2015 NBA Trade Deadline Recap

A breakdown of all 11 deals that went down before the NBA’s crazy trade deadline today.

Alan Draper profile picture
Sports Editor
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What was supposed to be a quiet NBA trade deadline turned out to be one of the most hectic in league history, especially in the final minutes. In total, a record-setting 37 players were moved, not including all of the draft picks that were exchanged as well. It was a dizzying, confusing day, but now that the dust has settled we’re able to analyze all 11 trades from the 2015 trade deadline to remember for ages:

Denver Nuggets Receive: Will Barton, Victor Claver, Thomas Robinson, POR pick (protected), 2nd round pick
Portland Trail Blazers Receive: Arron Afflalo, Alonzo Gee

Analysis: The Nuggets were looking to clean house a little bit today, without much concern about whether they were getting the better side of the deal. Afflalo didn’t live up to expectations in his return to Denver, and with the fit being so poor, they probably were expecting to lose him in free agency anyway. Barton is a young player with an immense amount of talent who hasn’t really gotten the chance to showcase his abilities yet. Perhaps he’ll get that chance in Denver. Meanwhile, Robinson and Claver will help add some depth to their frontline. Afflalo is a great get for Portland and potentially a fine replacement for Wesley Matthews if he gets a monster offer in free agency. Gee, who has been all over the place the last year, should benefit from the stability Portland provides and add some needed depth behind Nicolas Batum.

Sacramento Kings Receive: Andre Miller
Washington Wizards Receive: Ramon Sessions

Analysis: A George Karl favorite in Miller gets to reunite with him in Sacramento, at the very cheap price of Ramon Sessions, who they were eager to deal. Sessions should fit in much better in Washington behind John Wall, while Miller will keep the Kings’ two shot-hungry stars in DeMarcus Cousins and Rudy Gay very happy with his playmaking ability.

Brooklyn Nets Receive: Thaddeus Young
Minnesota Timberwolves Receive: Kevin Garnett

Analysis: This trade possibility started to build strength early Thursday before becoming official just before the deadline thanks to Garnett waiving his no-trade clause. It’s only fitting for him to finish his career in Minnesota, where he started it and had a Hall of Fame worthy run. The end may not be this year, though, as the Timberwolves reportedly want to extend his contract and have him serve as the leader for the young faces of the franchise to learn from. Young is a steal for the Nets who should be able to come in and make a major impact immediately in a way that Garnett simply cannot at this stage of his career.

Denver Nuggets Receive: Draft rights to Cenk Akyol
Philadelphia 76ers Receive: JaVale McGee, a 2015 first-round pick (from the Oklahoma City Thunder, top-18 protected) and the draft rights to Chukwudiebere Maduabum.

Analysis: The 76ers, as with every veteran they acquire, are expected to buyout McGee, who will be a very nice late-season pickup for whoever acquires him, even if it’s not until next season that he makes a difference. He quickly fell out of favor in Denver due to injuries and the change at head coach, but is still one of the league’s most athletically gifted centers. He’ll be picked up in short order. The 76ers will throw the pick on top of their current stockpile that they hope will someday help them put together a contending team. Akyol will likely never see a day in Denver and was included solely to make the trade work under the CBA. Same goes for Maduabum.

Miami HEAT Receive: Goran Dragic, Zoran Dragic
New Orleans Pelicans Receive: Norris Cole, Justin Hamilton, Shawne Williams
Phoenix Suns Receive: Danny Granger, John Salmons, two future first-round picks

Analysis: Despite Robert Sarver’s late claim that he would not trade Dragic, a clear leverage tactic, the Suns ended up trading the Dragic brothers together for a package that was laughable until we saw what was to follow. The first round picks are nice, but with them being owed so far down the line, it was hard to consider them great value considering how much the loss of Dragic hurt them. For Miami, though, it’s a great deal that helps them remain relevant in the Eastern Conference. Dragic is a major upgrade at one of their weaker positions. New Orleans has long had eyes for Cole, who could be their starter until Jrue Holiday returns from injury. Salmons, Hamilton, Williams and Granger are more likely to be bought out than see time with the respective teams they landed with.

Houston Rockets Receive: K.J. McDaniels
Philadelphia 76ers Receive: Isaiah Canaan, 2nd round pick

Analysis: A true head scratcher by the 76ers, unless of course Canaan proves to be more than a D-League stud while with them. McDaniels was a true steal for them and one of the most productive players in this year’s rookie class. He’s going to be looking for a hefty pay raise this summer, but it’s not like they couldn’t afford it, especially with all the money they’ve paid veterans not to play for them. McDaniels will find playing time much hard to come by in Houston, but should get a chance to earn a role. Regardless, he should enjoy being on a team that is actually playing for something this year, rather than whatever it is the 76ers are trying to do.

