Winners and Losers at the 2021 NBA Trade Deadline

March 26th, 2020

by Alan Lu

Yesterday, many NBA teams made moves fast and furiously at the trade deadline, and teams were wheeling and dealing to try to improve their teams, whether if it was for this season, for both the short-term and the long-term, or for their future.  Also, some moves were made because it seemed like some of the teams just wanted a player or two off their roster.

Here are my breakdowns of the trades that were made, and my conclusion as to who I feel were the big winners and losers of the 2021 NBA trade deadline. Also, here is a detailed link of all the trades that went down during the 2021 NBA trade deadline.

Wendell Carter Jr. and two-time All-Star center, Nikola Vučević were traded for each other yesterday, and both of their teams, the Chicago Bulls and the Orlando Magic came away as winners at the 2021 NBA trade deadline.
Reinhold Matay/USA Today Sports, via DraftKings Nation)

1. The Cleveland Cavaliers trade JaVale McGee to the Denver Nuggets for Isaiah Hartenstein and two future protected second-round picks (2023, 2027).

The Denver Nuggets get:
JaVale McGee
2021 (CLE): 33 GP, 8.0 PPG, 5.2 RPG, 1.2 BPG, 52 FG%, 18.7 PER, 0.9 WS, .084 WS48

The Cleveland Cavaliers get:
Isaiah Hartenstein
2021 (DEN): 30 GP, 3.5 PPG, 2.8 RPG, 0.7 BPG, 51 FG%, 15.6 PER, 0.6 WS, .113 WS48

2023 protected second round pick
2027 protected second round pick

Denver gets a rim protector in acquiring veteran center, JaVale McGee, and he is a champion that has won in Golden State and with the Los Angeles Lakers.  Isaiah Hartenstein was able to get some playing time in Denver, and he projects to do a similar job to McGee, but costs less, and Cleveland gets two extra draft picks.

Trade Grades:
Denver: B
Cleveland: B

2.  The Orlando Magic trades Nikola Vučević and Al-Farouq Aminu to the Chicago Bulls for Wendell Carter Jr., Otto Porter, and 2 first round picks.

The Chicago Bulls get:
Nikola Vučević
2021 (ORL): 44 GP, 24.5 PPG, 11.8 RPG, 3.8 APG, 48 FG%, 41 3PT%, 23.6 PER, 4.5 WS, .143 WS48

Al-Farouq Aminu
2021 (ORL): 17 GP, 5.5 PPG, 5.4 RPG, 1.7 APG, 1.0 SPG, 10 PER, 0.2 WS, .026 WS48

The Orlando Magic get:
Wendell Carter Jr.
2021 (CHI): 32 GP, 10.9 PPG, 7.8 RPG, 2.2 APG, 51 FG%, 36 3PT%, 16.3 PER, 2.2 WS, .132 WS48

Otto Porter
2021 (CHI): 25 GP, 9.9 PPG, 5.5 RPG, 2 APG, 44 FG%, 40 3PT%, 14.8 PER, 1.2 WS, .110 WS48

2 first round picks

Chicago gets the best overall player in the deal in acquiring 2-time All-Star Nikola Vučević, and they will be getting a solid interior player that can shoot and score, as they will place him alongside first-time All-Star Zach LaVine.  Aminu is essentially a throw-in in this deal, and he hasn’t been a relevant NBA player since he last played in Portland.  This makes Chicago better in the short-term, but the question is, how much better does it make them?  It may get them to the playoffs, but they still may have trouble against the tougher teams in the East such as Philadelphia and Brooklyn.

Orlando gets a young, skilled big man in Wendell Carter Jr. that essentially can do a similar job that Vučević does but for cheaper, and Otto Porter is a versatile, but oft-injured swingman that can sometimes be solid when he is on the court but also may be inconsistent, and he is also an expiring contract.  Also, Orlando adds 2 extra first round picks, which is also a nice coup after they traded Vučević away. 

Trade Grades:
Orlando: A-
Chicago: B+

3.  The Orlando Magic traded Evan Fournier to the Boston Celtics for Jeff Teague and two second-round picks.  Jeff Teague was later waived by Orlando.

