Well, Joe Dumars promises a shakeup and he has done that. Only a few games into the 2008-2009 NBA Season, the Pistons have made a blockbuster. The Pistons have traded Chauncey Billups, Antonio McDyess, and little used Cheikh Samb to Denver for Allen Iverson. This trade raises a lot of eyebrows. Let's weigh out the good and bad for each team.
Good: They get a bonafide scorer, albeit on his last legs. They have a better team around Iverson than Iverson had when he took the Sixers all the way to the Finals under Larry Brown. The Pistons get this jump started early enough in the year that by the end of the year this team should mesh together and be pretty formidable in the East. With a defense behind him, AI may creep up that leader board in steals. AI is always a draw and he will be loved by the fans of Detroit as he was by the Philly fans. Maybe just maybe Dumars is positioning himself to bring in LeBron in a few years. AI's contract is $22M and it comes off the books at the end of the year.
Bad: They get a bonafide scorer, albeit on his last legs. AI has already come into this season a little banged up, but he is playing well so far. AI has never enjoyed playing team defense and may hurt the Pistons from that standpoint. How is he going to mesh with Rasheed, Tayshaun, and Rip? AI is a volume shooter/scorer, so how does this play with the team concept that the Pistons have built over the years.
Good: Finally the Nuggets have a true point guard that can get Melo the ball when and where he needs it. Someone who won't be concentrating on getting 'theirs'. This true point guard will also allow the Nuggets bigs to finally show what they can do without having to depend on getting their points from the scraps that AI, Melo, JR Smith, and Kleiza were throwing up. The Nuggets also get someone who can do more than spell defense. Maybe Billups' calming play and leadership can turn this team around. The best part is the Nuggets have someone who can get someone else a shot or make a clutch shot in a big game.
Bad: The Nuggets get another personality to go along with the several that they have. McDyess will add to the already deep lineup of bigs, but will he show up (he only wants to play for a Championship and we know the Nuggets don't qualify)?
This is a calculated move by both teams. The Nuggets , in my opinion, have scorers and need a good point guard to get them the ball. They also get an extra big with Antonio McDyess (and Cheikh Samb). Detroit, well Dumars, gets to say that he did what he said he would do with the shakeup and he gets to clear some salary cap space if/when they let AI walk. The winner in this deal would have to be the Nuggets, but not by a large amount. We'll see how this works.
Who got the better deal, the Nuggets or the Pistons? Are you happy that AI is out of Denver?