What Price Cap Room?
For some time now, many of us here at Knickerblogger.net have felt that the Houston Rockets General Manager, Daryl Morey, would never acquire Jared Jeffries in a deal for TMCEC (Tracy McGrady’s Corpse and his Expiring Contract), because Morey is considered to be one of the smartest GMs out there, and what smart GM would ever trade for Jared Jeffries, who is due to make almost $7 million next year.
Well, on Monday, we may have learned what a guy like Morey wants in exchange for the Knicks getting rid of Jeffries’ contract. And now the question becomes – is the very high cost worth it?
Adrian Wojnarowski and Marc J. Spears at Yahoo! Sports are reporting that the basic framework of a deal exists that is nearing completion between the Knicks and the Rockets that would involve the Knicks sending Jared Jeffries, 2009 #8 pick Jordan Hill, either Al Harrington or Larry Hughes plus (and here’s the kicker) the right to swap 2011 first round picks, an unprotected 2012 first round pick and possibly a 2010 second round pick. In return, the Knicks would received TMCEC and filler (Joey Dorsey and Brian Cook if is Larry Hughes going to Houston and Joey Dorsey if it is Al Harrington going to Houston).
All three Rockets players likely would be renounced this offseason after the deal is completed (Cook and McGrady are free agents, while the Knicks would own a team option for Dorsey for slightly less than a million).
At that point, the Knicks would have only $17,782,904 in committed salaries for the 2010-11 season (plus a little under $4 million in cap holds).
Even if the cap comes in at, say, $53 million, the Knicks would have slightly less than $32 million to spend on free agents.
So, is that $32 million (possibly more) worth giving up your 2009 first round pick, your 2012 first round pick, plus swapping your 2011 first round pick (and possibly also a 2010 second round pick)?
I think I’d personally lean towards yes, but it’s about as rough of a trade as I can imagine, so Morey deserves a lot of credit for driving an extremely hard bargain, knowing that the Knicks are so desperate for that cap room that they’d give him pretty much anything he wanted.
If the Knicks go out and sign Lebron James and another MAX player like Wade or Bosh (or hell, just Lebron James and other good free agents like David Lee and, I dunno, Marcus Camby), then this trade is clearly a winner. But what are the odds of the Knicks getting the top free agents out there?
The local sportswriters are showering Walsh with praise over the possible deal, suggesting he should get Executive of the Year if the trade goes through, but be sure to ignore those fellows. Not that they are dumb or anything, but when your whole position for months (like Marc Berman) is that there is absolutely no chance that the Knicks could ever trade Jared Jeffries, then of course you’re going to go overboard for a trade that involves trading him.
If you’ve been looking at it from the perspective most of us have been looking at it for awhile (that it is unlikely but not impossible, depending on what sweeteners you throw into the deal), then you wouldn’t be nearly as hyperbolic about the trade.
One thing is for sure – if this trade goes down, we’ll begin to see the Knicks brought up a lot more in national discussions about the 2010 offseason, but that’s just about the only truly tangible thing I can say about this trade – it once again gets the Knicks into the 2010 offseason playing field – is that worth what they’re possibly giving up?
ETA: I adjusted the cap room for the cap holds.