The Boston Celtics get:
Evan Fournier
2021 (ORL): 26 GP, 19.7 PPG, 3.7 APG, 2.9 RPG, 46 FG%, 39 3PT%, 18.3 PER, 1.9 WS, .117 WS48

The Orlando Magic get:
2 second-round picks

Boston gets a skilled sharpshooter and scorer in Evan Fournier that they can add to their rotation, and Orlando gets extra draft picks to add to their stable.   Fournier is also on an expiring contract.

Trade Grades:
Boston: B+
Orlando: B

4.  The Washington Wizards trade Troy Brown and Moritz Wagner to Chicago for Daniel Gafford and Chandler Hutchison.  (15.) The Boston Celtics trade Daniel Theis to the Chicago Bulls for Moritz Wagner. (I decided to combine two of these trades into one, as this also can be interpreted as a three-team trade.)

The Chicago Bulls get:
Daniel Theis
2021 (BOS): 42 GP, 9.5 PPG, 5.2 RPG, 1.6 APG, 1 BPG, 55 FG%, 35 3PT%, 15.3 PER, 2.8 WS, .131 WS48

Troy Brown
2021 (WAS): 21 GP, 4.3 PPG, 2.9 RPG, 0.9 APG, 37 FG%, 30 3PT%, 6.3 PER, -0.1 WS, -.022 WS48

Javonte Green
2021 (BOS): 25 GP, 4.2 PPG, 2.1 RPG, 55 FG%, 32 3PT%, 12 PER, 0.7 WS, .100 WS48

The Washington Wizards get:

Daniel Gafford
2021 (CHI): 31 GP, 4.7 PPG, 3.3 RPG, 1.1 BPG, 69 FG%, 18.7 PER, 1.5 WS, .183 WS48

Chandler Hutchison
2021 (CHI): 7 GP, 1.9 PPG, 2.9 RPG, 28 FG%, 33 3PT%,  0.4 PER, -0.1 WS, -.100 WS48

The Boston Celtics gets:

Moritz Wagner
2021 (WAS): 25 GP, 7.1 PPG, 2.9 RPG, 1.3 APG, 51 FG%, 31 3PT%, 15.4 PER, 0.9 WS, .121 WS48

Luke Kornet
2021 (CHI): 13 GP, 2 PPG, 1.2 RPG, 33 FG%, 26 3PT%, 9.8 PER, 0.1 WS, .046 WS48

Technically, this was two separate trades, but since one player was traded twice on the same day, I’ll count this as a three-team trade.

Chicago gets a veteran big man that provides interior defense in Daniel Theis, and he has improved his skill set offensively, as he has added a reliable outside shot.  Troy Brown is a versatile, young point forward that played well last season, but has struggled in limited playing time on a disappointing Wizards team this season.  Javonte Green is an athletic, energetic combo guard that could get some key rotation minutes to finish the season with his new team.

The Wizards get an athletic, young big man that has excelled as a rim protector for Chicago off the bench in Daniel Gafford, and he has been a solid, per-minute big man.  Hutchison was drafted to be an athletic, skilled scorer, but after turning in two marginal seasons, he’s played very poorly in a sparse amount of minutes this season, and Hutchison is essentially a throw-in to this deal.

The Celtics add a skilled, mobile young big man that can shoot and score the basketball in Moritz Wagner, but the concern is that he might not rebound or defend nearly as well as Theis did.  The line of thinking is that they may be clearing a higher-end rotation spot for free agent center, Andre Drummond, who was recently bought out Cleveland.  As for Kornet, he is a young stretch big, but he has not played very well this season, and he was likely a throw-in in this deal.

Trade Grades:
Chicago: B
Washington: B-
Boston: C+

5.  Denver Nuggets trade Gary Harris, R.J. Hampton, and a protected 2025 first-round pick to the Orlando Magic for Aaron Gordon and Gary Clark.

