The ESPN NBA Trade Machine doesn’t take basketball realism into account when calculating whether a deal is actually feasible; finances are what matter. The prospect of LeBron James taking his talents to Sacramento—for any reason other than to drop 50 on the Sacramento Kings—would be thrilling for fans in that market.
But it’s not going to happen.
Imagining LeBron in purple is just as outlandish as sending a young stud who’s still on his rookie deal— say, Kyrie Irving—to a team that would love to add him to the roster, but doesn’t have the trade chips to deal for the face of a franchise.
No matter how laughably imbalanced a deal may be, there’s only one rule when it comes to the Trade Machine: Make sure the numbers match. The following can be a friendly warning that, while it may be acceptable within the fiscal structure of the NBA to strike certain deals, there are ways to go overboard with hypothetical situations.
Making deals work on paper doesn’t necessarily make us future NBA GMs.