By Marcus Thompson
Saturday, June 16th, 2007 at 10:36 pm in Uncategorized.
Since the word on the streets is that Kobe still wants a trade (he reportedly told owner Jerry Buss in Spain that he still wants out), the only natural thing for us Bay Area hoop fans to do is evaluate how that impacts the Warriors.
ESPN’s Ric Bucher said his sources tell him that Kobe narrowed his list down to New York, Chicago and Phoenix (though I am a firm believer he would expand that list if necessary, or if the incentives were right). Not only would the Warriors benefit from not having to deal with Kobe four times a year, but they perhaps could have the door opened for another opportunity if Bryant lands in Chicago.
It’s very unlikely the Lakers would put Kobe in Phoenix. That leaves the Knicks and Bulls. The Warriors are pulling for Chicago for one reason. You guessed it (maybe). Kevin Garnett.
The Bulls – who have highly touted youngsters Luol Deng, Kirk Hinrich, Ben Gordon, Tyrus Thomas and P.J. Brown’s expiring contract — are the Warriors stiffest competition should the Timberwolves put KG on the market. The Knicks and the Mavericks don’t have as much to offer as the Warriors. The Bulls do.
But if Chicago acquires Kobe, they likely won’t have enough tools to cop KG either. If the Lakers do ship Kobe, they would assuredly keep Bynum and Odom, which means they wouldn’t need KG. If they did want him, they would have to give up the talent they got for Kobe, which means they’ve traded Kobe for KG — not a good deal.
That leaves the Warriors, who have Monta Ellis, Andris Biedrins, three draft picks this year (plus they can afford to part with next year’s pick) and a couple of capable veterans in Richardson and Harrington.
Tell me that’s not better than Jamaal Crawford and Jerome James!