Let’s just start this out with the needed disclaimer — this all starts because of speculation from a newspaper columnist, an idea that got picked up and ran with all over the Web Wednesday morning. (Tell me again how bloggers start all the rumors?) Understand it all started with a guess that may be off the mark. So you cannot take enough salt with this rumor.
Okay, everyone understand? Good.
San Jose Mercury News columnist Tim Kawakami has spoken with Jerry West, looked at the Golden State roster and came to this conclusion:
And with West on board as management’s newest, sharpest voice, it seems likely that West already has begun to survey trade options for Ellis.
“I’ve seen teams trade players that score tons of points and people say, ‘How in the world can you trade that player?’ ” West said last week. “Because he might score tons of points and the team doesn’t win. When I look at (the Warriors), obviously they need more size.”
Of course, West was not definitively referring to Ellis when he spoke those words, and throughout the conversation he added that he admired Ellis’ toughness and inventive scoring ability.
But if West is instantly the team’s most influential voice in personnel moves, which I believe he is, and if he’s going to make a major move, which everybody in the NBA expects “… whom else but Ellis could he trade?
Well, Stephen Curry comes to mind. But if owner Joe Lacob is serious about a move to a more defensive mindset, the Warriors do have to consider breaking up this undersized backcourt that can’t defend well. Ellis is one of the better scorers in the game right now and there would be real value if the Warriors wanted to move him.
But where? Kawakami spoke to sources and said:
Chicago, which might have been a big-time perimeter scorer away from pushing Miami to the brink in the Eastern Conference finals. Would the Bulls think about Luol Deng for Ellis? Could the Warriors sweeten that offer?
And Memphis, West’s old team, which has Rudy Gay at a huge salary and which offered O.J. Mayo for Ellis in the recent past.
Chicago would be a disaster for the Bulls. They would create what Golden State already has — an undersized backcourt that can’t defend. On offense it might be worse as Ellis not a guy who works off the ball but needs to have it in his hands to create. So he would take possessions away from league MVP Derrick Rose. They would fight over the ball. That would just be a mess, and Deng is too high a price by far.
Now Mayo for Ellis, that makes a little more sense. And the sides have at least discussed it on some level in the past. The question becomes do the small market Grizzlies want to take on three years, $33 million in Ellis before they see what the new Collective Bargaining Agreement looks like?
It’s all a lot of speculation. Although to me the idea of moving some part of the Golden State back court to get more size makes sense.