This deal is the kind of deal I would like Toronto to do. It involves many players who have been in rumours. It would not sacrifice flexibility. It would not sacrifice young assets or make it tough to develop them. The biggest issue might be some depth lost at nearly all positions. But if we can still get a couple of players for depth back as well thrown in there somewhere, especially a PG, I have no problems at all.
Toronto gets: Pau Gasol, Paul Pierce, Darrell Arthur
LA gets: Bargnani, Gay
Memphis gets: Amir, Courtney Lee, Alan Anderson and Antawn Jamison
Boston gets: Jose, Fields, Gray, Jordan Hill
There are certainly lots of parts that could change, but basically it goes like this at the core. Toronto gets Pierce and Pau. LAL gets Bargs and Gay, who could both thrive in the D'Antoni system. Gay would get more open looks, and Bargs would move from a 1st option to something like 5th behind Kobe, Dwight, Gay and Nash. Probably the right role for him, and would probably become their 6th man. Boston gets to dump salary with only Fields adding some commitment (but he has a year less than Lee). If they're going into tank mode, I expect whatever trade they make will look like something similar. Memphis gets Jamison, Lee and AA, who can all shoot. Lee and Amir are long-term, but they break up Gay's deal into a smaller total with 2 parts that both have pretty good value contracts should they need to move one again, and both could be good role players on a team like Memphis if they want to keep winning.
Toronto suddenly looks like this:
C: Gasol, JV
PF: Ed, Arthur, Quincy, Kleiza
SF: Pierce, Ross, Pietrus, Kleiza
SG: Demar, Ross
PG: Lowry, Lucas
Fans will hate to lose Amir, but will probably learn to love Arthur for the same reasons. Pau takes the load off JV and starts at C. It's easy to cut Arthur out of the main 3 bigs rotation if JV and Ed keep developing as hoped. Pau and Pierce will both still be very attractive trade pieces next year (as long as they're both healthy enough) with their experience and huge expiring contracts. So if things aren't working, or even if they are but changes need to be made with a long-term focus, it's easy to fix. And we have actually better assets to get a real top tier player if one becomes available. Pierce/Demar + Ed/Gasol + 1st rd pick could far outweigh anything we have to offer this year on the market.
Again, while I trade machine'd this, it could look a bit different, but for some reason, this kind of deal is much more appealing to me than any where we end up with Gay. It would basically give us 2 legit, albeit declining, 1A (or 1B now) type players...Guys who in their prime were borderline franchise players, and both have championship experience. This is something our team badly lacks. It wouldn't hinder the development of any of our young players (even with Pierce, Ross' minutes should go up if we unload AA and/or Fields). It wouldn't destroy flexibility. And it would also have a chance to instantly make us a playoff team, and give our young players firsthand experience. Both Pierce and Gasol would also be incredibly easy to move next year if they're still playing well, much easier than moving Gay and getting something desirable back. That's the thing. If we trade for Gay and he continues to underachieve, once again if BC has to unload someone he acquired, he will have a hard time getting the value he wants and probably get less back than what he gave up for him. But if we get Gasol and Pierce without giving up any of our good young assets, we will have a myriad of options to make any changes to improve the team.
It works too, here it is:
I think any trade like this works in the now and the future. It could save BC his job and not screw the team's future. I think any trade that gets Gay doesn't make us much better, and is just a job saving move without the team's best interests in mind. I think any such trade would force us to build teams as we have before around VC and Bosh, but only with a less talented player.