NBA Trade Speculation: Will Orlando Magic Move Jameer Nelson?

Collin BerglundCorrespondent IIIMay 22, 2011

NBA Trade Speculation: Will Orlando Magic Move Jameer Nelson?

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    ORLANDO, FL - APRIL 19:  Jameer Nelson #14 of the Orlando Magic shoots against the Atlanta Hawks during Game Two of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals of the 2011 NBA Playoffs on April 19, 2011 at the Amway Arena in Orlando, Florida.  NOTE TO USER: User
    J. Meric/Getty Images

    The Orlando Magic cannot afford to trade Jameer Nelson.  However, as in any trade discussion, there are exceptions.  For instance, if the Hornets are willing to deal Chris Paul, I believe Nelson would become available.

    Still, Nelson averaged 13 points and six assists per game for the Magic this season and continued his solid play through the postseason.  He developed chemistry with Howard this season and became another threat for the Magic.  

    Jameer Nelson gives the team consistency at the point guard position—one of the most important positions on the court.

Leadership

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    ATLANTA, GA - APRIL 28:  Jason Richardson #23 and Jameer Nelson #14 of the Orlando Magic against the Atlanta Hawks during Game Six of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals in the 2011 NBA Playoffs at Philips Arena on April 28, 2011 in Atlanta, Georgia.  NO
    Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

    While Dwight Howard is the Magic's most talented player, Nelson is the team's heart, soul and leader.  Last March, George Diaz of the Orlando Sentinel wrote that Nelson was more important to the team than pure numbers.

Fair Value

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    ATLANTA, GA - APRIL 22:  Kirk Hinrich #6 of the Atlanta Hawks against Jameer Nelson #14 of the Orlando Magic during Game Three of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals in the 2011 NBA Playoffs at Philips Arena on April 22, 2011 in Atlanta, Georgia.  NOTE T
    Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

    Jameer Nelson is not an NBA superstar.  Although I'm sure the Orlando Magic would like nothing more than to pair Dwight Howard with another of the NBA's main men, Nelson cannot net a star on his own.

    Trading Nelson would only work as part of a major package—containing more major pieces—ensuring Howard and the new star would have few players left surrounding them.

    Nelson's value to the Magic is enormous and has allowed them to advance in the postseason for the last few seasons.  Another star is needed, but keeping Nelson should be a priority.

Creating His Shot

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    ATLANTA, GA - APRIL 22:  Jameer Nelson #14 of the Orlando Magic draws a foul from Marvin Williams #24 of the Atlanta Hawks during Game Three of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals in the 2011 NBA Playoffs at Philips Arena on April 22, 2011 in Atlanta, Ge
    Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

    Look at the Magic roster.  It contains a number of interchangeable shooters, Dwight Howard and Jameer Nelson.

    Nelson is the one perimeter player on the team that can create his own shot—and is unafraid of making moves toward the basket, unlike many Magic players.

Arenas Can't Handle the Starting Job

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    ORLANDO, FL - FEBRUARY 03: (L-R) Guard Gilbert Arenas #1, Guard Jameer Nelson #14, Center Dwight Howard #12 and Forward Earl Clark #3 of the Orlando Magic line against the Miami Heat at Amway Arena on February 3, 2011 in Orlando, Florida. NOTE TO USER: Us
    Marc Serota/Getty Images

    Although the Magic acquired a talented point guard at midseason, Gilbert Arenas is no longer the player he once was.  

    Arenas' body has broken down after years of disobeying doctors' rehab directions.  Even when he was healthy, he did not help his teams win games.  He was a selfish point guard who made a lot of shots, but too often turned the rest of the team into spectators.

    Arenas would not be able to replicate Nelson's success in the same role.

Dwight Howard's Friend

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    BOSTON - MAY 24:  (L-R) Jameer Nelson #14 and Dwight Howard #12 of the Orlando Magic walk towards the bench against the Boston Celtics in Game Four of the Eastern Conference Finals during the 2010 NBA Playoffs at TD Banknorth Garden on May 24, 2010 in Bos
    Jim Rogash/Getty Images

    The NBA is a league that places emphasis on keeping stars happy.  After the Boston Celtics traded Kendrick Perkins at midseason, Rajon Rondo began to play poorly.  Some thought this had to do with his friend's departure.

    Nelson and Howard enjoy a close relationship, according to the Orlando Sentinel.  While Howard might not be upset if the Magic obtain a star, chemistry is a fickle science.  There is no telling how Howard would react to playing with another player.