Kings Trade Webber to 76ers for Kenny Thomas, Spare Tire
The dejected C-Webb
News of the following trade broke late Wednesday night:
Apparently, the Kings felt it necessary to undo the windfall that was the acquisition of Cuttino Mobley (and Michael Bradley).
In effect, now, the Kings have traded Doug Christie and Chris Webber for Cuttino Mobley, Brian Skinner, Corliss Williamson. and Kenny Thomas. Seems like kind of a mish-mash, doesn't it? Surely there must be some design here...
THEY SET ME UP
Obviously, the deal is financially motivated. Webber had three years left on a contract that was paying him over $18 MILLION per year, on average. The Petries of Sacramento were either stupid enough or desperate enough to sign Webber to a 7 year, $127 million deal... in 2001. Those were the salad days for Webber, as he was putting up 25 points a game on 50% shooting, with 10 boards and close to 5 assists to go along with 1.5 steals and 1.5 blocks.
But but but... Webber played only 70 games in 2000, and 54 in 2001. The handwriting was on the wall that Webber had already begun his decline phase. Well here he is, halfway into this contract, performing pretty well on one knee, and looking like an absolutely awful bet to keep playing anywhere near this well (if at all) by the final two years of this contract.
Still, I don't see how this improves the Kings in the short-term, or in the long term. I'd like to know more about the contracts of the guys acquired--hopefully they expire soon--because none of the new acquisitions is a particularly good match in Sacramento. Yes, Williamson has been here before, and been successful... as a backup to Webber. Let's see how he does now, older, as a backup to Kenny Thomas.
Chris Webber is getting disrespected here. It has to sting a little bit for a man who ressurected the franchise in Sacramento. He's getting traded for absolute trash. If Chris Webber can maintain a similar level of production and reasonable health over the remainder of his contract, I say he's a lock for the Hall of Fame. That's like, really, really good.
Neither Kenny Thomas, nor Corliss Williamson, nor Brian Skinner (especially not Brian Skinner) is fit to sniff Webber's jock. And yet there he is, getting traded for them. Take the talented, young Matt Barnes and Michael Bradley also, please, so that you my take our All Star for your table scraps.
THE NEW LOOK KINGS
Bottom line: The Kings didn't get younger; they didn't get better; they didn't get more athletic; they didn't get more versatile. They went and acquired two lifetime sixth men and spot starters, and another guy who probably doesn't deserve a spot in the Association anymore. I hope for their sake that they are saving a whole, whole bunch of money, and that the contracts of their new acquisitions expire soon. These are the guys that were and have been instrumental in making Philadelphia suck!
Say hello to your Sacramento Kings:
PF Kenny Thomas/Corliss Williamson
C Brad Miller
What can I say? I don't like the move. This seriously hurts the Kings' chances of competing deep into the playoffs this year. What could make this sting even worse down the road, even if both of Webber's knees explode tomorrow, is that both Bradley and Barnes are talented, and could emerge as the second and third most valuable players involved in this deal, given time to grow and time to play.
THE NEW LOOK SIXERS
Say hello to your Philadelphia 76ers
PG Allen Iverson
SG Andre Iguodala
SF Kyle Korver
PF Chris Webber
C Sam Dalembert/Marc Jackson
Now that, ladies and gentlemen, is a well-constructed lineup, that now has oustanding rebounding, defense, and scoring in the post to go along with a backcourt that features great perimeter defense and the ability to either hit the sweet, sweet 3 (Korver) or slash to the lane and score or dish (the Two AIs).
It will be interesting to see the extent to which Philadelphia's offense gets diverted to the post.
For Webber to get his dimes, he needs to have the ball in his hands standing near the top of the key, and it's hard to see Iverson giving up that responsiblity (he should). On the other hand, if they do let Webber do his thang, he has some great targets to find standing on the wing or on devastating backdoor cuts (Iguodala and Iverson: they're fast).
It'll also be interesting to see how Webber's scoring is affected. It could go up, because Philly does not have anywhere near the offensive weaponry that Sacramento did. Korver's a good scorer, but probably not a good #2 scorer. Iverson likes his shots, to be sure, but I think Webber will continue to get his at a clip similar to what he's been doing.
This trade could be good, fantasy wise, for every player in the Philly starting lineup. If C-Webb's knee holds up, he'll provide great stability for this playoff-hungry team.
Perhaps the biggest fantasy benefactor of the trade is Sacramento's Brad Miller. When Webber has been on the shelf this year, he's been spectacular. He doesn't turn the ball over and he drops the dimes... a lot. Webber was taking his touches and his dimes. I don't think 16 10 5 1.5 1.5 is outlandish to expect from Miller for the remainder of the season. He may even improve on that. He's quite good. His minutes will be up and his role will be increased.
This is the very definition of a blockbuster trade. We'll have to wait a little bit before we can really analyze the fallout.