Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Artest Happily Moves to Houston, Gutsy Sulking in Cleveland

The Kings have agreed to ship Ron Artest to Houston in exchange for Donte Green (2008 1st round selection), Bobby Jackson (1 year remaining at $6 mill), and Houston's 1st round pick in 2009 (which should be in the mid-20s if not even lower).

I have to applaud the Houston Rockets for making this move! It's a fantastic move, even in spite of Donte Green's sometimes stellar play during summer league (which apparently started out with a 40-point debut, but then he shot 31% for three games after that, before rebounding with a 20+ performance).

The Rockets now have a sweet starting lineup in:
PG - R. Alston, SG-T. McGrady, C-Yao, SF-R. Artest, PF-L. Scola ; with S. Battier, A. Brooks, and recent addition B. Barry coming off the bench. The Rockets quite simply have to be considered amongst the top teams for next season, even with the Western Conference still being brutal.

The thing that upsets me in all of this? Why didn't the Cleveland Cavaliers pull a trade off for Artest to help LeBron??? The Cavs have the expiring contracts of Wally ($13 million) and Snow ($7 million), as well as Damon Jones ($4.5 million). The Cavs also have future 1st round draft picks to trade away! Similarly, the Cavs could have traded their current 1st round draft pick, JJ Hickson, who's only 19, for Artest. I suppose the Cavs have decided that JJ Hickson should be ready to contribute much faster than anticipated. Otherwise, I can't understand why the Cavs aren't the team celebrating the arrival of Ron Artest.

Of course, as mentioned in the comments a few weeks ago, the fact that Ben Wallace happens to be on the Cavs could be another reason that the Cavs did not trade for Artest, since the two do not like each other and it was their original fight that started the 2004 Brawl at the Palace of Auburn Hills.

No comments: