The current NBA has big men at a premium, so once you get your hands on one, you should do all you can to retain him. That is exactly what Chris Kaman is.
A guy that can score with either hand on the low block, has a decent jumper for a big man and plays good defense. Kaman's contract has three years and $44 million left on his deal, not quite a bargain, but also not overpaying.
So, why would the Clippers want to deal a relatively young center? Simply for the fact that they have an overload up front and need to open up playing time for young players like Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan.
Marvin Williams + Rights to BJ Mullens
The Hawks get themselves the center they need to allow Al Horford to go back to the power forward position.
Clippers get a small forward to compete with Thornton for playing time, hopefully bringing the both out of each of them, while adding another project big.
Boris Diaw + No. 40
The Bobcats reportedly had offered Jason Richardson to the Clippers for Kaman before dealing him to the Phoenix Suns for Boris Diaw and Raja Bell. Kaman would be a perfect fit next to the defensive minded Emeka Okafor by providing the post offense the Bobcats need.
While, on the flipside, Diaw is the perfect fit for Mike Dunleavy. A small forward who can handle the ball and make passes will do wonders in the half-court set run by Dunleavy.
Tim Thomas + John Salmons
Bulls get the perfect center and post presence they need to make the next step.
Clippers get a solid small forward for Dunleavy, along with a legit three point threat in Thomas, who did well in L.A. already. He can be swapped with Jerome James if either side wants.
This is all, of course, with the mindset that the Mavericks will retain Jason Kidd. Kaman and Dirk, the face of the Mavericks franchise, played together for Germany during the Olympics, and would make a nice high-low post combination in the NBA.
Losing Terry's instant offense hurts, but when you can trade small for big, without downgrading in talent, you have to do it, namely when Eric Dampier is your starting center.
For the Clippers, they get the perfect guard to come off the bench behind both Eric Gordon and Baron Davis. Terry also gives Dunleavy another option at point guard off the bench, where they already got the one-man press in Mike Taylor, and a pass-first Mardy Collins.
Kwame Brown + Arron Afflalo
Detroit brings Kaman back home to Michigan, who will fill the void left by Rasheed Wallace, who by all indications wil not be resigning in Detroit.
Clippers get Kwame Brown's expiring contract, who is still a decent defender, and bring Afflalo back to L.A.
Ryan Gomes + Brian Cardinal + No. 18 draft pick
The Wolves acquire themselves the center they need to complete their front court rotation of the future alongside Al Jefferson and Kevin Love.
Clippers will buy-out or waive Cardinal right away, as he has an expiring contract and is not needed. Or perhaps Dunleavy might keep him and use him as trade bait. Either way, the Clippers get a tweener who can play both forward positions along with a pick in the late teens, like Dunleavy reportedly wants.
Samuel Dalembert + Willie Green + Conditional Future First Rounder for Chris Kaman + Ricky Davis
76ers re-unite the front court of Elton Brand and Chris Kaman, which worked well in Los Angeles, while ridding themselves of Dalembert, who they have wanted to for a while according to numerous reports.
I'm not a major fan of this one for the Clippers, but Dalembert is a defensive minded center who can help Camby teach DeAndre how to be a good to great shot blocker, and will offset the deficiencies of Randolph, and possibly Griffin. Green is also a huge upgrade over Davis and the pick could be used in many ways, and gives the Clippers two future picks on top of their own selections.
Andrei Kirilenko + No. 20 draft pick + Knicks 2010 pick for Chris Kaman + Ricky Davis + Al Thornton
Jazz add the perfect match with Okur on the offensive end, and could get value out of Boozer and Millsap in sign and trade deals, plus I could see Kaman working perfectly with Deron running the show.
Another trade I'd be hesitant to pull the trigger on, but ultimately, I can't see the Clippers passing this up. The Knicks pick could be a top one as it doesn't seem like they are getting any better, and the first this year also gives Dun the pick he wanted, which we can use to easily draft Thornton's replacement. Kirilenko is a solid match as well, and expires in 2011, along with Randolph, clearing $34 million off the cap immediately and allowing the Clippers to possibly make a push for Carmelo Anthony.