On Friday the TrailBlazers signed Restricted Free Agent PF Paul Millsap to an offer sheet at 4 years around 36 million. The Jazz have indicated that they plan to match the offer, determining that Millsap is their PF of the future. The Jazz have also told current starting PF Carlos Boozer that he is not part of their future plans and will try to trade him. So now the million dollar question, make that 12.6 million (Boozer's salary next year which is the last year of his contract) dollar question is, where will Boozer be playing basketball in 2009-2010?
Many teams, including the Cavs, have a major need at PF. Some other teams include the Nets, Pacers and now the Bucks with Charlie Villanueva going to Detroit. However none of those teams is likely to get Boozer's services. The Cavs just overpaid their starting PF Andy Varejao a six year 48+ million dollar deal. A little bit too much money for a guy who gets 8ppg and 7rpg. The Nets are in a saving spree as they will try to get a big name Free Agent next year like LeBron, but if they can't get Mr. James, Joe Johnson would be a good consolation prize. Neither the Bucks nor Pacers have any real pieces to give back to the Jazz or a third team involved in the trade. Se where does Boozer end up?
I have come up with 3 different trade scenarios and have tried them out via ESPN.com's NBA Trade Machine:
First my ultimate Miami Heat fantasy trade scenario. It involves Miami, Toronto, and Utah.
The draft pick back from the Heat that they traded in the Jermaine O'Neal-Shawn Marion trade.
All of the players being traded are in the last year of their current contract or can opt out next year.
It makes sense for everyone:
-The Heat get a superstar in Bosh to help keep Wade in Miami.
-The Raptors get something for the unhappy Bosh, plus they can see how Boozer, Hedo and company mesh together and if it doesn't work both Boozer and the sharpshooting Korver have expiring contracts
-The Jazz get 2 young talented players and an expiring contract. This trade would save them 4 million dollars which could be used to match the Millsap offer by Portland. Cook can come off the bench and hit shots. The Jazz would also have a nasty young 1-4 of DWill, Ronnie Brewer, Beasley and Millsap, the average age of those 4 would be 23.25.
My second trade would involve Chicago, Portland, and Utah.
Carlos Boozer-PF-Utah-12.6m (1 year)
Kirk Hinrich-PG-CHI-9.5m (4 years.)
Tyrus Thomas-PF-CHI-4.7m (1 year)
Martell Webster-SF-POR-4.3 (4 years)
This trade makes almost too much sense, therefor it probably won't happen. If this trade was going to happen it would have already occurred.
-POR would get a starting PG who can run an uptempo system with all of the young talent and athletes that the Trail Blazers have.
-The Bulls would get the low post scorer they desire while only giving up two very expendable players.
-The Jazz would get a shooter in Webster and an athletic role playing PF in Tyrus Thomas. Most importantly they would save over 3 million dollars in cap/luxury tax space.
My third and final trade involves Utah, Charlotte, and New York.
Carlos Boozer-PF-Utah-12.6m (1 year)
New York's 1.4m Trade Exception from the Renaldo Balkman trade
Boris Diaw-CF-CHR-9m (2 years)
Alexis Ajinca-C-CHR-1.3m (1 year)
Wilson Chandler-SF-NY-1.25m (1 year)
Jared Jefferies-CF-NY-6.4M (2 years)
-Why not send Boozer back to the state of North Carolina where he played his collge ball at Duke. In Charlotte he would form one of the best front court duos in leage with Emeka Okafor. With Larry Brown as the coach and with Gerald Wallace on the wing, the Bobcats would be able to make the playoffs for the first time in franchise history.
-The Knicks and Coach D'Antoni would get the versatile Diaw who he coached in Phoenix and the long athletic project in Ajinca.
-The Jazz would once again save money, this time almost 5 million, and get two versatile forwards to compliment their core of DWill, Okur, Millsap and Ronnie Brewer.