Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Shaq for Shawn?

There's one thing that I always thought baseball had over the NBA and NFL, and that was trades. Usually, win a big-time trade needs to happen, MLB teams seem eager to pull the trigger. Most of this is due to no salary cap, so small market teams have no choice but to get what they can for their stars (see: Santana, Johan). But another big part of it is that GMs never want to look bad, so they refuse to make any move that could bite them in the ass later.

If there was any NBA team I thought would never make "that trade", it would have been the Phoenix Suns. This is a team who routinely gives up their first round draft pick every year to save cash. Needless to say, I was shocked to learn that the Suns are about to trade Shawn Marion and Marcus Banks for Shaquille O'Neal. So let's look at this from both sides.


There is no reason the Heat shouldn't have made this trade. They are one of the worst teams in the league, and they need a different look. Maybe pairing Marion up with Dwayne Wade can turn things around. At any rate, Shaq is old, so at least they get younger.


Here's the real reason the Suns got rid of Marion: he didn't want to be there. This team has had chemistry problems for a while, and Marion was at the center of it. Apparently, they thought they had to get rid of him to make a title run. This is both understandable and deserving of applause. Not enough teams make moves to improve their chemistry.

They only problem is that Shaq is old, and he could never run. The Suns' whole game plan is set on running up and down the floor. Something's gotta give. And why wouldn't they shop around for somebody else? Did they not think about getting Pau Gasol before the Lakers snagged him? Or was it the Gasol trade that prompted Phoenix to make a move of their own? After all, the Lakers are their biggest rival, so why not go and get Shaq?

Anyways, a lot of questions need to be answered. When Phoenix hired Steve Kerr to be their GM in the off-season, they obviously wanted to try something new. And I can understand why they would want to make a move now, since Steve Nash's back isn't going to hold up for too much longer. But was this the right trade for the Suns? Only time will tell.


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