Update: Deal goes down!
Obviously we’re taking a big gamble if this goes down but I’m all for the proactive nature of this deal, once again giving up the #17 pick hurts but I wouldn’t be terribly upset at this move. O’Neal’s game tally over the last four seasons is 44, 51, 69 and 42. Not exactly iron man numbers but sometimes you have to be willing to take a risk to make the team better. O’Neal (when healthy) does provide front-court scoring and rebounding which is welcome on the Raptors any day.
Trading away the #17 pick doesn’t necessarily mean we don’t get a shot at Roy Hibbert or Rush, another trade could always be engineered to grab a pick. However, given the limited number of resources at BC’s disposal, its going to be hard to get back in the first round after we lose Rasho and TJ Ford. Again, giving up Rasho is understandable since the salaries must match (O’Neal makes 20m + for two more years) but that #17 pick doesn’t sit right. As I’ve said before, there is some talent in the teens this year.
This trade will also make O’Neal the highest paid Raptor. Anyway, while the trade rumours are swirling there’s also talk of the Raptors going big in Thursday’s draft. Nicolas Batum is out of the picture and if the article is to be believed, so are CDR and Brandon Rush. To be honest, there’s absolutely nothing worth believing in any media outlet including newspapers, radio, blogs or TV. Nobody will tell you what they’ll be doing in the draft (makes total sense) and there’s no point in mulling and losing your hair over smokescreens.
Here’s a fact though: the Warriors have to make a trade by June 30th if they want to use the 10M exception they received in the Richardson deal. Monta Ellis and Andris Biedrins are off-limits which leaves the Warriors with hardly any trade pieces. With Baron Davis firmly instilled as the franchise player and Pietrus and Barnes free agents, there’s nothing the Raptors would like from that roster and TJ Ford would be a hard sell there.
More workouts scheduled on Monday D.J. White, Vlad Kuljanin, J.J. Hickson, Josh Duncan, Ryan Bell and Jaycee Carroll.
Chris Bosh makes Team USA, this means Tyson Chandler got squeezed out. I’d much rather see him rest and be fresh for the season because as a football fan I’m all too aware of injuries suffered to players on international duty which prevented them from fulfilling club obligations. On the other hand when your country calls, you better answer.