AK1984's 2009 Mock Draft: Version 2.0!

Ladies And Gentleman,

We've given you what we think will happen and what we think should happen.  Now, from the fan posts, I give you AK1984's "What would happen if I'm brilliant beyond all belief and can predict trades and everything" mock draft.  It's amazing(ly long after the jump.)



1st Pick (Los Angeles Clippers)




PF Blake Griffin (Oklahoma) [Sophomore] {3/16/1989}

According to most reports, the Los Angeles Clippers seem hell-bent on drafting Blake Griffin. Regardless of the possibility that this may be a smokescreen by Mike Dunleavy, Sr., it appears that Griffin is his man—no matter Zach Randolph.

Now, if Griffin is indeed the choice, then Randolph will probably be on the move sometime after the July moratorium and before the 2009-2010 season; otherwise, there’ll be a glut of power forwards in Los Angeles.

For Randolph, though, I can’t see the Clippers getting anything more than salary relief — such as the rotting carcass of Jerome James and a return of the useless Tim Thomas from the Chicago Bulls — in return for him this summer. Then again, salary relief for Randolph would be addition by subtraction.

Trade #1



The Los Angeles Clippers trade Chris Kaman to the Oklahoma City Thunder for Earl Watson and Chucky Atkins; the Thunder subsequently waive Atkins, whose salary is partially guaranteed for just $760,000 during the 2009-2010 season.

For the Los Angeles Clippers, the team cuts future salary obligations and clears out some of its surplus of frontline players. Even if the Clippers are still stuck with Randolph to start the season, at least in this case there’d be 32 minutes of playing time to go around for him, Marcus Camby, and Blake Griffin — with spot minutes for DeAndre Jordan and Brian Skinner — so it shouldn’t be too tenuous of a situation.

For the Oklahoma City Thunder, the team acquires a starting center in Chris Kaman to add to its frontline rotation of Jeff Green, Nenad Krstic, Nick Collison, and D.J. White. While Kaman was hurt a bit last season and saw his production dwindle from the 2007-2008 campaign, it’s reasonable to expect that he’s once again a double-double threat when at 100% health.

2nd Pick (Memphis Grizzlies)



PG Ricky Rubio (DKV Joventut) [International] {10/21/1990}

Even with Mike Conley, Jr. already on the Memphis Grizzlies, Chris Wallace would be foolish to pass on Spanish sensation Ricky Rubio if Blake Griffin is already off the board by the 2nd pick.

Unfortunately for Wallace and his co-workers, though, Rubio has made it known through his agent -- which is Dan Fegan (i.e., the guy who ultimately got Yi Jianlian out of Milwaukee) -- that he wants nothing to do with Memphis.


"Rubio doesn't want to go to Memphis, and he especially does not want to pay money out of his own pocket with that huge buyout for the honor of doing so."

So, even if the Grizzlies do call Rubio's bluff and select him, my bet is that he'll eventually have his draft rights traded to a desired destination; otherwise, he'll just hang out in Europe and play for DKV Joventut through the 2010-2011 season.

3rd Pick (Oklahoma City Thunder)



SG James Harden (Arizona State) [Sophomore] {8/26/1989}

Between James Harden and Hasheem Thabeet, it’s my belief that Harden would make a more immediate impact on the Oklahoma City Thunder. As was with Brandon Roy in 2006, Harden gets knocked for not having an enormous upside to his game; however, his refined isolation game on offense is perfect for the NBA, while he’s also well-built for a shooting guard and a solid rebounder for a guy at that position.

Next to Russell Westbrook, the only questions surrounding that backcourt tandem would be mediocre jump shooting shooting and a propensity for turnovers. Alongside fellow wing player Kevin Durant, there’s be some glaring problems defensively — since a disgustingly putrid defensive player like Durant is surely better off playing with a defensive-minded guy such as Kyle Weaver or Thabo Sefolosha — nonetheless, there’s no doubt that they’d form a dynamic duo on offense.

