Thursday, February 21, 2008

Cavs get Ben Wallace

No joke: I was right in the middle of writing that the Cavs were working out a blockbuster deal for Bulls big man Ben Wallace when the magic refresh button sent Cavs fans for a fresh pair of pants. The Cavs are getting Wallace, as well as Wally Szczerbiak from the Sonics, ESPN reports. Larry Hughes, Drew Gooden, Cedric Simmons and Shannon Brown are out.

Could it have gone any better for the Cavs? Everyone has been screaming for LeBron to get some help, and now he has it in the best possible way. Wallace isn't what he was in Detroit, but he can still bring in the boards and play defense. An argument can also be made that his mediocre production this year is the result of his playing on the hapless Bulls. Wallace will undoubtedly produce much more with a supporting cast around him.

As it stands, what the Cavs had to give up was pennies on the dollar. This was a matter of quantity and quality. Name one person the Cavs gave up that could easily be labeled as indispensable. Drew Gooden was productive, but Wallace is a better defender, and he will make Ilgauskas a better player. Wally is a better pure shooter than Larry Hughes. Cleveland is making the leap they needed. Cavs fans should be excited, and, by the looks of things, they are. It's tough to satisfy a fan base at a trade deadline, but Cleveland's done it.

Other deals

  • The Dallas Morning News has apparently received enough emails complaining about the Jason Kidd trade to overload an inbox, but Tim Cowlishaw writes that the trade can only make the Mavs better. Can't argue with that. After the Lakers' blockbuster for Pau Gasol and Phoenix's surprise trade for Shaq, you knew Mark Cuban was going to do something to show that his team wasn't standing pat, and this was about as good as it was going to get.
  • The Hornets also made a move, getting Bonzie Wells and Mike James from the Rockets for backup point guard Bobby Jackson and two other players. I don't think this was the kind of trade New Orleans wanted or needed. They hold the best record in the West right now, but can you really make the argument that they're better than the Lakers and Suns? I don't think they're as cut out for a battle for the title as the other elites in their conference, best record or not.
  • Vince Carter isn't going least for now. The Nets have left open the possibility of a trade down the road, but the Nets are still adamant about making the playoffs, and without a little charity and divine intervention, that isn't going to happen without Carter.
More NBA trade stuff later tonight when the dust has settled. Plus baseball goodness.

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