In the December 29th Edition of Sports Illustrated, Ian Thomsen wrote an interesting article about five trades that NBA teams should make before the February deadline. Number five on that list included one of our boys, and our team. Ian suggests the Nuggets should go after Thunder forward, and former #1 overall pick, Joe "Automatic" Smith, to bolster their bench for the playoffs. Included in the deal for the Thunder would be guard Chucky Atkins as well as the Nuggets first round draft pick in June, which would give the Thunder 3 first round picks, and also save the team 1.6 Million in salary this season. Click read more to hear our thoughts on this proposed SI Trade.
As far as the Smith V Atkins part of the deal, there is no question that the Nuggets get the better end of that deal, but looking at the current state of the team, it might not be a bad idea to shed some salary and add another first round pick in next years draft. That could really allow the Thunder some more options come draft time. They could use their two later first round pick to try and trade up to get another early pick to go along with their sure 1st overall pick (we hope, stupid lottery). Another option would be to use one of the three first round picks to pull off a trade for a player of need.
Overall, I wouldn't actually expect to see this deal happen, but you never know, Smith has been rumored to be available for trade along with Watson, and Wilcox, and the Nuggets could definitely use a big man off of the bench. I guess we've grown a little attached to Joe Automatic this season and just don't like to see him go, but we also knew when we acquired him that it would be a short lived stay with the team.
Its definitely going to be interesting to see what Presti does with the roster before the February trading deadline.