4th Pick (Sacramento Kings)



PG Brandon Jennings (Lottomatica Roma) [International] {9/23/1989}

The Sacramento Kings need a point guard, pure and simple. So, even though I’m not sold on Brandon Jennings — who’s been compared to guys like Damon Stoudamire, Kenny Anderson, Rod Strickland, et al. — the Kings are in a position to draft solely on need here. Hell, Beno Udrih obviously isn’t cutting it All in all, Jennings may backfire on the team in the long run; yet, it just makes perfect sense at this point in time.

5th Pick (Washington Wizards)



PF Jordan Hill (Arizona) [Junior] {7/27/1987}

For the Washington Wizards, there’s been talk that Jordan Hill would be a nice choice — since Antawn Jamison is very soft on offense and weak defensively at power forward, as well as lacking a quick first step offensively and too laterally slow on defense at small foward — while Hasheem Thabeet might also be a nice choice due to the oft-injured Brendan Haywood being in the last year of his contract, JaVale McGee being a slight disappointment as a rookie, Etan Thomas being on his last legs, and Oleksiy Pecherov being a bottomless pile of suck.

I, however, believe that the Wizards owner Abe Pollin will demand his front office personnel to trade down from the #5 pick this season for financial reasons (i.e., to avoid paying the luxury tax next season). So, while the Wizards will officially pick Hill, he'll probably soon be on the move elsewhere.

6th Pick (Minnesota Timberwolves)



C Hasheem Thabeet (Connecticut) [Junior] {2/16/1987}

If Hasheem Thabeet slips by both the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Washington Wizards, there’s no way that the Minnesota Timberwolves can pass up on a defensive anchor in the post. With defensive sieves like Al Jefferson, Kevin Love, and Craig Smith currently making up its frontline rotation — while scrubs Mark Madsen and Brian Cardinal ride the pine — a 7’3" tall monster with Dikembe Mutombo-esque potential would be a grand addition for the Timberwolves.

7th Pick (Golden State Warriors)



PF Earl Clark (Louisville) [Junior] {1/17/1988}

With Robert Rowell, Larry Riley, and Don Nelson at the helm, the Golden State Warriors are in complete disarray. While I’m of the belief that Earl Clark is a prospect solely on talent alone and has a mediocre skill set, he’s nevertheless the kind of tall and lanky high-volume shooter at power forward who’d draw Nelson’s attention.

As was with Anthony Randolph last season and Brandan Wright the year before that, however, Clark would soon find his way in Nelson’s doghouse. So, as the old adage goes, those who don’t learn from their past mistakes in history are doomed to repeat them. Heck, Rowell’s recent hiring of Nelson’s buddy Riley to the GM position indicates the more things change in Oakland the more they stay the same there.

Oh, and sometime after the July moratorium and before the 2009-2010, I wouldn’t be shocked to see the Golden State Warriors and Los Angeles Clippers sign off on a blockbuster deal like Jamal Crawford and Corey Maggette — so long as Crawford doesn’t exercise his early termination option — for Baron Davis, Al Thornton, and salary filler (e.g., Mardy Collins). Collins, of course, would be immediately released in that scenario.

8th Pick (New York Knicks)



SG Stephen Curry (Davidson) [Junior] {3/14/1988}

While I believe Stephen Curry is the next in a long line of unathletic, undersized, one-dimensional shooters like J.J. Redick, Trajan Langdon, and Shawn Respert, Mike D’Antoni probably sees in him a perfect fit at shooting guard within that goddamn fast-paced, run-‘n’-gun offensive scheme. Luckily for Curry, though, an up-tempo offense would really suit him; plus, a backcourt teammate like Chris Duhon would mask his so-so playmaking abilities and atrocious defense.

With Curry in the fold, moreover, that’d allow Donnie Walsh and D’Antoni to let Nate Robinson ride off into the sunset. That’s not a bad thing, either, since re-signing him to a long-term contract this off-season would’ve cut into the Knicks financial resources heading into the summer of 2010.

Then again, D'Antoni may quickly gaze away from the overrated Curry and have his eyes set on a much bigger prize.

