Blogtable: Did Any Team Do Better Than Cavs At Trade Deadline?

Each week, we’ll ask our stable of scribes across the globe to weigh in on the most important NBA topics of the day — and then give you a chance to step on the scale, too, in the comments below.

BLOGTABLE:  Cavs And The Trade Deadline | Kevin Garnett’s Return | Bulls Without Derrick Rose

VIDEO: How teams are integrating new players after trade deadline

> You’ve had a week to absorb the flurry of trades made on deadline day. But did any team outdo the Cavs, who traded for Shumpert, Smith and Mozgov back in early January?

Steve Aschburner, Cavs win. Arron Afflalo and Mo Williams were nice pickups by Portland and Charlotte, respectively. Goran Dragic sure got what he suddenly wanted, and that was a key addition for Miami, though not as big as Chris Bosh’s substraction. But Cleveland needed rim protection and a viable “big,” and got precisely that in Timofey Mozgov. It needed to move Dion Waiters for chemistry and sanity, and it did precisely that, too. Iman Shumpert and J.R. Smith brought much-needed qualities, too, and are better players on a contender, under LeBron James’ watchful eye (that was mostly for J.R.).

Fran Blinebury, No.  It’s only fair to give a month or so to let trades settle in and I like what OKC did by strengthening its bench, though the continued nagging injuries and another minor surgery for Kevin Durant will slow the evaluation period.  Over the long run and assuming that Chris Bosh makes a full recovery, I like the addition of Goran Dragic in Miami.  Meanwhile the Cavs have gone from staggering around aimlessly to becoming the team to beat in East since making their deals early.

Scott Howard-Cooper, I thought the Heat and the Trail Blazers had particularly good days. Miami took an important step for the future by acquiring Goran Dragic, assuming, and probably safely assuming, it re-signs Dragic. They can look to him as the starting point guard for years to come. Portland got deeper without giving up a key asset. While Dragic/Heat was more about the long-term for a team that isn’t in the championship mix, Arron Afflalo/Trail Blazers is an immediate boost for a roster that should be looking at a postseason run.

Shaun Powell, I wouldn’t say the Thunder out-did the Cavs but in due time their haul might pull equal. We’ll see. Enes Kanter, D.J. Augustin, Kyle Singler and Steve Novak were all necessary additions and three of them, or maybe all four, could figure somewhat prominently in OKC’s post-season. Two long-distance shooters, a backup point guard and an offensive-minded center can only help. The new Cavs have the benefit of time, since they arrived earlier, so we’ve already seen their impact. Here’s a suggestion: How about OKC and the Cavs meet up in the NBA Finals? They can settle the issue there.

John Schuhmann, No. No team more directly addressed their needs than the Cavs, who improved a bottom-10 defense by adding Timofey Mozgov and Iman Shumpert, and added some much needed depth on the wings (where they were counting on a rookie second round pick at times) with Shumpert and J.R. Smith. The addition-by-subtraction move of sending Dion Waiters to Oklahoma City can’t be ignored either. Oklahoma City reinforced its bench at the deadline, but that deal had a lot to do with Reggie Jackson’s unwillingness to be there, and the Thunder didn’t need a trade as much as they need a healthy Kevin Durant. The Heat addressed a real need at point guard, but Goran Dragic could opt out this summer and the Chris Bosh situation takes away the pick-and-pop big that would have made Dragic especially tough to defend.

Sekou Smith, I don’t know if they “outdid” them or not, but I love what the Thunder did in remaking their bench with the additions of D.J. Agustin, Enes Kanter, Steve Novak and Kyle Singler. They did jettison one of my favorite players in the league in Reggie Jackson, who clearly had to go somewhere to run his own team (and Detroit is a great landing spot for him). With rookie big man Mitch McGary stepping up and Kanter showing some early signs, the Thunder have a young big man rotation (that also includes my main man Blunt Force Trauma himself, Steven Adams) that should be the envy of the league. It might not take this season but a year from now, a healthy roster with these guys holding down the middle, looks formidable.

Ian Thomsen, NBA.comWhat is interesting about the moves by Cleveland and Oklahoma City is that both teams are trying to win the championship right now. I’m guessing it will be easier for the Thunder to integrate Enes Kanter and the array of new shooters. But if Perkins and Shumpert are able to instantly improve the defensive focus and toughness, then the upside may be higher in Cleveland.

Lang Whitaker,’s All Ball blog: To be honest, I still don’t think I’ve processed everything that happened at the trade deadline, which felt like an elaborate set-up for the greatest all-time edition of “Who He Play For?” While I like what Houston managed to do, adding a backcourt defender (Prigioni) and an elite wing athlete (McDaniels), A lot of the other trades felt like they were targeting the future. So from that standpoint, I think Cleveland made out the best. I was bullish on the trade at the time, because they added three quality players to a team that already had a lot of quality players, who’ve had an immediate, tangible impact. And they may not have made a trade at the deadline, but picking up Kendrick Perkins just continues to elevate their overall talent level.

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  1. harriethehawk says:

    No Jake S. I don’t. Make no mistake, I love OKC, just like the Hawks. Can they win the title this year? I think they should of won for the last 3 years. But Kevin Durant is key and I think they are playing down the severity of his injury. I don’t think OKC is going to get much out of him. And as OUTSTANDING as Russell Westbrook is, they can’t get to the promise land with our MVP. And that makes me sad….

  2. jake s. says:

    Perk will be lucky to see quality time. I love what he has done for the Thunder as far as leadership goes but that’s just about all he can offer. On a team that boasts Lebron James I don’t think that matters very much. He is a solid body blocker down low but he is irrelevant against teams with smaller shooting lineups. We’ve seen it over and over again with OKC.

  3. harriethehawk says:

    Neither OKC or Cleveland will be in the Finals. Cause it will be my Hawks and either the Golden Flake Warriors or Memphis Grizzlies. How do you like them apples??

  4. curtjester1 says:

    Cleveland’s C didn’t quite come at the trade deadline and Perkins is not an upside to Kanter who will be a force years to come. It all depends on what you like, the NOW vs the OVERALL. I really didn’t see anybody taking it in the negative and all got rid of players with draft picks or got what they wanted. The blogs I have read said OKC and Celtics might have made the best moves. Can’t quite disagree.

  5. Indiana'sownLarryBird says:

    It would of been nice to see the Pacer’s make some trade’s.

  6. Makapatakki says:

    Yah big chance OKC and cleaveland in the finals brah – “How about OKC and the Cavs meet up in the NBA Finals? They can settle the issue there.”

    • ajax says:

      Its only not a big chance because its borderline impossible to pick a team from either conference at this point. But given how both teams are playing of late, its a more likely combination than many of the other potential finals.

      • asasaa says:

        Only atlanta can beat the cavs in the east at this point in my opinion, Chicago is already breaking down, rose out with another knee injury, and rapotors doesnt stand a chance against cleveland in a 7 game series. id put my money on Atlanta vs Cavs in the ECF.

        The West is wide open as you said.