The Denver Nuggets get:
Aaron Gordon
2021 (ORL): 25 GP, 14.6 PPG, 6.6 RPG, 4.2 APG, 44 FG%, 38 3PT%, 15 PER, 0.8 WS, .049 WS48

Gary Clark
2021 (ORL): 35 GP, 3.4 PPG, 3.2 RPG, 0.9 APG, 31 FG%, 29 3PT%, 6.1 PER, 0.2 WS, 0.018 WS48

The Orlando Magic get:
Gary Harris
2021 (DEN): 19 GP, 9.7 PPG, 2.5 RPG, 1.7 APG, 44 FG%, 32 3PT%, 9.3 PER, 0.7 WS, 0.060 WS48

R.J. Hampton
2021 (DEN): 25 GP, 2.6 PPG, 2 RPG, 42 FG%, 28 3PT%, 7.8 PER, 0.1 WS, .027 WS48

Protected 2025 first-round pick

Denver gets a very athletic, versatile combo forward in Aaron Gordon, and while he isn’t exactly an elite scorer, he’s a solid shooter, passer, and defender, and he can guard multiple positions.  Gary Clark hasn’t really played well this season, but he could project into a defensive specialist role off the bench, and the best-case version of him on Denver this year would be if he were to be like a discount Torrey Craig. On a small side note, it was surprising that they didn’t trade the very tall and skilled, but seldom used, young big man, Bol Bol, but maybe the Nuggets view him as a high enough upside player to keep on their roster for the long haul.

For Orlando, they get a skilled scoring guard in Gary Harris, and he is a 3 and D veteran role player that will likely get a significant workload with his new team.  R.J. Hampton is a very athletic, speedy combo guard that didn’t play very much, and he is a high-upside prospect, but hasn’t really contributed much to an NBA team right now.  They also will add a first round pick to their stable in this trade.

Trade Grades:
Denver: B
Orlando: B

6.  The Miami Heat trade Maurice Harkless and Chris Silva to the Sacramento Kings for Nemanja Bjelica.

The Miami Heat get:
Nemanja Bjelica
2021 (SAC): 26 GP, 7.2 PPG, 3.8 RPG, 1.9 APG, 46 FG%, 29 3PT%, 12.8 PER, 0.4 WS, .048 WS48

The Sacramento Kings get:
Maurice Harkless
2021 (MIA): 11 GP, 1.4 PPG, 1.2 RPG, 38 FG%, 45 3PT%, 4.6 PER, 0.1 WS, .050 WS48

Chris Silva
2021 (MIA): 11 GP, 2.7 PPG, 2.3 RPG, 0.5 BPG, 69 FG%, 13.4 PER, 0.2 WS, .140 WS48

Miami gets Nemanja Bjelica, a tall, skilled combo forward that can shoot and pass the basketball, but he has struggled with his outside shot this season.  Bjelica is a career 39% three-point shooter.

Maurice Harkless is an athletic defensive specialist, but his struggles to create his own shot or score has limited his playing time this season, and he did not fit in with Miami nearly as well as hoped.  Chris Silva is a backup big man that projects into an energetic, defensive specialist role.

Trade Grades:
Miami: B-
Sacramento: C+

7.  Three-way trade with Philadelphia 76ers, New York Knicks, and Oklahoma City Thunder.

NYK gets: Terrance Ferguson, Vincent Poirier (expected to be waived), 2021 second round pick, Miami’s 2024 second round pick (top-55 protected; from PHI), draft rights to Emir Preldzic (who also recently retired)

NYK gives up: Austin Rivers, Ignas Brazdeikis, 2025 second-round pick

OKC gets: Austin Rivers, Tony Bradley, and 2 2025-second round picks (from NYK and PHI)

OKC gives up: George Hill

PHI gets: George Hill and Ignas Brazdeikis

PHI gives up: Terrance Ferguson, Tony Bradley, 2025 second-round pick

The New York Knicks get:
Terrance Ferguson
2021 (PHI): 13 GP, 0.2 PPG, 0.2 APG, 0.1 RPG, 14 FG%, 0 3PT%, -7 PER, -0.2 WS, -.156 WS48

2 future 2nd Round picks

The Oklahoma City Thunder get:
Austin Rivers
2021 (NYK): 21 GP, 7.3 PPG, 2.2 RPG, 2 APG, 43 FG%, 36 3PT%, 9.6 PER, 0.6 WS, .061 WS48