Trade #2



PG Jamaal Tinsley ($6,750,000)

SG Marko Jaric ($6,575,000)
PF Darrell Arthur ($977,160)
PG Ricky Rubio (# 2 Pick)

PG Chris Duhon ($5,585,000)
SG Stephen Curry (#8 Pick)
2012 First-Round Draft Pick
Cash Considerations ($3,000,000)

PF Darius Songaila ($4,234,000)
PF Jordan Hill (#5 Pick)

SG Marko Jaric ($6,575,000)

PG Chris Duhon ($5,585,000)
PF Darius Songaila ($4,234,000)
PF Jordan Hill (#5 Pick)
2012 First-Round Draft Pick (Via New York)
Cash Considerations ($3,000,000)

PG Jamaal Tinsley ($6,750,000)
PG Ricky Rubio (#2 Pick)

PF Darrell Arthur ($977,160)
SG Stephen Curry (#8 Pick)

For the Indiana Pacers, it’s a lateral move that’s made solely to dump the unwanted Jamaal Tinsley.

For the Memphis Grizzlies, Jordan Hill is a power forward who’d complete the team’s starting lineup that already includes center Marc Gasol, small forward Rudy Gay, shooting guard O.J. Mayo, and point guard Mike Conley, Jr. While that’d be an entertaining quintent to watch on offense, they’re all anywhere from below average to abysmal defenders.

Also, as compensation for appeasing Ricky Rubio’s desire to play in a metropolitan area, the Grizzlies would essentially shave a year off of Marko Jaric’s overpriced contract — as Chris Duhon has a contract that expires after next season — along with getting $3,000,000 in cash considerations to pad Michael Heisley’s bank account and, last but certainly not least, a 2012 first-round draft pick as a future asset.

For the New York Knicks, eccentric Cablevision CEO James Dolan would probably wet his pants from the arrival of the shaggy-haired wunderkind, Ricky Rubio, who’s currently worth as much off the court as he is on it. No matter how you slice it, though, Rubio ending up in the Big Apple would be the dawning of a new age. Yet, that notwithstanding, essentially swapping Chris Duhon for Jamaal Tinsley would add an extra $7,500,000 to the team’s books for the 2010-2011 season.

That, therefore, would make moving Eddy Curry’s gigantic contract a necessity this summer, even if it’s in conjuction with a sign-and-trade of David Lee — who’ll command something like a six-year, $60 million contract this summer — to a team needing low-post scoring like the Miami Heat in return for some guys who’ve got expiring contracts (e.g., Mark Blount, Udonis Haslem, Dorell Wright, & Yakhouba Diawara). Otherwise, the Knicks will only have room to sign one maximum-level free-agent rather than two during the 2010 off-season.

For the Washington Wizards, Stephen Curry isn’t the pure point guard who I believe would work best in a backcourt with Gilbert Arenas. Yet, with Arenas being a high-usage player who often hogs the ball, a spot-up shooter like Curry would be a dangerous threat who’d allow Arenas to either iso his man one-on-one or have an efficient shooter to kick the ball out to in double-team situations. Curry and Arenas would be pretty porous defensively, though, so Nick Young would still get his fair share of minutes off of the bench.

Additionally, the Wizards would receive some salary relief in light of parting with Jordan Hill by swapping Darius Songaila for Darrell Arthur. While it ostensibly looks like Hill would be a nice piece in Washington, Antawn Jamison and Caron Butler are allegedly entrenched at the forward positions—regardless of their defensive limitations. The Wizards have a couple of so-so defenders playing behind Jamison and Butler, Andray Blatche and Dominic McGuire, but neither of them are well-rounded players capable of playing a truly substantial role, which is even despite them both earning several starts last season due to injuries.

Trade #3



The New York Knicks trade Jared Jeffries and Wilson Chandler to the Sacramento Kings for Kenny Thomas.

For the New York Knicks, it’s all about slashing future salary obligations in anticipation for the summer of 2010. While Wilson Chandler is a decent player, the Knicks already have a satisfactory stopgap at small forward for next season (i.e., Quentin Richardson) and, moreover, have its proverbial eyes set on LeBron James in the distance.

