Thursday, February 18, 2010

Salmons traded to Bucks for Kurt Thomas/Francisco Elson or Joe Alexander/Hakeem Warrick

By Sean Mackey

The Bulls made their first big move of the trade deadline late Wednesday evening by trading swingman John Salmons to the Milwaukee Bucks for either Kurt Thomas & Francisco Elson or Joe Alexander & Hakeem Warrick. Which ever deal the Bulls are dealt with, they'll be picking up expiring contracts and getting rid of a guy who had a player option that could have ruined the chances of signing a big name free agent this summer.

John Salmons was a great addition to the Bulls last season and was easily the biggest steal of the trade deadline last year. His ability to create his own shot and hit down a rather consistant 3 pointer was very helpful in the already famous 7 game series with Boston.

The Milwaukee deal also put all Tracy McGrady rumors to rest last night as Salmons was said to be one of the center pieces of a New York/Sacramento/Chicago three way deal. Tracy McGrady was later dealt along with Carl Landry & Joey Dorsey to the Kings for their star shooting guard Kevin Martin along with Kenny Thomas, Hilton Armstrong & Sergio Rodriguez. Landing Kevin Martin is HUGE for Houston. They got an all-star caliber player for a guy who wasn't even playing. Playing the waiting game paid off for the Rockets and they got a much better deal than what the Knicks or Bulls were offering.

The Cavs also made a decent 3 way trade earlier yesterday for forward Antwan Jamison. The trade sent Zydrunas Ilgauskas, a 2010 first-round draft pick and the rights to Emir Preldzic, who was selected in the second round of last year's draft to the Wizards for Jamison. The Clippers shipped off Al Thornton to the Wizards along with Sebastian Telfair to the Cavs and received Drew Gooden. Drew Gooden is expected to receive a buyout along with Ilgauskas who will most likely return to Cleveland.

In lesser calliber deals, recent dunk champion, Nate Robinson was shipped off from the Knicks to Boston for Eddie House. The deal gives the Boston Celtics a solid but undersized back up guard. In a rather uninspired deal, the Knicks traded Darko Milicic to the Minnesota Timberwolves for forward Brian Cardinal.

The trade deadline is at 3:00 p.m. today. Everyone's eyes will be on a possible Amare Stoudemire to Miami trade. It was said last night that Amare met with the team owner and is most likely to stay with the Suns the rest of the season but anything can happen if Miami decides to finally throw Michael Beasley in a deal. Look for the Bulls in a last ditch effort to try to trade Tyrus Thomas & Jannero Pargo (who has requested a trade) to the Knicks for Al Harrington. The Bulls lost a solid bench scorer in Salmons and his double digit points will be missed unless another scorer is brought in.

Also, completely overshadowed by the trade deadline last night was the Bulls/Knicks game. The Bulls won 115-109 after coming back from a 15 point deficit. The Knicks were given a chance to tie in the last 20 seconds of the game but came up empty 3 times in a row from downtown instead of going for the easy 2 and fouling. Rose finished the game with 27 points and 6 assists. Taj Gibson had 14 points & 16 rebounds and Deng quietly had a solid game with 23 points and 7 rebounds. Al Harrington had 27 points for New York.