Three team trades are always fascinating. They almost never look even at first look and takes a long time to decipher winners and losers from them if you can ever. Most of the time two teams are the main action while the other more or less serves as a catalyst to make the deal work whether taking or sending on bad contracts, sending or receiving picks or money.
This deal proved no different as the we had a clear centerpiece here, a few fringe players and pick, there’s always some picks. So the Los Angeles Clippers received star forward Danilo Gallinari from Denver in a sign and trade for $65 million over three years while the Atlanta Hawks received Clippers shooting guard Jamal Crawford, backup center Diamond Stone also from LA and the Clippers first rounder (which is actually Houston’s first rounder) and the Denver Nuggets receive Atlanta’s second round 2019 pick (which is actually Washington’s second rounder).
All three of these teams are in a state of flux different as they may be. Each have a different set of motivations and this trade gave provided us a window into what they are. Some of the parties here will see immediate effects of this move while others will carefully stack assets for future consideration. But as always after the initial eye test and some further contemplation an opinion has been cajoled out of me and I have to let y’all know about it, sorry not sorry. So here’s who I think either benefited or got bamboozled the most out of this trade.
Winner: Danilo Gallinari
Three years and $65 million for a guy that has only played in 63% of the possible amount of games over his 9 year career? ONLY IN AMERICA!!! So the verdict is out on whether or not he can stay on the floor enough to be effective and the track record for players overcoming major or frequent injury problems early in their career and becoming an impact player isn’t that good. But when he’s on the floor he’s good, like a dude you def want on your squad good. And there’s reason to believe that he’ll be good next year since he posted career highs in field goal and three point percentage at 45% and 39% respectively. His ability to spread the floor will allow Blake and their bevy of guards to work freely while being the beneficiary of plenty of open looks.
Winner: Denver Nuggets
It’s pretty obvious what their objective was here and they achieved it. The Nuggets just signed Paul Milsap to a lucrative three year deal and Gallo had already opted out so they knew he was as good as gone already. The fact that they were able to get something for him (as scant as it is) was just the icing on the cake. But their M.O. here was to get Gallo off of their books and they did it here while gaining an asset.
Winner: Jamal Crawford
J Crossover probably went through a full range of emotions all in one sentence when he was informed that he was getting traded to the Atlanta Hawks (awwwww) but is most likely going to bought out (YES!!!). Crawford is most definitely in the twilight of his career and would probably prefer playing on a contender or at least a more successful situation than Atlanta. And luckily for him the market has been pretty warm for him.
Loser: Atlanta Hawks
It’s easy to look at the Atlanta Hawks’ off-season as a whole and simply classify it as a fail. I mean this is a team that has no more starters left from a 60 win team from just three seasons ago. After losing the last of this group in Paul Milsap Atlanta is looking at tanking. A pretty sad statement for a team that has maintained at least moderate success for the past decade but it has to be done. Sometimes you gotta go low in the short term in order to succeed in long term. We won’t know how it will work out for a long time but in the current it seems like the right play even if it hurts their pride.
Too Early To tell: Los Angeles Clippers
Y’all had to know this one was coming. Los Angeles has been one of the more active teams this summer and aren’t showing any signs of slowing down. With this trade they were able to fill a need that they have had for years at the small forward position as well as move off of a couple of guys in order to create space for a usable body. Gallo’s arrival also provides them with some much needed flexibility in dealing with some of the guys they have on non-guarantee deals.
On the court everything will be predicated on the health of Gallo as well as Blake Griffin. With Blake taking the reigns now that Chris Paul is gone he is geared up to be the……..*sigh* point forward if you will. This will open their offense up and provide opportunities for all of the Clips, especially Gallo. But they both have to stay healthy. Something that both of these gentlemen aren’t exactly known for. However, when full strength a death lineup of P. Bev – Lou Will – Gallo – Blake – Deandre isn’t anything to take lightly. Is it the best defensive group? No. Does this beat the Dubs? Hell no! But for a team that just lost a future HOF point guard this wouldn’t be a bad way to regain some momentum.