David Richard-USA TODAY Sports
Washington Wizards Receive: PG Andre Miller (two years*, $9.6 million)
Denver Nuggets Receive: PF Jan Vesely (one year, $3.3 million)
Philadelphia 76ers Receive: PG Eric Maynor (two years, $4.1 million) and two second-round picks (one from Washington in 2015, the other from Denver in 2016)
*Miller is partially guaranteed $2 million next year.
Key Stat: Andre Miller's 13.7 PER this season is a career low but is still drastically higher than Eric Maynor's PER of 6.1 this season.
Why Washington Did It
With John Wall off the court this season, the Wizards have been 10.8 points worse per 100 possessions, per Basketball-Reference.com. That's a staggering number, and so it would make sense that Washington would look to shore up the backup point guard position in advance of a playoff run since Eric Maynor and Garrett Temple had proved incapable during plenty of opportunities.
Maynor in particular has been especially bad this year, as evidenced by his true shooting percentage of 35.5 percent. With that in mind, upgrading behind Wall would be possible by bringing in just about anyone, and that includes 37-year-old point guard Andre Miller.
Even if he is declining quickly, his distributing ability and post scoring will be welcome additions to a second unit that's largely lacked both of those things. This is a continuation of Washington's "all-in" approach for this year, but the risk is minimal.
If Miller doesn't work out, the Wizards can move on next year, as his deal is only partially guaranteed for $2 million of the $4.6 million owed.
So long as his sometimes sour attitude doesn't bring down the locker room, this should be a definite upgrade for the small price of a second-round pick.
Why Denver Did It
This was nothing more than pest removal. Miller had become a problem in the locker room, and his clashes with rookie head coach Brian Shaw were probably no longer tolerable.
It's not like the Nuggets will miss his production anyway. He hadn't played since being suspended in early January, even with point guards Ty Lawson and Nate Robinson both going down to injury. This wasn't a situation that could be fixed, and so Denver opted to move on.
It's a bit harder to understand why Denver would have to sacrifice a second-round pick to trade the best player in the deal, though. While there's value in getting Miller's partially guaranteed $2 million for next year off the books by acquiring Vesely's expiring deal, it doesn't seem like it should cost a draft pick as well.
That being said, the Nuggets were operating with zero leverage. To get a former lottery pick who can actually provide minutes in the short term in Vesely for a player who was providing nothing is a minor victory, and given Denver's cap situation next year, that $2 million saved should help the team stave off the luxury tax.
This wasn't good value for Miller by any means, but at least he's someone else's problem now.
Why Philadelphia Did It
Since the 76ers will likely owe the Miami Heat their 2015 and 2016 second-round picks (so long as Philadelphia doesn't finish outside of the lottery next year), this trade was about making sure there are picks to convey.
Now the 76ers have the flexibility to move around a little bit more if they ever decide to stop hoarding second-round picks.
The cost to acquire those two choices was minimal. Maynor has a player option worth $2.1 million that you'd figure he would accept, but stranger things have happened. Perhaps there's a more lucrative, long-term deal waiting for him overseas, but that seems doubtful.
Even if Philadelphia does end up paying him, $2.1 million is a discounted price for two second-round choices, especially when you remember that it's actually Maynor's salary number subtracted by the league minimum, which should make the final price closer to $1.3 million.
That's a steal of a deal.
Maynor likely won't see much time this year or next, but that hardly matters for a team that will likely have no free-agency desires or be anywhere close to the cap line. As is usually the case, the facilitator of this three-way deal got the best end of it.