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Iguodala Trade Rumors

Well, it's been written so we're going to have to discuss it. Kate Fagan has a piece today that says the Sixers will look to trade Andre Iguodala this summer. She doesn't quote sources, even un-named, though she does talk about reading between the lines. Either way, she pulls a couple of names out of a hat so let's break it down.

First of all, if you read Fagan's piece, there's an error in there. She's asking what teams could possibly be willing to take on the remaining $56M on Iguodala's contract, when he only has 3 years/$44M left on his deal. The 2010-2011 season is over, all the paychecks have been mailed.

Anyway, we've really got three rumors, or conjectures, or just made up stuff to take a look at. Let's deal with Fagan's first:

  1. Iguodala for Rudy Gay - I've never been a fan of Rudy Gay, and his contract scares the hell out of me. Gay is owed $69M over the next four seasons, and Fagan's article is again incorrect when it says Iguodala will make $13.5M next season and Gay will make $13.6. Gay's salary will be $15,032,144 in 2011-2012. Gay made $13.6M in 2010-2011, as compared to Iguodala's $12.3M. On the court, I can see how Gay would fit better on the offensive end than Iguodala. He's a better volume scorer and just as efficient with his shots as Iguodala. If you believe Jrue can handle the responsibility of being the primary playmaker, which I do, then a guy like Gay would fit well at the three, especially if Turner can eventually step into the SG spot and provide some more playmaking. Gay would have to keep his three-point percentage up around 40%, where it was this season, and not fall back to his career average, which was in the 34% range prior to this season. That's a pretty big gamble, imo. On the defensive end, Gay's numbers were much improved this season, but he doesn't hold a candle to Iguodala. Basically, you'd have to hope that the offense works better with his skill set, and hope the drop in defense doesn't take away more than he adds on the offensive end. No matter how you slice it, there's no way in hell that Rudy Gay is worth $25M more than Andre Iguodala over the next four years. Memphis could probably use another playmaker on offense, I guess that would be their rationale.
  2. Iguodala for Chris Kaman - I'm not sure where people have gotten the idea that Chris Kaman is a good center, but he simply is not. He's had one decent season in his career where he wasn't a total drag on his team's offense, and that season came six years ago, when he was 23. Since then, he's basically been a slightly better version of Spencer Hawes on the offensive end. On defense, he's better than Hawes, but far from enough of a difference-maker to compensate for the pitiful offense. Trading Iguodala for Kaman doesn't fill the hole at center, it just gives you 48 minutes of Spencer Hawes-level production at the five, which is not a good thing. If they trade Iguodala for Kaman with no picks involved, this is a pure salary cap move, plain and simple. Kaman's contract expires in June 2012, so the trade would save the Sixers $31.5M over three years. It would not improve their cap situation this coming summer. They'd basically be severely downgrading their talent to get out of Iguodala's contract two years earlier. This is the type of deal that would drive me crazy. The Clippers would kiss Stefanski and Thorn on the lips if they offered them this deal.
  3. Iguodala to the Clippers for a pick or two, cap space, Randy Foye and Ryan Gomes - To me, this is the only deal of the three that makes any kind of sense. The pick is Minnesota's unprotected #1 pick in 2012, which you have to assume will be a top five pick. Foye expires after this season, Gomes has one extra season at $4M. It wouldn't give the Sixers any kind of help on the floor, but it would give them several assets and immediate cap relief. If they were to withdraw their qualifying offer for Hawes, they'd be down to around $54M, which would put them below the cap (if the cap remains at last year's level under the new CBA). They could cut that number to $50M if they also cut ties with Thad. They'd also have the expiring contracts of Foye and Nocioni (a combined $10.9M), plus that Minnesota #1 in 2012. This is also a deal that could be made prior to the draft and prior to the impending lockout, since all players involved are under contract. If the Clippers are serious about putting a winner on the floor, this deal is a no-brainer for them. Iguodala is a perfect compliment to the young pieces they've assembled. They'd also be left with Kaman's expiring contract to use, unless getting Iguodala would preclude them from re-signing DeAndre Jordan, which would be a huge mistake. I guess my hope would be that the Sixers wouldn't wait a year to put these newfound assets and cap flexibility to use. I'd like to see them put together a package to move up in the draft and grab Bismack.

Anyway, I don't really think any of these scenarios is likely to happen, but there's my two cents. Fire away in the comments.