Not my usual bailiwick here, trades and breaking news (unless of the false variety). Still, an interesting day and since everyone else is burning up the cyberverse, I thought I’d jump on the bandwagon and see if I can't make the math just a little hazier. The Magic have essentially gone all in, blowing apart their team and taking on some serious long term money. Richardson’s an expiring contract so no gamble there, they’re essentially getting a free look at the Suns’ leading scorer. Hedo on the other hand has escalators built into his deal and won’t be easy to move, especially after disappointing outings with both Toronto and Phoenix. Gilbert of course, has a bundle left, along with all the other baggage. That's balanced by Rashard Lewis, second-highest salary in the league, heading to Washington.
Have I managed to confuse anybody yet? The Suns get Carter’s expiring $17.3 mil along with movable mid-priced parts if Pietrus and Gortat don’t work out. They're taking on more payroll now but only for the rest of the season. With Nash's future in flux there, they seem to be looking at what comes next rather than what comes now. Unless of course, Vinsanity tears it up in a major way.
Although three teams were involved, Orlando's the one everyone will be watching, a huge rebuild for a team that's #4 in the east (recent road losses notwithstanding). They'll have a ton of scoring power with Richardson, Arenas and Hedo coming in although not quite the same defensive presence. Van Gundy's already said that Jameer Nelson will remain a starter (tab Arenas as a sixth man for the immediate time being). They've lost some obvious depth at center, Earl Clark's a hardworking kid but he hasn't played much yet. Look for them to pick up a veteran big in the coming days.
I'd link all the legit analysis on the subject but it can all be had at Hoopshype, including plenty of twitter if you get to it quick and full-fledged articles if you don't.
Laker shortcuts - a nice winning road trip, one more against Toronto tomorrow before returning home for a tuneup against the Bucks before the big Christmas Day game. Kobe sprained his shooting hand pinkie against the 76'ers last night. He says it won't stop him from playing, fairly impressive considering that the mitt already resembled a crudely molded athritic lump of clay. Joe Smith's getting some triangle tutaledge from the staff. Barnes and Odom have been playing up a storm as of late. Bynum's easing back in, shoring up the interior defense. Sasha's still gone. Maybe the season of the witch has passed. Keep an ear peeled for fire engines, just in case.