The Warriors and Bucks executed the first major swap of talent in advance of Thursday's trade deadline. The particulars: the Warriors send Monta Ellis, Ekpe Udoh, and Kwame Brown's contract to Milwaukee in exchange for Andrew Bogut and Stephen Jackson. In reality, it's a gamble by the Warriors that a healthy Stephen Curry, Andrew Bogut, and David Lee can be a competitive core next season, while the Bucks strengthen their push for the Eastern Conference playoffs by replacing inactive players some offense and some defense. As for the fantasy impact...
Golden State Warriors
PG: Stephen Curry, Nate Robinson, Charles Jenkins
SG: Klay Thompson, Dominic McGuire, Stephen Jackson
SF: Dorell Wright, Brandon Rush
PF: David Lee, Chris Wright
C: Andris Biedrins, Jeremy Tyler, Andrew Bogut
The Warriors clearly are looking ahead to next season, so what immediately becomes more interesting is the possibility of the team (finally) shutting Curry down. Everyone has been adamant up until now that it wasn't a consideration, but that very well could change, particularly if he has so much as a minor tweak of anything on his body in the near future. Nate Robinson would be the obvious winner in that scenario, but that of course is hypothetical. Klay Thompson is the obvious backcourt upgrade in the wake of the trade - he's the new starting shooting guard and Ellis averaged 36 minutes per game. Thompson was uneven in his start on Tuesday (43 minutes, 14 points, 6-19 FG, 0-5 3PT, 4 boards, 5 assists) but clearly is the team's future at the position, so he's going to get the benefit of the doubt. He's been money from long range (44% on the season) and shown some reasonable categorial potential overall - his per-36s on the season include 16.5 points, 2.6 threes, 3.8 boards, 2.8 assists, 2.2 turnovers, and 0.9 steals - but you should expect his FG% to take a hit as a starter and I don't consider Thompson a must-add in standard leagues. Minutes on the wing will be largely influenced by what happens with S-Jax - there are rumors that the Warriors will try to flip him but it's unlikely that a market for his "services" actually exists. Dorell Wright remains the starter at small forward and Mark Jackson loves both Rush and McGuire in their reserve roles, so that means gridlock. For that reason, it remains difficult to get overly-excited about any of the parties involved.
The trade leaves the Warriors desperately thin at power forward/center - in a perfect world, that would be addressed by shipping Jackson to another team. As it stands, Mark Jackson has no choice but to give Biedrins heavy minutes (30 minutes, 6 points, 4 boards, 3 steals, 2 blocks on Tuesday), and Lee will see time in the middle when the Warriors employ smaller looks. Upgrade Lee in general - his usage will climb with Monta out of the picture. Tyler is first big off the bench but being merely competent while avoiding excessive fouls is the most that can be asked.
PG: Brandon Jennings, Beno Udrih
SG: Monta Ellis, Shaun Livingston
SF: Carlos Delfino, Mike Dunleavy, Tobias Harris
PF: Ersan Ilyasova, Luc Richard Mbah a Moute, Jon Leuer
C: Drew Gooden, Ekpe Udoh, Larry Sanders, Jon Brockman
Udoh's impact on the Bucks is obvious - he'll form a three-man rotation at the big positions with Gooden and Ilyasova and help ease the minutes workload for the latter two. Both Gooden and Ilyasova have averaged 35 minutes over the past two weeks, but the minutes should be shared equally moving forward. Gooden and Ilyasova take a hit by virtue of a few less minutes, and they also will lose usage with Ellis now on the roster. Downgrade both players, but neither is going to see their values fall off the map.
Ellis' presence of course will alter the Bucks on offense, if only because he's used to elite usage rates. The hope here is that Ellis taking some of the pressure off of Jennings on offense will lead to more quality looks, and thus help to up his shooting percentages. You'd rather have Jennings getting 14-15 shots than the 18-19 he's been attempting lately, anyway, so this could work. But the learning curve will be steep and quick, and neither Jennings nor Ellis is the "off the ball" type, so the best you can say is that trade isn't likely to completely tank either player's fantasy value. You can forget about Dunleavy's rising impact - he and Delfino should settle in with around 30 minutes but won't have much of a role on offense outside of spot-up threes. Count on Scott Skiles running a tight eight-man rotation through the end of the season, featuring Jennings, Ellis, Ilysasova, Gooden, Udoh, Delfino, Dunleavy, and Udrih.
- Monta Ellis
- Andrew Bogut
- The Warriors
- Golden State Warriors
- Stephen Curry
- Stephen Jackson
- David Lee