Regarding Jeffries, a healthy Danilo Gallinari — who’s Mike D’Antoni’s pet project — would push him out of the rotation; thus, he’s expendable both financially and apropos of playing time. All in all, a trade of Jeffries and Chandler to the Sacramento Kings for Kenny Thomas cuts $9,014,282 from the 2010-2011 books.

For the Sacramento Kings, the addition of Wilson Chandler would allow Andres Nocioni to move back to his more natural sixth man role; plus, Jared Jeffries would be an upgrade over Kenny Thomas at the backup power forward spot behind Jason Thompson. Even if restricted free-agent Ike Diogu re-signs with the Kings, Jeffries would still provide the team with someone with a different skill set off of the bench.

9th Pick (Toronto Raptors)



SG Gerald Henderson (Duke) [Junior] {12/9/1987}

Shawn Marion and Anthony Parker are unrestricted free agents this off-season, so replenishing its depth at the wing positions is a much-needed move by the Toronto Raptors. Henderson, who doesn’t necessarily have a lot of upside, is a well-rounded player — especially on the defensive end — who’d make a more immediate impact than a project like Tyreke Evans.

10th Pick (Milwaukee Bucks)



PF James Johnson (Wake Forest) [Sophomore] {2/20/1987}

The Milwaukee Bucks will have a tough decision to make with its lottery pick during the 2009 NBA Draft, since both power forward Charlie Villanueva and Ramon Sessions are restricted free-agents heading into the off-season. Since Bucks owner Herb Kohl is in cost-cutting mode, it’s likely that just one of Villanueva and Sessions will be retained this summer; therefore, GM John Hammond and head coach Scott Skiles will need to decide which position they want to fill come draft day.

Now, due to the fact that Skiles isn’t too fond of soft players like Villanueva and its easier for a power forward to transition quickly to the NBA game than a point guard, badass James Johnson — who’s fought professionally in MMA bouts — would slide right in by cheaply filling a need for the Bucks. Also, it’d give the Bucks some financial leeway in negotiations with Sessions in its attempt to re-sign him.

Trade #4



The Milwaukee Bucks trade Dan Gadzuric to the Dallas Mavericks for Matt Carroll.

For the Milwaukee Bucks, trading Dan Gazuric for Matt Carroll would cut $2,049,260 from its books for the 2009-2010 season.

For the Dallas Mavericks, Dan Gadzuric would provide the team with some depth at center.

11th Pick (New Jersey Nets)



SF Demar DeRozan (USC) [Freshman] {8/7/1989}

I’m personally of the mindset that Demar DeRozan is dramatically closer to Antoine Wright, Gerald Green, and Rodney Carney than Vince Carter — which is a pie in the sky comparison — however, it’s likely that some team will reach by taking him in the lottery based strictly on potential.

With that in mind, the New Jersey Nets need a long-term solution for its hole at small forward. At shooting guard, Chris Douglas-Roberts is already around to give Vince Carter some cushion; thus, a guy at the other wing position is needed to push Bobby Simmons, Jarvis Hayes, and Trenton Hassell.

So, even if DeRozan is ultimately a bust, he’ll at least give the Nets a slim glimmer of hope in the meantime.

Trade #5



The New Jersey Nets trade Bobby Simmons and Sean Williams to the New Orleans Hornets for Peja Stojakovic.

Regardless of whether or not the New Jersey Nets draft a small forward of the future like Demar DeRozan, that doesn’t change its need of a short-term solution at the position. Although Peja Stojakovic is a piss-poor defender — as is Vince Carter, who was actually underrated defensively until his lateral quickness gave way last season due to age — he’s still an efficient spot-up shooter from downtown over at the weakside corner.

For the New Orleans Hornets, dumping Peja Stojakovic for Bobby Simmons’ expiring contract and reclamation project Sean Williams — who’s fallen out of favor time after time in New Jersey — would cut $14,256,000 in salary obligations for the 2010-2011 season and provide the ballclub with some immediate frontline depth.