Tony Bradley
2021 (PHI): 5.5 PPG, 5.2 RPG, 0.9 APG, 0.7 BPG, 68 FG%, 21.1 PER, 1.5 WS, .245 WS48

2 2025 second-round picks

The Philadelphia 76ers get:
George Hill
2021 (OKC): 14 GP, 11.8 PPG, 3.1 APG, 2.1 RPG, 51 FG%, 39 3PT%, 16.1 PER, 1.1 WS, .142 WS48

Ignas Brazdeikis
2021 (NYK): 4 GP, 0.5 PPG, 0.5 RPG, 0.3 APG, 0 FG%, 11.3 PER, 0 WS, .032 WS48

Philadelphia gets a solid, steady point guard in George Hill, and he’s been a very productive, efficient veteran player that has proven to excel at coming off the bench.  Brazdeikis is a young, skilled forward, but he has not played well in the NBA, and he’s essentially a throw-in in this deal.

Oklahoma City gets a solid backup big man in Tony Bradley, as he has been very efficient as a per-minute big man off the bench, but he sometimes did not see as much playing time as expected when he was with Philly.  Austin Rivers is a skilled combo guard that can put up points in bunches, but he can be too inconsistent at times, which limited his playing time more as the season progressed in New York.  The Thunder also get two 2025 second round picks to add to their stable.

The New York Knicks gave up Rivers, Brazdeikis, and a 2025 second round pick to add seldom used swingman, Terrance Ferguson, and they took back no extra draft picks, which seemed like an odd acquisition choice on their end.  Ferguson is an athletic swingman that has projected into a 3 and D role in the NBA.  He’s been an above average defender, but aside from a decent sophomore season in this league, he’s been an enormous disappointment offensively, and he’s basically a reclamation project at this stage.  Perhaps the Knicks wanted to clear up more playing time for rookie point guard, Immanuel Quickley, who has played very well this season.

This trade doesn’t look very good on New York’s end, but compared to Houston’s trade, the Knicks’ deal is basically a nothing burger, similar to the trades that Utah, San Antonio, and Golden State made at the trade deadline.  Austin Rivers had played well early on, but he was falling out of the rotation anyways, and at the high end, maybe Ferguson could end up being like a Brandon Rush type of 3 and D role player that could fight for a spot in New York’s rotation sometime in the future, if not this year.

Trade Grades:
Philadelphia: A-
Oklahoma City: B
New York: C

8. The Toronto Raptors trade Norman Powell to the Portland Trail Blazers for Gary Trent Jr. and Rodney Hood

The Portland Trail Blazers get:
Norman Powell
2021 (TOR): 42 GP, 19.6 PPG, 3.0 RPG, 1.8 APG, 50 FG%, 44 3PT%, 17.6 PER, 3.2 WS, .119 WS48

The Toronto Raptors get:

Gary Trent Jr.
2021 (POR): 41 GP, 15 PPG, 2.2 RPG, 1.4 APG, 41 FG%, 40 3PT%, 12.7 PER, 1.3 WS, .048 WS48

Rodney Hood
2021 (POR): 38 GP, 4.7 PPG, 1.9 RPG, 1.2 APG, 36 FG%, 30 3PT%, 5.1 PER, -0.7 WS, -.044 WS48

The Portland Trail Blazers get an athletic, scorer in Norman Powell, who’s been a solid 3 and D player for Toronto, and his grit and tenacity will likely bode well in playing for his new team.  Powell also has a player option that he can pick up at the end of this season, but he can opt out, which would make him a free agent.  If that were to happen, which may be likely, then the Blazers essentially traded Trent to rent Powell, which would hurt their trade grade significantly.

The Raptors get a young, skilled sharpshooter in Gary Trent Jr., and he had played very well in the Orlando bubble last year.  Hood is a former sharpshooter that has struggled mightily since his return from an Achilles injury, and there’s a significant question if Hood can ever return to being the player he once was.

