FanPost

Best options for 7.3 M trade exception?

So after the Randolph for Richardson trade, we'll have exactly one year to use a 7.3 M Traded Player Exception (TPE) before it expires. Assuming that we don't want to take on any players with guaranteed contracts in 2010, below are some teams over the luxury tax (~$68M) that we might be able to deal with (salary figures from hoopshype):

(1) HORNETS ($77.6 M total):  Antonio Daniels (6.6M) + Julian Wright (2M) for TPE + Ricky Davis (2.5M). Daniels is useless now but Wright, although he regressed a bit this year, could provide us with a defensive stopper at SF.

(2) LAKERS ($90 M projected w/ Artest & Odom): Adam Morrison (5.3M) + Jordan Farmar (1.9 M) OR Shannon Brown (probably re-signs for 1-2 M) straight up for TPE. Not sure Lakers would do this deal-- but might be something to consider at mid-season if one of the two Lakers PGs falls out of the rotation, and if Taylor and Jones aren't playing particularly well.

(3) WIZARDS ($75.6 M total): Mike Miller (9.9 M) for TPE (only works if we're 2-3 M under salary cap).  I'm not convinced that Miller's going to get much playing time, given all of the WAS wing players (Butler / Foye / Stevenson / Young / Crittenton), so Miller might be available fairly early in the season. If we don't re-sign Novak, then Miller could be someone we really need. 

(4) JAZZ ($78 M projected w/ Millsap re-signed): Matt Harpring (6.5 M) + #1 draft pick straight up for TPE.  Harpring hardly plays any more, and I think Utah has the Knicks #1 in 2010, so they'd probably be willing to give up whichever of their two pick is  worse to save $13 M.  Also, I think Harpring could be kind of useful on the Clips.

(5) KNICKS (as much as $80M w/ combination of Lee / Robinson / Kidd / Hill): Chris Duhon (6.0 M) straight up for TPE (don't think Knicks will be giving up more #1 draft picks). If Baron doesn't rejuvenate or gets injured again, Duhon might be a decent one-year rental.

(6) NUGGETS (up to $75 M with Anderson/Jones/Kleiza): Stephen Hunter (3.7 M) and Renaldo Balkman (2.0 M) straight up for TPE.  Not really sure this is worth our while with Griffin but Balkman would be a pretty good backup PF.

[Actually, the Nugget I most covet is Kleiza-- I think it might be worth sacrificing some 2010 cap space to sign him to the MLE-- after all, if we really needed to, we could renounce Thornton in 2010 if Lebron or Wade came calling. As for 2009, I think Kleiza would be a better starting SF than Thornton.]

I guess if I had to pick the best way to use the TPE, it would be options (1) or (2) so that we wind up with Wright, Farmar, or Brown, each of whom I think could crack our top 8 rotation for several years to come. Mike Miller would be nice, too, though keeping him beyond next year would probably mean that we don't land a superstar in 2010.

Thoughts?

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