12th Pick (Charlotte Bobcats)



SG Tyreke Evans (Memphis) [Freshman] {9/19/1989}

The Charlotte Bobcats are pretty much set at every position over the next few years, with shooting guard being the lone exception. With Raja Bell entering the final year of his contract and about to reach the age of being beyond usefulness, a dribble-drive slasher like Tyreke Evans -- who, although eerily similar to Larry Hughes, should perform well in the right situation -- would be the perfect addition for the Bobcats. For Evans, a year as Bell’s understudy would suit him well for improving his jump shot and adjusting his defense to the NBA style of play.

13th Pick (Indiana Pacers)



SF Terrence Williams (Louisville) [Senior] {6/28/1987}

Despite Brandon Rush’s shocking improvement to end his rookie season, the pending unresticted free agency of Marquis Daniels — as well as the unknown status of the oft-injured Mike Dunleavy, Jr. — could use some help at shooting guard. Even if Jarrett Jack is re-signed and shuffled over from point guard to shooting guard — which’d appease the disgruntled T.J. Ford — depth is still needed at the wing positions.

As a result, Terrence Williams of Louisville makes the most sense here. Williams’ versatile skill set makes him an all-around solid player, which compensates for him not being outstanding at any one thing. So, while Williams doesn’t have the upside of point guards like Johnny Flynn, Ty Lawson, and Eric Maynor, he’s a lot less likely than them to be a bust.

14th Pick (Phoenix Suns)



PG Eric Maynor (Virginia Commonwealth) [Senior] {6/11/1987}

With Steve Nash nearing the end of his career and Goran Dragic showing himself to be nothing but D-League fodder, a point guard is the direction that Steve Kerr and crew should be looking in at this moment. Eric Maynor, who’s got a nice assist-to-turnover ratio in spite of being a high-usage player with a propensity to oftentimes look for his own shot, would be a nice fit for the Phoenix Suns both in trasntion and in half-court sets.

Now, with regards to Steve Nash, I expect him to be dealt to the Toronto Raptors for Jose Calderon and salary filler (e.g., Kris Humphries) sometime soon after the July moratorium. Since Calderon and Humphries are currently base-year compensation players, a deal like that can’t be made at this point in time.

In any event, though, Calderon would give the Suns a top-notch starting point guard for now — while Maynor would come off of the bench with Leandro Barbosa — while the Raptors would get a cash cow in Nash, who's a Canadian legend. For the Raptors, selling tickets and somehow convincing Chris Bosh to sign a long-term extension — which is an altogether doubtful proposition — are vastly more important to the franchise than winning next season. That’s business for you, though.

15th Pick (Detroit Pistons)



PF DeJuan Blair (Pittsburgh) [Sophomore] {4/22/1989}

For the Detroit Pistons, the selection of DeJuan Blair would be on the behalf of another franchise.

16th Pick (Chicago Bulls)



PG Ty Lawson (North Carolina) [Junior] {11/3/1987}

With both James Johnson and DeJuan Blair already off of the board — along with Patrick Patterson returning to Kentucky — Gani Lawal is the best availalbe banger. Lawal, however, is extremely raw and wouldn’t provide the Chicago Bulls with an immediate help on its frontline. As a result, the Bulls may as well select the best available player left in Ty Lawson.

Despite being undersized, Lawson is a heady floor general and outstanding long-range shooter for a point guard. Lawson is quick as hell and an outstanding ball handler, too, which’ll come in handy as Derrick Rose’s backup. With Lawson in the fold, though, that’d mean Lindsey Hunter is ready for retirement and Kirk Hinrich would be put squarely on the trading block.

Trade #6



The Chicago Bulls trade Kirk Hinrich to the Portland Trail Blazers for Steve Blake, Travis Outlaw, and the draft rights of Petteri Koponen; the Bulls would subsequently waive Blake and Outlaw, whose salaries are non-guaranteed for the 2009-2010 season if they’re cut on or before 6/30/2009.

For the Chicago Bulls, trading Kirk Hinrich for nothing but immediate salary relief would allow the team to re-sign Ben Gordon this off-season without going over the luxury tax next season.

For the Portland Trail Blazers, Kirk Hinrich is a lockdown perimeter defender and efficient shooter from beyond the arc. Alongside Brandon Roy in the backcourt, Hinrich is the perfect player to mask Roy’s solid, yet unspectacular three-point shooting and subpar defense.

