PLANET LOVETRON, NBA UNIVERSE -- Woe to those NBA fans who own an authentic or replica jersey or T-shirt of one of the following players:
Gerald Wallace, Dante Cunningham, Joel Przybilla, Aaron Brooks, Goran Dragic, Nazr Mohammed, D.J. White, Morris Peterson, Shane Battier, Hasheem Thabeet, Semih Erden, Luke Harangody, Kendrick Perkins, Nate Robinson, Jeff Green, Nenad Krstic, Baron Davis, Marquis Daniels, Jamario Moon and Mo Williams.
Those men, including draft picks and canvas sacks of cash were traded in copious amounts at one of the most active NBA trade deadlines in memory. Fans, meanwhile, will need to find cash to buy new merchandise or risk being ridiculed for being ironic in wearing an out-of-date jersey.
One day after the Utah Jazz and New Jersey Nets left jaws agape when the Jazz sent All-Star point guard Deron Williams to the Nets for point guard Devin Harris, rookie forward Derrick Favors, two first round picks and dough, the Celtics stunned many when they sent starting center Perkins and bench energizer Robinson to Oklahoma City for forward Green and center Kristic.
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Perkins, who tore two ligaments in his right knee in Game 6 of the 2010 Finals, had played in 12 games for the Celtics since his return from surgery. He injured his left knee on Feb. 22 and was scheduled to sit out the final three games of the Celtics' current road trip. What's shocking, from a basketball standpoint, about Perkins being dealt was he played great defense on bigger, more athletic centers. Although on the small side at 6-foot-10 for a pivot, he used his 280-pound bulk and quick feet to frustrate Magic All-Star center Dwight Howard and the Lakers' Andrew Bynum.
In exchange for Perkins, whose free agent status at the end of the season may have been one of the reasons the Celtics decided to move him before losing him for nothing, and Robinson, who averaged 7.1 points in 17.9 minutes off the bench, the Celtics will get Green, whose draft rights the Celtics traded to acquire Ray Allen in 2007, the Thunder's third-leading scorer at 15.2 points per game and Kristic, OKC's starting center, who only grabs 4.4 boards per game.
With Perkins, the Thunder now have the muscle down low to challenge the Lakers, the Spurs and the Mavs in the Western Conference. And Perkins will have Nazr Mohammed, acquired from the Bobcats for D.J. White and Morris Peterson, backing him up.
Celtics GM Danny Ainge didn't stop with the Perkins deal. He was busy sending backup center Semih Erden and rookie forward Harangody to Cleveland for a 2013 second-round pick. Ainge also reportedly dealt Marquis Daniels to the Kings for cash.
In Charlotte, Michael Jordan and Co. were busy. In addition to the Mohammed deal, they helped the Trail Blazers with their small forward woes by sending Gerald Wallace to Portland for center Joel Przybilla, forward Dante Cunningham and two future first round picks, which make it quite a nice haul for the Bobcats.
In Houston, Rockets GM Daryl Morey seemed to throw his team into rebuilding mode when he sent Shane Battier to Memphis for Hasheem Thabeet and a future first-round pick. Starting point guard Aaron Brooks also rode a rocket out of town as he was sent to the Suns for point guard Goran Dragic. Brooks will backup two-time MVP Steve Nash. Add to this Yao Ming, the Rockets' perennially injured center, will be a free agent this summer and the Rockets have the look of a team with their eyes on the future.
Reported yesterday and officially completed today, the Cavs acquired point guard Baron Davis and the Clippers' unprotected first-round pick in 2011 for point guard Mo Williams and forward Jamario Moon. The Cavs were willing to take on the $28.7M Davis is owed during the next two seasons in order to get what could be another lottery pick in addition to the one they will have.