The Rich Get Richer
Pro Basketball Trading Deadline Winners and Losers:

The Pro Basketball trade deadline has come and gone and the futures impact is already being felt. Teams that were going off at double-digit odds just a couple of months ago are now going off at less than +600 in one futures book. Teams that were going off at big odds in the futures just a few months ago are now going off, or should be going off, at even bigger odds now.

The reason why underdogs are going off at higher odds than they were just about a couple of weeks ago is because the trades that occurred in the NBA last week have led to the rich getting richer and the poor, well, getting richer…down the road. The mighty have set themselves up for the here and now while the non-mighty are planning for next season. As everybody knows, when it comes to major sports leagues, the only thing that really exists is the here and now.

That fact will definitely play out in the sportsbooks as oddsmakers digest all of the moves that occurred at the NBA Trade Deadline.

 

NBA Trade Deadline: Winners and Losers

Biggest Winner: Los Angeles Lakers

Talk about the rich getting even richer, right? The Lakers pulled off a miracle by trading for C Jordan Hill, PG Ramon Sessions, SG Christian Eyenga, and the right to switch 2013 first-round draft picks with the Miami Heat. Sweet? Absolutely. But, the biggest miracle that GM Mitch Kupchak pulled off last week was keeping Pau Gasol. Gasol is a huge part of the Lakers’ offense and being able to keep him on the frontline with Andrew Bynum is a massive plus.

The Lakers keep Gasol, get the point-guard they coveted in Sessions, found a back-up for Andrew Bynum in Hill, and scored a young shooting guard with a ton of potential in Eyenga. What did it take for Kupchak to pull all of it off? They had to part with SF Luke Walton, past his prime PG Derek Fisher, and their two first round draft picks in 2012. A lot of my peers are questioning the wisdom of parting with the draft picks.

Guess what? There is no way that those two first round draft picks would produce players like Sessions and Hill. The Lakers have taken a huge step towards becoming the Kings of the NBA again. I mean, there’s still a dude named Kobe Bryant who plays for them. Sessions has dished 11 assists and scored 17 points in his first two games with the Lake Show. Wait until he gets comfortable.

The Lakers suddenly became the favorites, in my mind, to win the whole thing.

NBA Championship Odds: +550
Odds Should Be: +250

Big Winner: Los Angeles Clippers

We’ve become a basketball town in La La Land with the Clippers continuing to pull off amazing trades. The Clipps have a shot to boat all over the Lakers in the Western Conference Playoffs because they gave up practically nothing for a great guard in Nick Young.

What did a team with Kenyon Martin backing up Blake Griffin and Chris Paul at the point have to do in order to get a 26 year old, 6’ 7” 210 lb shooting guard who averages over 16 points per game? Eight year veteran Brian Cook, who averages 2 points per game, and, maybe, a future draft pick. Young will score because CP3 will find a way to get him the ball. It’s going to be tough to double Griffin because he can pass it to Young or Paul for easy jumpers.

The Clippers, surprisingly, took another step towards…uh, dare I say it? I think I will. The Clippers could win an NBA title this season.

NBA Championship Odds: +1500
Odds Should Be: +800

Winner

Golden State Warriors: The Warriors got a legitimate center in Andrew Bogut, a very good veteran player in SF Richard Jefferson, and the San Antonio Spurs first-round pick. They also got rid of SG Monta Ellis, who, in my opinion, was keeping them from becoming a real NBA team, SG Stephen Jackson, who is an Ellis wannabe, useless C Kwame Brown, and C Ekpe Udoh. Udoh has upside, but Bogut is good right now.

NBA Championship Odds: +15000
Odds Should Be: +12000

Neither Winners Nor Losers

Minnesota Timberwolves: Glass full? They didn’t lose Michael Beasley. Glass empty? They didn’t move Beasley for a point-guard to replace the injured Ricky Rubio.

