The Murphleavy Trade in (2+ Years of) Hindsight

In January 2007, the Warriors shipped Troy Murphy, Mike Dunleavy, Ike Diogu and Keith McLeod in exchange for Stephen Jackson, Al Harrington, Josh Powell and Sarunas Jasikevicius.

The Pacers still have Murphy and Dunleavy. Both are starters.The Warriors have … Vladimir Radmanovic, injured Raja Bell and absent Speedy Claxton.

But, Golden State did get a historic playoff run and a 48-win season out of the pair, and they freed themselves from Murphleavy’s contracts. And the Pacers haven’t won more than 36 games since the trade. Still, the Pacers have solid veterans to bank on (at least when Dunleavy’s healthy), haven’t had nearly as much drama and turmoil, and they appear to be closer to turning things around than the Warriors.

So, looking back on that deal, who got the better end of the trade? Was renting Harrington and Jackson worth it in the long haul?

Marcus Thompson

  • sartre

    On balance, I think it was worth it. My becoming a dubs fan coincided with the trade and the good times it brought helps sustain me through the front office’s subsequent criminal ineptitude and Nellie’s sometimes baffling game management and his poor handling of certain players.

  • Oregonguy

    Yes, well worth it. Even though the Warriors today have only a journeyman on their active roster to show for the trade, the excitement in-between has been far more exquisite than a couple of plodding 36 win seasons would have been.

  • Greg

    I was pumped at the time to hear that we had gotten rid of the Murphleavy duo. I’m convinced we wouldn’t have made the playoffs in ’07 with Baron and the Murphleavys. The chemistry would have been way different even with Baron at the helm. Even though the last few years have been painful, I am really glad we picked up Bell and freed up some nice cap space. Hopefully Bell gets healthy soon and sticks around.

  • Jeremy

    Is this a real question? Was it worth it to deal two never beens or will bes for two major cogs that helped the Warriors to one of the greatest moments in Warrior’s history and one of the all time upsets in NBA history? Of course it was worth it!

  • TheGuru

    Have we heard if Bell’s wrist is season ending? There was a chance the injury was a 6 week deal.

  • TheGuru

    Regarding the question. I’d take Murphy on this team as a center. He can stretch the D with is outside shot. He is a perfect Nelson center.If we could of traded Dunleavy for Jax straight up and kept Murphy it would of worked out better.

  • Scotty

    No question we still came out on top. Ask me when the Pacers win a playoff series with Murphy and Dunleavy as key cogs.

  • Brian

    The trade was a win-win. Both teams needed change. No question it worked out well for the Warriors. The Harrington and Crawford trades are defensible too. The only horrible decision on the Warriors part was giving Jack that ridiculous contract extension. Just imagine what we could have got for him this year if he was expiring. A lot more than Radman and a broken down Raja Bell, that’s for damn sure.

  • Fierce South

    I think the trade was worth it. The highlight for me, besides the Mavs playoff upset and the short lived “We Believe” era, was the surreal sight of Jessica Alba in Oracle Arena. Yes, the Warriors were relevant after the trade.

    It was all very exciting especially since Warrior basketball had been synonymous with pathetic basketball and consecutive lottery apperances. Too bad it all came to a screeching halt. Oh, well.

    Unfortunately, following are those who probably benefited most from the trade in the long run.

    Freed of Nellie-ball and much deserved fan taunting, and relieved of the high expectations that come in return for being drafted high by the Warriors, he seemed to thrive with the Pacers (until getting hurt).

    Robert “Bobby” Rowell & his Ego:
    If the Warriors didn’t perform as well following the trade, maybe Rowell would’ve been fired by now. Rowell was seemingly given more authority (i.e. signing players and coaches to extensions even though they didn’t deserve them) after the brief Warriors renaissance.

    Don Nelson:
    Eventually rewarded with a $12M two year extension. Nevermind that Nelson shows little interest in coaching during games or that he seems past his prime. The Nelson of old who used to get up off the bench and contest ref calls is no longer. In his place is a seemingly half-cognizant coach who delegates much of his authority to assistant coaches.

    Stephen Jackson:
    He of the multi-year extension. Without trade, there’s no way Stack Jack would’ve received the huge extension from any other team.

    Chris Cohan:
    He suckered thousands of season ticket holders to renew based on a season and a half of competitive basketball.

  • Fierce South

    As I recall after the trade, a lot of media experts said the Pacers received the better end of the deal because of Ike Diogu.

    Ike Diogu? I wonder what they were smoking?

  • J Canseco

    The trade and resulting events demonstrate Nellie’s takeover as GM. When Mullin had power the trade put together an exciting team. Nelson then took over Mullin’s place of power and slowly began alienating the key players. Now they’re left with “a bunch of guys” with no real vision behind the roster.

  • Even if we’d never gotten the once in a lifetime We Believe experience, this trade would have been addition by subtraction.

    No team featuring Murphy and Dunleavy will ever do anything of note, let alone be worth watching.

  • fb

    no question that it was worth it. dunleavy and murphy were done at golden state and contracts that were too big to justify. jackson and harrington had a brief but exciting run for a couple of seasons. sometimes, that’s the best you can do.

