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The Bobcats Trade – Goodbye, Gerald and Nazr

You’ve heard about it by now – The Bobcats have traded the final original Bobcat, Gerald Wallace, as well as Nazr Mohammed.  Gerald was sent to Portland for Joel Przybilla, Dante Cunningham, and Sean Marks plus 2 first round draft picks – New Orleans’ first rounder this year and Portland’s in 2013.  For Nazr, the Bobcats received D.J. White and Morris Peterson from the Oklahoma City Thunder.  You may notice that there are significantly more Bobcats coming in than departing:  The word is that Derrick Brown, Sherron Collins, Dominic McGuire, Sean Marks, and Morris Peterson will be waived by the Bobcats.  As Rick Bonnell points out in his blog today – No more Derrick vs Dominic debate – though probably not resolved in the manner the many fans of D-Brown were hoping.

So, where does this leave the Bobcats? Out of the playoffs – despite what MJ has to say about it:

(click to expand)

The Bobcats just lost their best player – and the best player coming back in return is…D.J. White?  Maybe.  Tough to tell because D.J. has seen so few minutes in the NBA because of injuries.  D.J. and Dante Cunningham are backups and the only ones I really expect to see in Charlotte after this year – the real win for the Bobcats here is financial.    Between Joel, Sean Marks, and Morris Peterson, the Bobcats received approximately $15 million in expiring contracts.  D.J. has $2 million due next year and Dante needs about $1 million for a qualifying offer. In Gerald, the Bobcats has 2 more years at $10.5 million per and Nazr was also expiring, due about $6.8 million this year.

Put all that together – and a couple of things jump out:

-The Bobcats are expecting something out of D.J. White or the Nazr trade doesn’t make sense – why give up an expiring for an expiring and player if you don’t expect something from the player

-The Bobcats salary savings next season is around $7.5 million – if they keep Dante; $8.5 mill if they don’t.  That number goes down slightly in 2012-13 as D.J.’s rookie scale contract goes up slightly.  And these numbers are excluding the draft picks due to the Bobcats.

-I wouldn’t expect either of the Bobcats draft picks received to be much better than a 20th overall – that’s where New Orleans currently stands in this year’s overall picture – and Portland still has a very talented roster that just got better and would get even better if Brandon Roy gets remotely healthy.

That’s all I have for now – I am going to look over the roster and try to guess at a potential rotation and then do a projection of the Bobcats performance the rest of the way.  I don’t expect it to be fun.

Links – ESPN’s coverage of the Gerald trade (with Nazr filler) and ShamSports.com for salary info