17th Pick (Philadelphia 76ers)



SG Jrue Holiday (UCLA) [Freshman] {6/12/1990}

For the Philadelphia 76ers, the team should select a combo guard who’s a first-rate defender and capable of running the offense when Andre Iguodala is on the bench. Without question, Jrue Holiday is the perfect fit for that position.

Since Willie Green and Louis Williams are better suited playing off the ball — while Royal Ivey ought to be a third-stringer who doesn’t garner regular minutes in the rotation — Holiday could definitely fill at least some of the void that’ll be left by the likely departure of Andre Miller.

18th Pick (Minnesota Timberwolves)



PG Johnny Flynn (Syracuse) [Sophomore] {2/6/1989}

With Sebastian Telfair receiving numerous starts at point guard last season, it’s painfully obvious that the Minnesota Timberwolves need some major help there. Consequently, a dribble-drive/drive-and-dish distributor like Flynn would be the perfect guy to push Telfair next season.

While Flynn has some questions surrounding his recklessness, mediocre long-range shooting percentages, and defensive intenstiy, those aren’t negative qualities that’ve prevented Fred Hoiberg, Jim Stack, and/or Rob Babcock from going after a player in the past.

19th Pick (Atlanta Hawks)



PF Gani Lawal (Georgia Tech) [Sophomore] {11/7/1988}

The Altanta Hawks are in a bit of flux, for its roster could be shaped in many ways this off-season. One spot that could use improvement is the backup power forward spot, as restricted free-agent Solomon Jones was an all-around average player — except for his relatively high field-goal shooting percentage — who could be easily replaced through the 2009 NBA Draft. Thus, with Gani Lawal, the Hawks would have a local product who could bang down low with the big boys for short spurts as a rookie.

Of course, the Hawks definitely need to make some other moves this off-season — such as re-signing both Mike Bibby and Zaza Pachulia using their Bird rights, re-signing Ronald "Flip" Murray to a two-year contract with the bi-annual exception, signing a true center (e.g., Marcin Gortat) with the mid-level exception to allow Al Horford and Josh Smith to shuffle down to their natural positions of power forward and small forward, and even possibly re-signing backup forwards Marvin Williams and Josh Childress to one-year contracts worth their respective qualifying offers — otherwise, the ballclub will continue to trudge through the waters of mediocrity with scrubs like Othello Hunter, Thomas Gardner, and Mario West taking up space on its roster.

Trade #7



The Atlanta Hawks trade Craig Claxton and Maurice Evans to the Milwaukee Bucks for Luke Ridnour and Charlie Bell.

For the Atlanta Hawks, Luke Ridnour would provide the team with a fallback if Mike Bibby decides to sign elsewhere this off-season. Yet, even if Bibby re-signs with the ballclub, Ridnour would be an upgrade at the backup point guard spot over Acie Law.

For the Milwaukee Bucks, trading Luke Ridnour and Charlie Bell for Craig Claxton and Maurice Evans would cut $2,393,506 from its books for the 2009-2010 season.

20th Pick (Utah Jazz)



PF Tyler Hansbrough (North Carolina) [Senior] {11/3/1985}

Because realistically there’s room to re-sign only one of Carlos Boozer and Paul Millsap this off-season — with Millsap almost 100% assured of being the guy who’ll return next season — a backup power forward is a must-have addition.

With that noted, Tyler Hansbrough seems like the perfect fit to play within Jerry Sloan’s UCLA high-post offense — with a second unit of Kosta Koufos, him, Matt Harpring, Kyle Korver, and whoever the team signs this summer to play behind Deron Williams (e.g., Blake Ahearn) potentially being a full-on whitewash — although I can envision Kevin O’Connor selecting a point guard like Darren Collison or Nick Calathes to possibly replace either Brevin Knight or Ronnie Price, who are both unrestricted free-agents.

