Tuesday, November 4, 2008

A.I. for Mr. Big Shot = Push

While I was out with a throat yesterday, there were a few big moves in the sports world that went down.

In college football, Phillip Fulmer was forced to take $6 million over four years to no longer coach Tennessee.

However, more important to me was the NBA trade where the Nuggets sent A.I. the Pistons for Chauncey Billups, Antonio McDyess (who will be bought out and re-sign with Detroit, allegedly) and some random dude (Cheik Samb).

There is a lot of speculation that Detroit did this move to shake things up, clear the way for Stuckey to start next year, and clear cap space to make a run at LeBron/Bosh/D. Wade in 2 years. Much of this is fueled by A.I.’s expiring contract.

He doesn’t seem like a good fit for this team on paper, but their max seemed to be another Eastern Conference Finals loss anyway. Perhaps Allen’s personality or the sheer volume of Dumars trading away a team leader could shake things up and give this team a spark.

If it works, they can possibly resign him or even try to get him to sign a 1-year extension. If it doesn’t work, you let him walk. Either way, you avoid pissing your fans off by rebuilding.

As for Denver, this trade looked a lot better before I learned they weren’t keeping Antonio McDyess. He would’ve helped provide them some much needed front court depth. Adding Billups, however, will solidify their point guard position and getting rid of A.I. will allow J.R. Smith to start.

Billups seems like a much better fit for Denver than A.I., although he has lost a step since he was the 2004 Finals MVP.

I think the final verdict on this trade is a draw. Even with Billups, Denver is a 6-8 seed in the West at best and A.I. doesn’t make Detroit any better than it already is, and his style of play could actually hinder the team’s chemistry.

As always, I’m interested to see what happens.

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