MGB8 wrote:Back to trades, I think I have a two trade plan for a "win now" mode that is realistic and would make the Bulls, if not quite contenders, a dangerous team that no one would want to play.
First is the Lauri for Derozan dual sign and trade that I've been pushing for a while. Second is a Thad + Sato (and maybe a future 2nd rounder, but not sure it would be needed) for Ricky Rubio + Hernangomez swap.
On the Derozan trade - you'd have to overpay Derozan for his age and projected play level for a guy who will be turning 32 before next season starts. That said, Derozan is playing at maybe the best level of his career in terms of overall impact, and seems to be very good at taking care of his body.
So I went to look at some other players who came in with elite athleticism and took good care of their bodies to see when they declined. Vince Carter was still elite his year 32 season. He did decline the following year to merely an "good" player at 33, but that also came coupled with a move to the Stan Van Gundy, Dwight Howard Magic. It clearly wasn't working there and early next season he was traded to Phoenix, then left for Dallas after that, but the bottom line is that he wasn't the same.
Dwyane Wade is another good comp (who also didn't shoot the 3 well). He was 35 when he came to the Bulls and while he put up good stats and wasn't really done until the following season -- and fit issues limited his effectiveness, you could see that he wasn't the same player he had been. That said, he was still pretty darn good his 32, 33, and 34 year old seasons, the first being the last "cHeatles" season, the next two where Wade was carrying a middling Heat team with Bosh injuries, etc.
Grant Hill came back from injury at 32 and was excellent, but got hurt again and declined into into more "solid starter." Interestingly, he's a guy who never shot well from 3... until he was 37 years old.
Our own Scottie Pippen was very good at 32 (first year post Michael), but hurt, and he was never the same after that (though solid enough in Houston and the first year in Portland).
I looked at Shawn Marion and Jason Richardson, but both had clear declines before hitting 30. Ditto McGrady. None were playing like Derozan is playing at 31.
On the high end, our own Michael Jeffrey Jordan was still putting up elite production in his year 32, 33 and 34 seasons.. Championships 4, 5 and 6. Then he retired so we didn't see if there would be a drop-off... when he came back at 38 and 39 years old, he still put up pretty darn good production for the Wiz (I was actually kind of surprised, looking at the stats), but it was clearly not the same MJ. Lebron has similarly not really subject to much decline 32-33-34. Neither did Kobe. Neither did Clyde.
Bottom line - sign Derozan and absent injury, you're still likely to get a really high level player next season. The following two seasons would be riskier, but the likely downside wouldn't be a complete drop-off, but instead overpaying a "solid/above-average" starter, with some chance that you don't see that much decrease in production...
Worth the gamble, IMO, if the goal is to win now.