Trade Grades:
Portland: C+
Toronto: B-

9. Toronto Raptors traded Matt Thomas to the Jazz for a 2021 second round pick (via GSW)

The Utah Jazz get:
Matt Thomas
2021 (TOR): 26 GP, 2.7 PPG, 0.8 RPG, 39 FG%, 41 3PT%, 8.1 PER, 0.1 WS, .025 WS48

The Toronto Raptors get:
2021 second round pick

Matt Thomas is a sharpshooter who has not been able to stick in Toronto’s rotation due to his average athletic gifts and lack of defensive prowess.  Toronto basically dealt him away to get a second round pick, which also clears up a roster spot for their team.

Trade Grades:
Utah: C
Toronto: C

10. The Atlanta Hawks traded Rajon Rondo to the Los Angeles Clippers for Lou Williams, two second-round picks, and cash

The Los Angeles Clippers get:
Rajon Rondo
2021 (ATL): 27 GP, 3.9 PPG, 3.5 APG, 2.0 RPG, 40 FG%, 38 3PT%, 9.9 PER, 0.2 WS, .021 WS48

The Atlanta Hawks get:
Lou Williams
2021 (LAC): 42 GP, 12.1 PPG, 3.4 APG, 2.1 RPG, 42 FG%, 38 3PT%, 15.8 PER, 1.6 WS, .082 WS48

2 second round picks

It was a curious move that Rondo signed with Atlanta to start the season, since many people did not think that the Hawks were viable contenders, and that the line of thinking was that they would just play young guys, and Rondo would not see nearly as much playing time as expected.  Well, the Hawks played some veterans, but not to the extent that some thought they would, and Rondo quickly fell out of favor in Atlanta.

The Clippers get a veteran point guard who is a solid playmaker and defender, and he’s added an improved outside shot.  On his best days, Rondo is a smart, skilled point guard, plays with a lot of grit and tenacity, and he’s a former NBA All-Star, but he’s also a below average free throw shooter who on his worst days can give coaches headaches.  It’s a very odd trade on paper on the Clippers’ end, but the line of thinking is that they maybe they’ll get playoff Rondo and improve their defense, which if that is the case, could be an improvement over their playoff performance last season.

The Hawks get a very skilled scorer in Lou Williams, and he’ll pack a strong scoring punch off the bench to help his new team as the new super sixth man.  The Hawks also get two second round picks, and cash, and Williams is probably a much better fit than Rondo ever was with them.  This still won’t help the Hawks on the defensive end, but on paper, and there are concerns about the rift in the Clippers’ locker room at the end of their 2020 postseason run.  Still, Williams could really improve their bench unit, and they managed to get a lot of assets out of a player that they barely played in Rondo.

Trade Grades:
Atlanta: B+
LA Clippers: C+

11. The Toronto Raptors trade Terence Davis to the Sacramento Kings for a future second round pick.

The Sacramento Kings get:
Terence Davis

2021 (TOR): 34 GP, 6.9 PPG, 1.9 RPG, 41 FG%, 36 3PT%, 10.9 PER, 0.2 WS, .023 WS49

The Toronto Raptors get:
A future second round pick

Terence Davis was named to the 2020 All-Rookie 2nd team last year, but he was sort of in Toronto head coach Nick Nurse’s doghouse intermittently this season.  Toronto basically dumped him for a bag of beans, or to basically clear up a roster spot. 

Either way, Toronto seemed desperate to get him off the roster, which now makes the media voters’ all-rookie 2nd team pick of Davis over New York Knicks’ fan favorite and current second-year guard, R.J. Barrett, a ridiculous one to say the least. Right now, Knicks’ guard, R.J. Barrett is having a solid sophomore season and is looking like he could be a future All-Star out in the East, and Terence Davis looks like he’ll bounce in and out of NBA teams’ rotations as a journeyman bench player for years to come.

