The NBA's trade deadline is tomorrow and we've heard hundreds of rumors of different players going to different teams. So much speculation about who gets who, where the player wants to go, if a team is trying to dump salary or make a run at a playoff push. Every hour of the day we have a new rumor conjured up by either some fact or fiction. Why do we think moving these players are such good moves for teams though? If you're already settled in as one of the best teams then why go out and grab someone?
Can you name the last NBA championship team that had a trade deadline trade that helped them win the championship? Unlike baseball and hockey, which this scenario happens frequently, the NBA really hasn't been a league where adding a key player creates a path to the ring. The last time a significant deadline trade happened that led to the championship was in 2004 when the Detroit Pistons traded for Rasheed Wallace and Mike James. Mike James was deadly in the playoffs!!
Why is it so much easier in the MLB and NHL to make deadline trades that propel your team? The answer is chemistry. Chemistry is a factor in all sports, but it's the key in basketball. In baseball everyone is not touching the ball every play so chemistry isn't as much of a factor. In hockey, everyone will touch the puck while on the ice, but you have a specific line you play with so you can learn to gel with your line much easier. Basketball on the other hand, you have many different lineups that you have to learn to play with. Sometimes you have a tall lineup, short lineup, more guards, more forwards. There are so many different variables that adding that key player could almost be a detriment this late in the season.
I actually wanted to write this column for the sole purpose of one reason. I have a funny story that hopefully I can relate to sports, if not, you got a laugh out of it. The story is about one of my roommates in college. College wasn't that long ago for me; only three years. I went to Penn State and had an amazing time. During my junior and senior years I lived in a two floor, four bedroom townhouse with five other guys. You shouldn't get excited unless you're female or a male figure skater. Anyways, we had great times there, all of us meshed together perfectly. We were all friends since freshman year and it made it much easier to jump into a place where six gents had to live with each other. I'm sure if one person left and we had to add someone later on it just wouldn't be the same.
One roommate of mine, who is now a teacher in Philadelphia, was the type of person where no matter what he did or how hard he tried to make everything work out smoothly, it just wouldn't. Since he's a teacher I'll protect his identity here and call him, hmmm... John Heisey. Heisey's a great guy, well maybe not a great guy, but at least a good guy. He is a great teacher though. Heisey was a jinx, he was messy, he wore extremely dirty Homer Simpson slippers, but Heisey was a perfect fit for our abode. Maybe he wouldn't fit everywhere he went, but he fit with our place; we all fit with our place.
I was talking to another one of my fellow roommates yesterday and happened to hear an extremely hilarious story that involved Heisey. If you knew him, you would know it was true and it wouldn't surprise you at all. I guess Heisey lives in Philadelphia with a roommate or two, I'm not sure, I don't really care to talk to him that often. One of his roommates had to go out of town for the weekend. She asked him to watch over her dog that she loved oh so dearly during the weekend while she was gone. John being the kind guy that he is immediately said yes. He takes care of kids for a living, he has a pet snake, of course he could take care of a dog. She left and the weekend rolled around. Yohn invited over some of his friends to have a few cocktails before they went out for the evening. They had a few drinks and moved the party to the outdoors. They were all outside just having a gay old time, drinking beer, playing fetch with the dog, and everything was going great. The night got later and they decided to leave to go out for the night. They went to a few bars, got much more inebriated, and finally called it a night around 2am. The next day Heisey returned home to an empty apartment. Yes, Heisey lost her dog! How does someone lose a dog? Dogs escape, run away, hide for awhile, but lose a dog?
It gets even better. I guess Heisey was a wreck; who wouldn't be? Next, he did what every rational person would do to help try and console a person who just lost their precious pet. He went out and bought her another dog. I'm not sure if the dog looked like the same dog or was the same type of breed. Knowing him he probably just found a dog with the same name and called it a day. Would anyone really be satisfied with a replacement dog? This is straight out of a scene from Meet the Parents.
When she came back from the weekend, ready to see her pet, he finally broke the news to her. She was heartbroken, in tears, and mourning all day. He then thought the best move would be to say to her, and I quote from what I heard he said,
"I Understand If You Want Me To Move Out"
That's my old college roommate. The one I know and had so many great times with over my college days. Do I expect anything less of him? Nope. This is dedicated to him and hopefully his roommate's dog reemerges. At least if it does it will have another dog to play with now.
The moral of the story and to come back to the sports aspect is that some players work in certain situations. For the six of us in K2, Heisey worked. I guess for his new situation he just doesn't have the correct fit. The same could go with any of these NBA players who will get traded today and tomorrow. Myself and the rest of my old roommates know Heisey enough to not put him in a situation where he is taking care of anything. Unfortunately for his new roommate, she didn't know him well enough.
I want the Cavs to trade for Amare, but does anyone really know if it will work? I just hope if they pull the move the chemistry works out, because if it ends up backfiring and the Cavs lose the new addition of Amare (Heisey) and the most beloved person on the team (the dog) then the whole entire household will be in a somber mood (Cleveland).
Who wants their kids taught by Mr. Heisey???