NBA Championship Odds: +20000

San Antonio Spurs: I’m not a fan of SG Stephen Jackson and the Spurs did have to give up Jefferson and a first-round pick to get him, but they won a championship with Jackson on the bench. Pop will motivate SJ.

NBA Championship Odds: +1000

Cleveland Cavaliers: They did get a first-round pick for trading Sessions to the Lakers and Walton will work hard for his new team. Plus, Sessions had no place on Cleveland’s squad because starting point-guard Kyrie Irving is the bomb.

NBA Championship Odds: +15500

Indiana Pacers: They parted with a 2012 second-round pick for Leandro Barbosa. Barbosa still has the ability to be instant offense off the bench meaning that the Pacers made a good deal.

NBA Championship Odds: +5500

Boston Celtics: They didn’t move Rondo. What’s wrong with that? Nothing really. Of course, by not moving Rondo, they didn’t plan for the future, but who cares?

NBA Championship Odds: +1000

New Jersey Nets: SF Gerald Wallace, who they got from the Denver Nuggets, is a good player, and all they gave up was C Mehmet Okur, SF Shawne Williams, and a future first round pick. Of course, they’ve still got to deal with Deron Williams possibly leaving them this off-season. So, there’s that, right?

NBA Championship Odds: +8000

Washington Wizards: They got C Nene Hilario from Denver for C Javale “In My Own Mind I’m the Next Kareem” McGee, which was a great move. Then, unfortunately, they traded SG Nick Young to the Clippers. So, PG John Wall will be happy some days and not so happy other days.

NBA Championship Odds: +20000

Milwaukee Bucks: SG Monta Ellis will really help them in the scoring department but the success of this trade really rests on C Ekpe Udoh. If Udoh develops into one of the better centers in the league, then the Bucks are going to look like geniuses for unloading SG Stephen Jackson and essentially trading Bogut for Udoh.

NBA Championship Odds: +9250

 

NBA Trade Deadline Losers

All losers are big losers. That’s a fact, not a statement. Everybody on the list below is a loser.

Portland Trailblazers: They traded C Marcus Camby and SF Gerald Wallace for PG Jonny Flynn, Okur, and C Hasheem Thabeet. They also fired their coach, Nate McMillan.

NBA Championship Odds: +2000
Odds Should Be: +7500

 

Orlando Magic: The Magic have a huge headache in Dwight Howard. Sure, now they got a shot to keep Howard but all signs point to Dwight wanting out of Mickey’s House. What will it cost the Magic to keep Howard anyhow? And, after Howard, does Orlando have anything else? No, they don’t.

NBA Championship Odds: +2500
Odds Should Be: +4000

Denver Nuggets: Why would you trade a 13 point and 7 boards per game guy in Nene for C Javale McGee? I’m not sure. Ask the Nuggets. Sure, McGee has potential, but he’s also full of himself and is immature. Then again, the City of Denver is probably thinking football with Peyton Manning going to the Broncos, anyhow. So, they’ll let the Nuggets bonehead move slide.

NBA Championship Odds: +3000
Odds Should Be: +5500

 

Houston Rockets: They traded C Jordan Hill to the Lakers for PG Derek Fisher. Fisher has already bought out his contract and is no longer with the Rockets. They also lost PG Jonny Flynn, C Hasheem Thabeet and a future second-round pick. They did pick up C Marcus Camby, but Camby’s been in the league for 15 years. This season, he’s averaging an unhealthy 3.9 points per game.

NBA Championship Odds: +3000
Odds Should Be: +6000

 

Potential to be Big Winners: The Miami Heat and Oklahoma City Thunder are in the running to sign PG Derek Fisher. Although Fisher is definitely past his prime, he’d be awesome with either team. Plus, the man has ice in his veins and having guys like that on your bench is never a bad thing.

Fish will add leadership to either team. He’s well-respected and would make either the Heat or the Thunder even bigger favorites to win the NBA Championship then they already are.