The NBA trade deadline didn’t feature Dwight Howard leaving Orlando, but it did feature a slew of minor deals that could have playoff implications. A run-down:
* The Lakes sent Derek Fisher and a 2012 1st round pick (via Dallas in the Odom trade) to Houston for power forward Jordan Hill. Hill should be an invaluable backup for when a) Bynum gets hurt or b) Gasol wears down, like he did last year against Dallas.
* The Lakers acquired point guard Ramon Sessions and wing Christian Eyenga from Cleveland for Luke Walton, Jason Kapano, and LA’s first round pick in 2012. Sessions should instantly push Steve Blake for the starting PG spot.
* Inexplicable, the Nuggets have dealt away Nene – the guy they just spent a ton on in the offseason – in a three-team deal: Nene to Washington, JaVale McGee to Denver and Nick Young to the Clippers. Guess the Nuggets were so desperate to unload a contract, they were willing to take on McGee. I love the Young pickup for the Clippers, who will get wing scoring from him that they couldn’t get from Caron Butler.
* Portland has decided to go into rebuilding mode. In addition to trading Gerald Wallace to New Jersey, they traded center Marcus Camby to the Rockets for Jonny Flynn and Hasheem Thabeet. Those two guys were great in the Big East, but have done nothing in the NBA. Enjoy the rebuilding, LaMarcus Aldridge. Oh, and he’ll have to do it without his coach, Nate McMillian, who was fired.
* Houston, when it gets Kyle Lowry back, could give somebody fits in the first round. A Camby/Scola/Parsons/Martin/Lowery lineup isn’t bad, especially with Dalembert/Patterson/Budinger/Lee/Dragic as a second unit. A poor man’s Denver Nuggets of 2011?
* The Spurs and Warriors swapped past-their-prime swings – Richard Jefferson went from a title contender to a a lottery team; Stephen Jackson is on his third team in two weeks.
[Can I just attribute all of these scoops to Woj from Yahoo? Dude broke damn near every story today.]