Trade Grades:
Sacramento: B-
Toronto: C

12. The Houston Rockets trade Victor Oladipo to the Miami Heat for Avery Bradley, Kelly Olynyk, and a 2022 pick swap.

The Miami Heat get:
Victor Oladipo
2021 (IND/HOU): 29 GP, 20.8 PPG, 5 RPG, 4.7 APG, 1.3 SPG, 41 FG%, 33 3PT%, 15.3 PER, 0.7 WS, .036 WS48

The Houston Rockets gets:
Avery Bradley
2021 (MIA): 10 GP, 8.5 PPG, 1.8 RPG, 1.4 APG, 47 FG%, 42 3PT%, 10.4 PER, 0.3 WS, .076 WS48

Kelly Olynyk
2021 (MIA): 43 GP, 10 PPG, 6.1 RPG, 2.1 APG, 43 FG%, 32 3PT%, 12.1 PER, 2 WS, .083 WS48

2022 pick swap

Houston had previously acquired Victor Oladipo along with a few others in a deal involving Brooklyn in which they sent away James Harden, and it was rumored that they wanted to bill him, John Wall, and Christian Wood as “the wow factor.”  Well, Oladipo did not want to sign an extension with the Rockets, and so he was dealt once again.

Oladipo is an athletic guard that had ruptured a quad tendon, and he has had leg injuries that has sidelined him for parts of three seasons.  He briefly returned to prominence by starting out well with Indiana this season, and it was enough to get him to be a major player in the Harden deal.  He struggled to be an efficient scorer in Houston though, and he was basically a shell of his former All-Star self in Houston.  On his good days, he is an athletic combo guard that can provide scoring and energy when he is on the floor, and there may be a fair chance that a more motivated Oladipo can be a solid player for Miami.

The Rockets managed to get Avery Bradley, who has been a 3 and D player in the NBA, but he’s not an elite scorer nor defender.  They also acquired Kelly Olynyk, who can provide some scoring and some punch either as a starter or off the bench.  They also added a 2022 pick swap with Miami, though most people feel Miami will be good next season, so that pick swap may amount to nothing.

For reference of the old James Harden trade, here it were the details of the trade, via Shams Charania:

Here were the details of the James Harden to Brooklyn trade as reported by Shams Charania that happened a couple of months ago.
(Source: Twitter/@ShamsCharania)

The Brooklyn Nets received:
James Harden

The Houston Rockets received:
Victor Oladipo, Rodions Kurucs, Dante Exum (who is still injured), 3 Brooklyn 1st Rders, 1 Milwaukee 1st Rd pick, 4 Brooklyn pick swaps. 

(Also worth noting, Houston didn’t have full control of their own first round picks, as they had dealt those to Oklahoma City in the Russell Westbrook trade.)

The Indiana Pacers received:
Caris LeVert, 2nd Round pick.

The Cleveland Cavaliers received:
Jarrett Allen, Taurean Prince.

This tweet, via Legion Hoops later had the details of the next trade that the Houston Rockets would later make this season.

The P.J. Tucker trade that Houston made with the Milwaukee Bucks over a week ago.
(Source: Twitter/@LegionHoops)

Rodions Kurucs was later traded with P.J. Tucker and MIL’s 2022 first round pick to Milwaukee for D.J. Wilson, D.J. Augustin, and a 2023 unprotected first round pick, and a future first round pick swap.  For clarity’s sake, Tucker would be dealt for Augustin, and Kurucs would be dealt for D.J. Wilson.


Houston essentially traded James Harden for more or less….

Avery Bradley, Kelly Olynyk, D.J. Wilson, Dante Exum, 3 BKN 1st Round picks, a 2023 MIL first round pick, 4 Brooklyn pick swaps, a pick swap with Milwaukee, and a pick swap with Miami.

Avery Bradley
2021 (MIA): 10 GP, 8.5 PPG, 1.8 RPG, 1.4 APG, 47 FG%, 42 3PT%, 10.4 PER, 0.3 WS, .076 WS48

Kelly Olynyk
2021 (MIA): 43 GP, 10 PPG, 6.1 RPG, 2.1 APG, 43 FG%, 32 3PT%, 12.1 PER, 2 WS, .083 WS48

D.J. Wilson
2021 (MIL/HOU): 16 GP, 4.1 PPG, 2.4 RPG, 39 FG%, 36 3PT%, 9.4 PER, 0.1 WS, .043 WS48

Dante Exum (Currently out with a calf injury)
2021 (CLE/HOU): 6 GP, 3.8 PPG, 2.8 RPG, 2.2 APG, 38 FG%, 6 PER, 0 WS, -.018 WS48

So, as continuation of the James Harden trade, essentially, Houston traded a perennial superstar and a 1-time MVP award winner for two rotation players, two fringe roster players, first round picks that will all likely be late first round picks, and pick swaps that may amount to nothing because Milwaukee, Miami, and Brooklyn all will probably be good teams for years.

