Corey Maggette has played well lately, and now would be the perfect time to trade him.
I'm not a Maggette hater; I'm just a realistic Warriors fan who accepts that the Warriors are more than likely out of the playoffs and into the lottery.
And if we're going into the lottery, I'd rather have my young wings: Morrow, Belinelli, and Azubuike getting the minutes and building a rapport with the team core of Biedrins, Turiaf, Monta, Jackson, and Randolph.
I'd also like to note that I am more than willing to package Brandan Wright along with Corey Maggette. I've had my doubts with Wright and regardless of how he progresses offensively, he has never proven to be an average rebounder at the NBA or even college level where averaged only 6.2 rebounds in his only season at UNC.
So without further adieu, here are some possible destinations for Corey Maggette. Important to note that possible teams that would be interested in him are playoff contending/title contending teams and likely destinations are the Eastern Conference and absolute must in the return for the Warriors are expiring contracts or two-year contracts.
These were a few of my criteria, although the last couple scenarios don't follow the rules.
1. Maggette to the Cavs
Delonte West just broke his wrist. Seriously, this trade could DEFINITELY happen. Consider that the second leading scorer on the team is Mo Williams at a meager 16 points a game.
In addition, you can actually take LeBron out of the game and give him a bit of rest and not worry too much about scoring with Corey picking up the slack. Possible trades are Maggette for Eric Snow and a first-round pick or second-round pick.
2. Maggette to the Magic for Hedo Turkoglu
Pietrus is often injured and is currently out. Hedo is good, but Maggette is a better defender, rebounder, slasher, and gets to the line more than Hedo...all things that Stan Van Gundy values.
Hedo is a better shooter, but the Magic are loaded with shooters; Nelson, Lewis, Pietrus, Lee, Bogans and Redick. Maggette may fit much better on this team than Hedo with his defense and rebounding.
3. Maggette to Toronto
It may be too late to trade with Toronto, as the Raps may be resigned to try and rebuild via the draft. Maggette is that high-scoring wing they so desperately need, but is he that much of an upgrade over Anthony Parker?
4. Three-team trade involving Eddy Curry, Maggette, and Nocioni
How about Curry back to his hometown Bulls, Maggette to the Knicks, and the expiring contract of Gooden to the Dubs? Okay a stretch. But Nocioni would work.
It's more of a lateral move for all in terms of contracts as all are under contract until at least 2011. But the Knicks get better as they get yet another Warrior 20-point scorer, and get rid of a bench warmer, and the Bulls get rid of a duplicate player who plays the same position as Deng and Tyrus Thomas and get a local big man.
In fact, I think the Knicks have to give up at the very least a second-round pick, as this trade rids them of a fat slob and the Warriors are getting a lesser player in Andres Nocioni.
However, I like Nocioni; he's tougher and more rugged than Maggette and a better three-point shooter. Also, he'll play PF/SF for Nellie and do so with gusto.
Do I like Nocioni more than Maggette? Yes, because in addition to the above, he'll be content playing fewer minutes, as he averaged fewer minutes than Maggette throughout his career.
5. Maggette to the Nets for Bobby Simmons
Okay, this would contradict everything the Nets are trying to do in terms of clearing cap space for 2010 and developing young players. But they are the eighth seed in the East, and after Harris and Carter, their third-leading scorer is Brook Lopez at a meager 11 points a game.
This trade may make them a solid fourth seed...WAIT, I forgot Rod Thorn is their GM and actually has a plan and knows what he's doing as opposed to our pseudo-GM Robert Rowell.
6. Maggette to the Thunder
This is a much more unlikely scenario, as the Thunder is the worst team in the league and rebuilding. But a similar type of trade occurred when we traded J-Rich to then and still talent deprived Bobcats.
We could trade Maggette to the Thunder for a late first-rounder or Maggette and Brandan Wright to the Thunder for a 2009 first round pick from Spurs or Nugs (earlier pick) and a 2010 or 2011 Thunder first round pick, top 10 protected.
The last few years, the Thunder have stockpiled picks by first absorbing Kurt Thomas' contract from the Suns and then trading Kurt Thomas to the Spurs, netting them a total of three first-round picks.
However, Corey Maggette is whole different animal than Kurt Thomas. Corey is a 20-point scorer with a lot more left in the tank than Kurt Thomas had last year.
The Thunder are so young, and in need of:
A.) Veteran leadership
B.) Another 20-point scorer
C.) A wing player
Corey fits the bill on A-C while Brandan fits D. Wright is having a pretty good year in limited minutes at the PF spot. Wright would make a pretty good duo with Nick Collison, and Brandan is only 21-years-old and still improving.
Corey adds the veteran sooner, rather than waiting during the offseason, and this still enables the Thunder to land a top six lotto pick. So in essence, the Thunder can have their cake and eat it, too.
They get a veteran high-scoring wing and one of Griffin, Thabeet, or Greg Monroe. Trading for Maggette for the last third of the 2008-09 season would better prepare them for the 2009-10 season.
In addition, why wait for the 2009 summer free agency? The free agent list is thin and old (http://www.hoopsworld.com/Story.asp?story_id=9608).
2010 free agents...no offense, but who wants to go to Oklahoma? Ben Gordon is the only other viable 2009 option, but there is no guarantee that Gordon signs with the Thunder this off-season. So the Thunder are gambling on a vet signing with them.
Maggette has a five-year $50 million contract. That's long, yes, but it's shorter than any free agent you'd sign in upcoming offseasons, and what I love is his attitude and consistent production.
Corey is the only big name 2008 free agent signing who has performed at the level that he is capable of. Brand and Baron have declined.
He averages close to 20, increased his rebounding, accepts coming off the bench, and dives on the floor without a second thought.
The only reason why he's expendable is that we have Monta coming back, and Belinelli and Morrow have proven to be solid and improving wing players.
With how well he's been playing and his acceptance of the sixth man role, now is the time to trade Corey Maggette.