Here are some thoughts on the 4th annual NBA Draft roundup on some of the moves:
1) Rush Brothers Unite!
Brandon Rush got drafted by the Trail Blazers, then traded to the Indiana Pacers... where his brother, Kareem Rush, was playing! Apparently, Kareem still needs to sign a contract this offseason. I wonder if the Pacers want to reunite the Rush family, or if they just wanted a younger Rush brother. Of course, they could just go out and find oldest brother JaRon Rush, who was a stud at UCLA before declaring for the NBA draft... and not getting selected. Seriously though, Brandon Rush seems better than either of his brothers. We shall see.
2) Milwaukee Bucks Get a Steal
The Bucks were able to trade Bobby Simmons, who only has 2 years left, and the great unknown in Yi Jianlin to New Jersey in exchange for Richard Jefferson. Jefferson was a bit banged up last year, but it's an excellent trade for Milwaukee, and they really have absolutely no excuses for not making the playoffs this season.
The internet rumors are rampant with the theory that the Nets dumped Jefferson with the sole goal of clearing out even more room for LeBron James in 2010. Clearly, I can only hope that LeBron wants to stay in Cleveland, but it's funny that the Nets are going to essentially throw away this season and next for their chance at LeBron. Of course, you could also subscribe to the theory that the Nets believe that Yi is going to blossom into a dominating superstar!
However, interestingly enough, the Nets had 3 draft picks, and all of them (Brook Lopez, Ryan Anderson (top scorer in the PAC-10, and Chris Douglas-Roberts) are known as offensive players who don't play much defense. It should be interesting at least this season!
3) 2nd Round Value Picks
I've really liked Bill Walker from Kansas State, who went to the Wizards, but then was traded to the Celtics for cash. Damn. I would have traded cash for Bill Walker if I knew that's all it took.
The Heat supposedly acquired Mario Chalmers from Kansas, who is a PG to take some pressure off D. Wade.
4) Portland Trail Blazers Trading for Darrell Arthur
At 11:30PM EST, the NBA executive goes to the podium, and says, "we have a trade to announce!" Everyone gets all excited. Suddenly, he explains that the Hornets are trading Darrell Arthur... "for cash considerations!" Immediately the whole arena gets quiet. The NBA is supposed to understand entertainment. Simply trading money for a 1st rounder is just not very exciting for any fan.
UPDATE: After getting traded to Portland for cash, Arthur was packaged to Houston to acquire Batum from France. Then Houston reportedly traded Arthur to Memphis. Arthur was in the leage for only 5 hours before getting traded three times! (from the Hornets to Portland to Houston to Memphis)
5) The Ugliness of Stuart Scott's Interviews of NBA GMs
Stuart Scott interviews GM Larry Bird and proceeds to ask him about the trade for Brandon Rush. Bird then explains that he can't talk about the trade because it's not official yet, and it's only "speculation." Stuart Scott then asks a follow-up question: "so, are you excited about acquiring TJ Ford?" Bird hesitated and seemed like he was going to rip Stuart Scott in half through the satellite feed. Bird continued to act professional though and just again explained that he can't talk about this trade either and that it's only "speculation." Finally Stuart Scott ended the painful interview... to only interview Golden State GM Chris Mullin. Instead of asking about Mullin's selections, Stuart Scott goes for the jugular and asks, "so what are your plans for free agency?" Honestly, does Stuart Scott really believe that Mullin can talk about this??? Mullin then gave a very nice answer about "improving the team." Someone at ESPN needs to prep Stuart Scott to make sure he's asking questions that people can actually answer!