The first big trade of the NBA season has finally occurred, moving highly paid forward Rudy Gay from the Memphis Grizzlies to the Toronto Raptors, pure point guard Jose Calderon and emerging big man Ed Davis to the Detroit Pistons and Grizzlies, respectively, and veteran glue guy Tayshaun Prince from Detroit to Memphis. The deal is going to have reverberations that run deep -- each player is moving on from the only teams they've ever known. Toronto is taking a big risk on a big-salaried player, Memphis is trying to explain to its fan base that they can still compete for a championship and Detroit is waving goodbye to the last player from its latest championship era. But there are winners and losers to every deal and this one is no different. While its premature to pass real judgement on anything before the players actually step on the court with their new teams we can share a gut-level feeling on how this might shake out. Winner Detroit Pistons This deal was a literal no-brainer for Joe Dumars. Not that saying goodbye to a player that has meant as much to an organization as Prince has meant to the Pistons, but Detroit is shedding itself of significant long-term salary, and might be getting the most productive player in the deal in Calderon. Jose, incidentally, is the first real point guard Motown has had since trading Chauncey Billups. Detroit and Calderon can both use the second half of the season as a test run on a possible long-term relationship. If things click Detroit can re-sign him in the offseason and if not he can move on. Loser Toronto Raptors I'm just not seeing what they see in Rudy Gay. Yes, he is a good player and will probably be so for the next several years. But he's not worth $37 million for the next two years. And it's not like the Raptors were one player away, either. They have a couple good pieces but Gay doesn't turn them into contenders. And by the time they might actually be a quality playoff team Gay will be close to out the door.
Who are the winners and losers of 3-team deal?
Detroit Bad Boys | Jan 31