I'm optimistic about the offseason. If Phil is coming back i think that's a move they make right away. If that doesn't happen we have some good trade chips to improve the roster with & adapt to the new NBA. I hope we're seeing the last of Pau, Nash, Duhon, Morris, maybe MWP unless he opts out to take less. It's so obvious what type of players we lack that I don't know how we can get it wrong.
You have to think Pau's value is high in his expiring year after playing well to close the season. Nash could have value to a couple teams, maybe Phx or Toronto. Lowry would be great & Phoenix has some really nice pieces to compliment Dwight. I don't think we get Phx to give up Dragic without giving up Pau too, but that's worth looking at. They're really down on Beasley so they'd look at it as a plus to include him. Dudley would be a big upgrade over MWP with all the spot up 3's he'd get. Shannon barely played to close the season & seems to be on the outs there, he's probably another easy throw in that fits. PHX would still be 1M or so from the trade working & that's if they're willing to take on salary, they might want to include Scola too with Pau making him redundant. They're probably done with JO as well might as well add him in.
So Nash, Pau for Dragic, Beasley, Dudley, Shannon, Scola, JO. 6 for 2 is kinda crazy so send Ebanks, Sacre & Morris too, cheap young expirings they can afford to risk a season on in their position. It makes sense for Phx because they only have 4M of cap space & aren't even a playoff team. Nash, Pau, Gortat, Morris, Frye returning?, Johnson re-signed?.. They could stay as good/possibly improve on their season this year while shedding 5 long term contracts, & getting rid of 3 guys that they don't seem to want. They'd probably make more money since Nash would still be a huge draw there.
So why for us? Why give up having cap space in 14/15 for the role players from a lottery team? Maybe I'm crazy but the pieces seem to fit perfectly. Dragic is a great young PG that can be relied on for big minutes, can hit spot up 3's & isn't old & slow most importantly. Beasley, I know alot of you remember when this board was crazy for Beasley in the Pau to Minne talks.. I was one of those people & I still think he'd be a great fit for this team. Instant offense off the bench & quick enough to help with our problems in transition. Dudley is one of the better 3 point shooters in the game & plays solid defense, gives us a solid player at a position where we currently have no depth. Scola is basically diet Pau. I wanted no parts of him before he was amnesty'd but at 4M a season he's a great value. He'll do well as a stretch 4 next to Dwight. Shannon we all know.. Had his ups & downs with us but we need an affordable SG to step in while Kobe is hurt & split time with Meeks. JO looked pretty good when motivated this season & gives us a backup C for 15 minutes a game with Pau leaving. He's a headcase but we have a good track record with those type of guys. I think this deal gives us exactly what we need to contend next season. Maybe a minor deal & a couple FA signings away from contending. I want to see MWP do what he talked about & opt out to re-sign for cheap, he's a warrior & has a good bond with Kobe.
Adding Scola & getting Hill back brings up another interesting decision. If teams are going to overpay for Earl Clark, do we S&T him for a piece we could use? Unless we get offered a really good piece I'd like to bring Earl back & I think we can find minutes for all of our fowards. Dudley can play SG, Shannon can play PG. Hill can play C. Clark can play SF. This roster gives us so much depth & flexibility. We'd still potentially have the mini MLE to use along with a MLE sized injury exception if Kobe is out for the season. Am I crazy for thinking that team can win a title? Dragic isn't one of those guys that will score 10 PPG once he plays with other stars, I think he'd remain effective next to 24 & D12. Scola/Dragic/Dudley should provide great spacing with the starters & allow Dwight & Kobe to get theirs easily. Beasley & Shannon can both light it up off the bench, then you have Clark/Blake/Meeks/MWP/Hill/Jamison?/JO who can all be solid role players. I'd put this team against the HEAT in a 7 game series right now if 24 is healthy.
Excuse the length, reality of failure setting in.