Houston didn’t get a high-end asset in return out of trading James Harden, and so Houston’s trade grade gets knocked as a result.  Houston is a now bad team, and Oklahoma City now owns Houston’s original first round picks as a result of the Russell Westbrook trade.  It’s unlikely that the pick swaps that Houston received will amount to much if anything, because they consistently traded with good to very good teams.  In the case if it does and if they land on their picks though, I’ll tip my cap to them, but right now, Houston’s trades do not look good at all.

Essentially, the Harden trade was for expiring contracts and picks that will likely be late-first round picks.  It was rumored that Philadelphia had offered Ben Simmons to try to get Harden but that they were turned down because Houston allegedly wanted Tyrese Maxey, and were also reportedly apprehensive about trading Harden to Darryl Morey.  If that’s the case, then the Houston Rockets may really need to look at themselves in the mirror about the direction that their franchise may be headed in the future.

Trade Grades:
Miami: B-
Houston: D

13. The Golden State Warriors traded Brad Wanamaker, a 2022 second round pick (from TOR via PHI; top 54 protected), and cash considerations to the Charlotte Hornetts for a 2025 second round pick (top 55 protected)

The Charlotte Hornets get:
Brad Wanamaker
2021 (GSW): 39 GP, 4.7 PPG, 2.5 APG, 1.7 RPG, 35 FG%, 21 3PT%, 8.5 PER, 0.4 WS, .031 WS48

2022 second round pick (from TOR via PHI; top 54 protected)
Cash considerations

The Golden State Warriors get:
2025 second round pick (top 55 protected)

Golden State seemed to give up a lot just to get Brad Wanamaker off their roster, which included a heavily protected second round pick, and cash to acquire a similarly heavily protected pick that they may never actually get.  They are able to clear a roster spot, for what it’s worth.

The Hornets get a veteran guard who was a decent role player with the Boston Celtics, but Wanamaker has played poorly this season, as he did not play well with the Warriors.  But with LaMelo Ball injured, there may be some playing time that can be had for Wanamaker in the meantime.

Trade Grades:
Golden State: C-
Charlotte: C+

14. The Golden State Warriors trade Marquese Chriss and cash to the San Antonio Spurs for the rights to Cady Lalanne.  The Warriors made that trade to save luxury tax and to not pay an injured player.

SAS gets:
Marquese Chriss – Out for the Season (Leg)
2021 (GSW): 2 GP, 6.5 PPG, 6.5 RPG, 1.0 BPG, 36 FG%, 20 3PT%, 11.8 PER, 0 WS, -.034 WS48


The Golden State Warriors get:
The rights to Cady Lalanne

2021 (KBL): 33 GP, 15.5 PPG, 8.8 RPG, 1.0 BPG, 0.8 APG, 50 FG%, 40 3PT%, 2.6 WS, .174 WS48

The Spurs traded for a young, athletic big man who is currently out for the season in Marquese Chriss, but he could be a solid gamble worth taking on.  On the other hand, he won’t be able to play this season, and it’s uncertain if he’ll be able to get significant playing time with his new team next year.

The Warriors basically clear a roster spot, and while Lalanne is playing well in the Korean Basketball League, it’s possible or likely even that he may never come over to play in the NBA.

Trade Grades:

San Antonio: C
Golden State: C

15. The New Orleans Pelicans are traded J.J. Redick and Nicolo Melli to the Dallas Mavericks for James Johnson, Wes Iwundu, and a 2021 2nd Round Pick.