  • Prvis short

    Murphy was a good player. Why everyone has to group him with Dunlevey is beyond me. Murphy averaged a double double year after year. The last year he was tired of the Dubs constant problems. He is a consistent pro. Mike was a bad draft choice and still is not starting material. We had to trade Murphy to get rid of Mike. It was a good trade for the short run.

  • Mike in Atl


    Thats a no brainer….

    The fact that the deal appears to be a wash now underscores how miserably Warriors management (not Mully) is. Mully pulls off the trade that puts us on the map, then Rowell refuses to pay B.D when he has an out clause, we ship Al harrington for an undersized two guard we don’t need (might actaully be mullys fault), and trade SJ to the worse team in basketball as a punishment for making Rowell look silly by paying him and then immediately demanding a trade but get nothing of value in return.

    Warriors management couldn’t even a 7-11 properly…

  • Anybody BUT Feltbot

    Dunleavy has spent a lot of time on the bench because of the knee. Murphy has been the same as he was here, a guy who gets a double double but has zero impact on a game. The W’s broke a playoff drought (has Indiana been to the playoffs since the trade)and created a lot of excitement around here. Sure we’ve had some ups and downs but at least it’s been interesting. The Pacers have had zero excitement since Reggie Miller retired. I got to go with the Dubs having the better end of that deal.

  • PhillyJ

    Not worth it. Dunleavy and Murphy have turned out to be valuable for their team while Harrington and Jackson are out–we didn’t get equal value for the trades. Bell and Vlad are not sufficient for what we gave up. For the short term a couple of years ago, it was a good trade, now it stinks.

  • ALsMouthGuard

    Give me Murphy back and Pacers could take Biedrins.

  • kshak

    In the long term, neither team really won. Dunleavy and Murphy have hit their own ceiling (in terms of potential). They’re not going to do anything else for the Pacers except a playoff berth. That’s it. I think for 2 years, it seemed the Warriors got the best out of it, but now it looks like neither team really benefited anything. That’s my opinion. I mean, who really has the belief that Duckleavy and Murphy can get to the playoffs and make a 2nd round appearance. Nobody. It’s hard for them to make a playoff berth anyways.

    As for our Warriors..can’t really comment on it. Our Management is the greatest in the league without competition.

  • a little frustration sensation

    it was worth it. harington and jack needed baron, jason and matt. i wish that group was never torn apart. we could have still gone young and have some of the young talent we have now, but the transition wouldn’t have been so abrupt.

  • Optimis Prime

    2+ Years later…still a no brainer.

  • RCG

    It was definitely worth it. I can’t imagine watching that wretched W’s team with Dunmurphy compared to We Believe. You still have to compare Dunmurphy to Harrington/Jackson and we won the trade hands down. As for what the W’s FO management did with Al and Jack in subsequent trades…that’s another matter. Excrement. But Bell is worth something if he comes back.

  • Leftshot

    “the Pacers have solid veterans to bank on (at least when Dunleavy’s healthy)…and they appear to be closer to turning things around”

    Do you see the contradictions in your own statements?!

    Closer to turning things around when what they have are a team of veterans? Where is the upside there?

    “at least when Dunleavy’s healthy”? But he hasn’t been healthy. That’s like making the case that the Warriors got the better deal ‘until Jax blew up’ or up until Harrington went sideways. You’ve got to deal with reality dude.

    Speaking of reality. With Dunleavy and Murphy’s bad contracts the Warriors wouldn’t have had the cap room to sign Ellis, or Biedrins or both. But you didn’t factor that in either.

  • Damon

    Murphleavy was a dead end. Yes, I’d do the trade all over again, and it was well worth it. We got better when they left, the Pacers got worse when they got there.
    Case was closed with the playoff run.

  • Mountain Jim

    The trade was right. Everything that went wrong after that has no roots in the trade, but in the front office. End of story.

  • sincewilt

    The Ws got the better of the trade, better players, but mismanaged them horribly. There wasno reason notto use Harrington at his natural position (3) and use Jackson as a swingman. Then the stupid Nelson stuff w/Harrington and the stupid office stuff with Jackson’s contract/letting BD go etc led the Ws to squander it.

  • Mike

    Even though the Warriors have bungled things since, the cap room they have is still better than having Dunleavey and Murphy and their long term deals. That assumes they end up giving that money to a better player, which, of course is doubtful.

  • Mike W

    Without Jax’s ridiculous extension, the deal was a talent upgrade (particularly for Nellie-ball) and a financial windfall for the Warriors. The day of the deal, I recall telling a few friends the relative cap-friendliness of Jax and AH’s contracts made it a steal. Their play during the We Believe run was just a bonus…

  • Guero

    Jose C had it right at #11. That trade has Nelson move written all over it, and at the time it looked the beginning of something. It was = the beginning of the end, as Nelson now tears apart another franchise. Seems to be his bigger passion (than winning, cigars, or scotch) = playing with a roster as if it were his fantasy team with no regard to the future beyond next week. This team is a mess. It’s NOT one PF away from winning. Cohan must sell!!!

  • Mullin

    The BIG difference for the “We Believe” year was Baron Davis!!!
    Not Jackson, and definitely Not Harrington.
    The Warriors beat Dallas during that season before the trade; they had Dallas’s number that year.
    Dunleavy was a great passer, but he didn’t pull the trigger on shots enough; maybe Nelson messed him up too!