21st Pick (New Orleans Hornets)



C B.J. Mullens (Ohio State) [Freshman] {N/A}

The New Orleans Hornets can afford to take a chance on a high-risk/high-reward project like B.J. Mullens, who’s been compared most favorably to Brad Daughtery, moderately favorably to Chris Kaman, and unfavorably to the likes of Kwame Brown, Robert Swift, and Patrick O’Bryant. For Mullens, he’d definitely be a third-string pivotman behind the oft-injured/much-maligned Tyson Chandler and Hilton Armstrong.

Oddly, Mullens is entering the league with the same question of rawness that surrounded Chanlder and the same question of stone hands that surrounded Armstrong. Yet, even if Mullens is turns into a total bust, he’s still no worse than Melvin Ely at the moment and isn’t a reach with the 21st pick in the 2009 NBA Draft. If anything, Mullens might buck the odds and turn out to be a nifty steal.

22nd Pick (Dallas Mavericks)



SF Chase Budinger (Arizona) [Junior] {12/31/1987}

Rather than explain my whole rational behind the Dallas Mavericks drafting Chase Budinger, let me instead detail my thoughts on how that franchise should handle itself this off-season.

1. Draft an offensive-minded swingman in the first round. 

2. Prior to 7/1/2009, trade Matt Carroll to the Milwaukee Bucks for Dan Gadzuric. 

3. Prior to 7/1/2009, trade Erick Dampier, Jerry Stackhouse, and $3 million in cash considerations to the Phoenix Suns for Shaquille O’Neal. 

4. Tender restricted free-agent Ryan Hollins to a one-year, $1,215,726 qualfying offer (i.e., 125% of his previous annual salary).

5. Re-sign Jason Kidd to a one-year, $10 million contract.

6. Re-sign Brandon Bass to a five-year deal with his Early Bird rights that starts at the mid-level exception, but has annual raises of 10.5% rather than 8%.

7a. Sign Raymond Felton or Nate Robinson to a five-year offer sheet -- which could be matched by their old teams, since they're both restricted free-agents -- with the mid-level exception.

7b. Rather than sign Felton or Robinson, though, another option would be to sign a tall, defensive-minded veteran point guard from Europe (e.g., Dimitris Diamantidis) to a two-year deal with the mid-level exception; yet, in that case, Jose Barea would stay in the starting lineup, while the newcomer would come off of the bench with Jason Terry.

8. Release Shawne Williams, who’s officially a bust.

9. Release Devean George, who’s finished as a player.

10. Sign a few experienced veterans (e.g., Sean Marks, Damon Jones, & Kevin Ollie) or a few D-League standouts (e.g., Richard Hendrix, Luke Jackson, & Will Conroy) to one-year, minimum-level contracts.

C: Shaquille O’Neal
C: Dan Gadzuric
C: Ryan Hollins
PF: Dirk Nowitzki
PF: Brandon Bass
PF: Sean Marks/Richard Hendrix
SF: Josh Howard
SF: Chase Budinger
SF: Antoine Wright
SG: Raymond Felton/Nate Robinson
SG: Jason Terry
SG: Damon Jones/Luke Jackson
PG: Jason Kidd
PG: Jose Barea
PG: Kevin Ollie/Will Conroy

Unless O’Neal and/or Kidd falls apart or injuries are an issue, that’d probably be a 55-win team.


Oh, and on the topic of that above Shaquille O’Neal trade, the Phoenix Suns would possibly do it because Jerry Stackhouse’s salary for the 2009-2010 season is only partially guaranteed for $2,000,000 — so he’d be waived immediately after the trade — while Erick Dampier’s salary for the 2010-2011 season is fully unguaranteed if he doesn’t meet certain performance clauses.

23rd Pick (Sacramento Kings)


SG Jeff Teague (Wake Forest) [Sophomore] {6/10/1988}

With Bobby Jackson seemingly ready to call it a career, the Sacramento Kings could use a high-volume shooting gunner -- which admittedly aren't my favorite type of players -- to fill his role on the roster. So, while I think Teague is no better than the Eddie House's and the C.J. Watson's of the world, there's no denying that those type of guys have a place in the NBA.

24th Pick (Portland Trail Blazers)


SF Austin Daye (Gonzaga) [Sophomore] {6/5/1988}

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