While the Los Angeles Clippers have surely had a solid summer, adding in veteran role players and retaining the starters from last year, their rival, the Los Angeles Lakers, have com through with two blockbusters: trading for Steve Nash and, most recently, Dwight Howard.
No doubt the Clippers have had a good summer. No doubt the Lakers have had a great one.
So, in a city where it seems like one team is always responding to the other, will the Clippers make a move in response to the Lakers trade for Howard?
While they are considered mostly devoid of assets that would help in a trade, the Clippers do have a few options should they look to upgrade either at small forward or center. Caron Butler (2 yeras/16 million) and DeAndre Jordan (3 years/33 million) are both movable when paired with Eric Bledsoe. Throw in a 2013 first round pick, maybe even the 2015, and, yeah, there might be some possibilities for the Clippers.
Andre Iguodala, who has been linked to the Clippers in trade scenarios (especially for Chris Kaman) for the as long as I can remember, got moved to Denver as part of the Howard trade. It's safe to say that he's out of the picture.
But there are other players who might still be options. Josh Smith's expiring contract could become available, but he's a strange player, either a SF who can't shoot or an undersized PF. I don't know how he fits with this Clippers team.
In Chicago, with Derrick Rose likely to be out for most of next season, the Bulls could be looking to cut some salary. Luol Deng and Joakim Noah are potential targets there, but that's a huge 'IF'.
There have also been rumors throughout the years that Indiana would like to trade Danny Granger and his huge deal. Would the Pacers take Butler, Bledsoe, and a first to save some money on Granger's deal? Remember that the Pacers don't have a point guard, so grooming Bledsoe is a good opportunity for Indiana.
Could the Raptors be looking to move Andrea Bargnani (and his huge contract) to clear playing time for Ed Davis and Jonas Valenciunas? That clogs the Clippers salary all up in the post for the next three years. I'll pass.
How good is Gortat in Phoenix? Certainly DeAndre Jordan fits into their long-term plans much better than Gortat, who is already 28.
And Utah has been rumored to be interested in trading big men Al Jefferson or Paul Millsap- but adding in Jordan doesn't help out their logjam unless a three-team trade is worked.
Then of course, you can stand pat, which is the most likely (and the most sensible) option. Don't let what the Lakers do control what you do. You worked all summer to sign Chauncey Billups, Jamal Crawford, Grant Hill, Ronny Turiaf, and Ryan Hollins. You extended Blake Griffin and traded for Lamar Odom. You stayed under the luxury tax while building one of the deepest rosters in the league. So why panic now?
So, what would you rather see?
A Clippers response or LAC standing pat?
And if they respond, what trade would you like to see?