The Dallas Mavericks get:
J.J. Redick
2021 (NOP): 31 GP, 8.7 PPG, 1.7 RPG, 1.3 APG, 41 FG%, 36 3PT%, 96 FT%, 11.2 PER, 0.7 WS, .059 WS48

Nicolò Melli
2021 (NOP): 22 GP, 2 PPG, 2.6 RPG, 1.1 APG, 25 FG%, 19 3PT, 5.9 PER, 0 WS, .002 WS48

The New Orleans Pelicans get:

James Johnson
2021 (DAL): 29 GP, 5.7 PPG, 3 RPG, 1.7 APG, 0.8 SPG, 0.8 BPG, 46 FG%, 12.2 PER, 0.7 WS, .068 WS48

Wes Iwundu
2021 (DAL): 23 GP, 2.1 PPG, 1.9 RPG, 33 FG%, 13 3PT%, 4.9 PER, 0.1 WS, .010 WS48

2021 2nd Round Pick

The Dallas Mavericks get a veteran sharpshooter in J.J. Redick, and he will provide strong floor spacing and will help their offense off the bench.  Melli is a stretch big who had a decent rookie season, but he has not played well at all this year, and he in all likelihood, is probably a throw-in in this deal.

James Johnson is a tough, rugged combo forward whose versatility and defensive skills could help him New Orleans, and it was a little surprising that Dallas traded him, but he’s been inconsistent as a shooter over the years.  Iwundu is a very athletic swingman whose lack of shooting skills has limited his playing time.  New Orleans gets an extra pick.

Trade Grades:
Dallas: B
New Orleans: C+

Detroit Pistons’ current head coach, Dwane Casey, Orlando Magic’s current president of basketball operations Jeff Weltman, and Toronto Raptors’ team president Masai Ujiri in a dated 2013 photo.
Stan Behal/Toronto Sun/QMI Agency, via National Post)

Overall Team Grades for their Trades at the 2021 Trade Deadline:

Orlando Magic: A-
Philadelphia 76ers: A-
Chicago Bulls: B+
Atlanta Hawks: B+
Denver Nuggets: B
Dallas Mavericks: B
Boston Celtics: B
Oklahoma City Thunder: B
Cleveland Cavaliers: B
Miami Heat: B-
Washington Wizards: B-
Sacramento Kings: C+
Toronto Raptors: C+
Portland Trail Blazers: C+
Los Angeles Clippers: C+
New Orleans Pelicans: C+
Charlotte Hornets: C+
Utah Jazz: C
San Antonio Spurs: C
Golden State Warriors: C
New York Knicks: C
Houston Rockets: D

So, in conclusion, I would probably state the big winners of the trade deadline would be Philadelphia, Orlando, Chicago, and Atlanta. 

Winners of the 2021 Trade Deadline: Orlando Magic, Philadelphia 76ers, Chicago Bulls, Atlanta Hawks

Orlando was able to get a solid young big man in Wendell Carter Jr. as well as Otto Porter and two first round picks out of Vučević and Aminu, which looks to be a very good return on that deal.  They also managed to get two second round picks after trading Fournier on an expiring contract, and they also acquired Gary Harris, a promising project player in R.J. Hampton, and another first round pick after trading Aaron Gordon away.

The 76ers didn’t give up very much, and they added a solid veteran point guard in acquiring George Hill.  They did part ways with backup center Tony Bradley, but he didn’t start the year in their rotation, and Hill is a solid point guard whose efficient play should bolster the 76ers’ rotation.

The Bulls get the best player in the Vučević-Carter deal, and they immediately will improve to increase their odds to get to the playoffs significantly.  On the other hand, they did seem to give up plenty to get Vučević, and while they parted ways with a solid young big man in Daniel Gafford, the Bulls were able to get a solid center back in getting Daniel Theis, along with two other players in Troy Brown and Javonte Green that could potentially help their roation.

The Hawks were able to turn a player that they seldom used into getting a solid scorer off the bench in Lou Williams, and they get two second round picks, and cash.

Losers of the 2021 Trade Deadline: Houston Rockets

The loser of this trade deadline looks to be the Houston Rockets.  The Rockets did not get a great return overall after having traded James Harden away, and it looks worse, especially if they could have gotten a lot more back instead.  Instead, they got back a lot of spare parts, role players, picks that will likely be late first round picks, and pick swaps from good teams that may amount to nothing.

Thank you for reading.  That’s my analysis of how the 2021 NBA trade deadline unfolded, and time will tell to see if things go as expected or not. The NCAA Tournament and the NIT will resume play tomorrow, and it will be interesting to see how that will all unfold this weekend.

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