). The team will certainly be a threat in the play-offs, but will be nowhere near the favorite, and has given up a huge part of its future in Harris and the two first-rounders. If Dallas can’t win either this year or next, this trade will have been a failure, and let’s just say I’m guessing the final report card comes back with a grade of 59 or lower.
Stackhouse is rumored to re-sign with the Mavericks after his agent engineers a quick buyout from Nets GM Rod Thorn, but he won’t be answering any of Dallas’s major question marks.
So, that leaves Dallas with the following roster:
Kidd, Eddie Jones, Josh Howard, Dirk Nowitzki, and Erik Dampier in the starting line-up.
Jason Terry, Jose Juan Barea, Brandon Bass, Juwan Howard, Malik Allen, Antoine Wright, and potentially Jerry Stackhouse off the bench.
This is a solid roster, one that should do very well, but most likely not a team advancing past the second round of the play-offs in the Western Conference.
Meanwhile, back east, Devin Harris replaces J-Kidd as Richard Jefferson and Vince Carter’s point man, and brings along a couple more able bodies with him. This trade shouldn’t change New Jersey’s status as a fringe play-off contender, but gives the team a much brighter future. If the Nets can somehow shed Vinsanity’s hefty deal for a shorter-term contract, the full-scale rebuilding plan they need would be well on its way. Even shopping Jefferson and/or Carter for a big man would give the team a shot at a quick turnaround, similar to that of the Celtics of this year or the Heat of next year, albeit likely without true title aspirations.
Overall this trade represents the second consecutive trade miscasting a former superstar as the savior of a stagnant Western contender, both of which will help balance the competition of both conferences over the next few years–something we could all stand to see.