As everyone has already heard, according to Marc Stein and Chad Ford of ESPN, the New Jersey Nets are set to make an offer of Brook Lopez and two first round picks to the Orlando Magic for Dwight Howard and Hedo Turkoglu.
GM of the Nets, Billy King, is insisting the rumor is not true, but we all know there has to be some truth to it.
Why wouldn’t there be?
If the Magic actually agree to this trade, it will go down as one of the worst trades in NBA history.
Dwight Howard is hands down the best center in the NBA.
He is a physical freak of nature who has averaged a double-double every year since his rookie season.
He has been an All-Star five times, on the All-NBA First Team four times and won Defensive player of the Year the past three seasons.
I feel this trade is absolutely terrible for the Magic. I doubt they will ever agree to this trade, and here are four reasons why.
I’m going to just come out and say it. Brook Lopez is not that good.
I know last season he averaged a career high 20 points per game, but his numbers declined in all of the other major categories for a big man.
It’s not hard for a seven-footer to score a bunch of points with Deron Williams forcing teams to double and triple team him every time he enters the paint because you know he’ll always make the right pass leading to an easy lay up or dunk.
Lopez is seven feet tall and can’t rebound. There is no reason a seven-footer who plays 35 minutes per game should only be grabbing six rebounds a game. That’s good for 68th in the NBA last season.
The only explanation for this is he is soft and gets pushed around by opposing teams centers too often.
Last season there were two guards, Landry Fields and Dwyane Wade, who grabbed more rebounds than Lopez did.
Lopez also put up career lows in blocks and field goal percentage last season.
You have to assume the two first round picks the Nets offered the Magic would both be unprotected picks. If there are any restrictions at all on the picks, then Magic should automatically not make the trade.
To be honest, I don’t even think the picks will be lottery picks if the Nets trade Howard to the Nets and allow him to team up with Deron Williams.
Dwight is easily the best center in the NBA and Deron is a top three PG in the NBA.
The combination of those two should be good enough to make the playoffs in the Eastern Conference in their first season, no matter who else is on the team.
If the Magic are going to make this trade, they should at least wait until the trade deadline gets closer so the Nets can play half the season without Dwight and have a much worse record than they would with him.
They also could hope the Nets get desperate to pull the trigger and add in additional picks.
I know Hedo’s contract is pretty large, but I don’t think the Magic are looking to completely rebuild when they trade Dwight.
For this reason, I don’t feel they care about shedding that much cap space and therefore want Hedo on their roster for their playoff push.
Just last season, the Magic traded to bring Hedo Turkoglu back after he signed a large deal with the Raptors the season before.
Another reason I feel the Magic aren’t looking to rebuild is because they traded for Gilbert Arenas last season as well. His contract is even worse than Hedo’s is.
I believe the Magic will be trying to trade Dwight for a couple of players that could come in and help make a title run right away.
If anything, I believe there’s a better chance of the Magic adding another bad contract than getting rid of one they already have.
Since two years ago, everyone has been comparing Dwight Howard’s situation to what Carmelo Anthony went through last year.
Melo used his leverage to the max and the Nuggets ended up complying with all of his demands.
First, he wanted to get traded before the deadline so he didn’t have to stay on the Nuggets the whole season.
Then, he wanted a sign-and-trade so he could get the max money and years on his new deal.
Finally, he wanted to come to the Knicks and team up with his good friend Amar’e Stoudamire.
The Nuggets were still able to use Melo’s requests to their advantage and used their leverage over the Knicks to get one hell of a package for Carmelo.
They were able to add three young stars, Danilo Gallinari, Wilson Chandler and Raymond Felton, who have all proven they have bright futures in the NBA.
That is way better than only getting Brook Lopez in return.
The Nuggets also got a rookie prospect in Timofey Mozgov, as well as a first round pick and two second round picks.
The Magic would be getting only two firsts in the Howard trade and as I said before, they probably won’t even be lottery picks.
The Nuggets also were able to shed salary cap by getting rid of the aging Chauncey Billups, so that is a wash with the Magic giving up Hedo’s large contract.
When you take all that into consideration, the Nuggets would be getting way more than the Magic would be receiving.
The Magic need to use the Melo trade as a basis for their Dwight Howard trade because they deserve just as much as the Nuggets got, if not more.