Houston Rockets Receive: Pablo Prigioni
New York Knicks Receive: Alexey Shved and two future second-round picks

Analysis: Houston is in win-now mode and after failing to acquire Rajon Rondo and Goran Dragic, settled for the veteran Prigioni to provide a boost to their backup point guard position. He should fare much better in Houston given the improved cast of options around him. Shved will get a chance to play for the Knicks, who were probably thrilled to add to two second-round picks to their shallow pool of future draft selections.

Boston Celtics Receive: Luigi Datome, Jonas Jerebko
Detroit Pistons Receive: Tayshaun Prince

Analysis: Boston didn’t want to just lose Prince for nothing, and they succeeded in extracting some value for them in two guys who they can afford to give some chances to in Datome and Jerebko to during this rebuilding season. Prince may slide into the same starting small forward position he had when he left thanks to the trade of Kyle Singler afterwards. The young Pistons will benefit from his leadership and experience.

Detroit Pistons Receive: Reggie Jackson
Oklahoma City Thunder Receive: D.J. Augustin, Enes Kanter, Steve Novak, Kyle Singler
Utah Jazz Receive: Grant Jerrett, Kendrick Perkins, a future first-round pick and a future second-round pick.

Analysis: This trade completely revamped and improved the Thunder’s bench and potentially gave them their starting center of the future, depending on how Kanter fits in and whether they can re-sign him this offseason. They’ll have the leg up on doing so thanks to him being a restricted free agent with a qualifying offer. It’s a major win for them, especially considering Jackson’s minimized impact and poor attitude. Jackson is going to an ideal situation that could turn into his long-term home if he’s able to lead them to the playoffs. He’s surrounded by great weapons and will be the unquestioned starting point guard for the rest of the season. Things could get messy when Brandon Jennings returns, but that’s a long time away. Jerrett is a sharp-shooting big man who could be a nice pairing with Derrick Favors and/or Rudy Gobert. Perkins will never don a Jazz uniform and is reportedly going to land with either the Los Angeles Clippers, Cleveland Cavaliers, Dallas Mavericks or Chicago Bulls after he clears waivers.

Boston Celtics Receive: Isaiah Thomas
Phoenix Suns Receive: Marcus Thornton, CLE pick

Analysis: The Celtics had eyes for Thomas since free agency, but it’ll be interesting to see how they integrate him in with their guard-heavy lineup. His acquisition is especially curious when you take into account that Marcus Smart is supposed to be their point guard of the future. Thomas is only going to take time away from him, or force him to play off of the ball. Thornton’s known for his scoring ability and should be able to see the court more in Phoenix than he was in Boston. It’s surprising that Phoenix was able to extract a pick from them given Boston Celtics president Danny Ainge’s infatuation with them.

Milwaukee Bucks Receive: Michael Carter-Williams, Tyler Ennis, Miles Plumlee
Philadelphia 76ers Receive: Los Angeles Lakers 2015 first-round pick (Top-five protected)
Phoenix Suns Receive: Brandon Knight and Kendall Marshall.

Analysis: This was the blockbuster nobody expected. We’ve heard rumblings that the 76ers were open to trading the reigning Rookie of the Year, but only expected it to be in a deal that made them better, not set their rebuilding process back even further. Sure, if the Lakers fall out of the top five they get another high lottery pick, but is that player going to be better than Carter-Williams? Will they just ship that player off too for another pick when he becomes worth one? This move is one of the more difficult ones in the Sam Hinkie era to comprehend, unless you just completely don’t believe in Michael Carter-Williams and think his stats are inflated from being one of the few certifiable NBA players on the 76ers’ roster the last year and a half. For Phoenix, this trade is a season saver. Between Thomas and Dragic, both relationships were damaged too much to hold onto them. To walk away with two first round picks, some veterans worth auditioning and Knight – a potentially dynamic partner for Eric Bledsoe in the backcourt – is the best-case scenario in an ugly situation. Marshall is out for the year with a torn ACL and will be bought out. Milwaukee is just as big of a winner here as the Suns are; Carter-Williams should thrive under head coach Jason Kidd. He also joins an already stellar young core that features Giannis Antetokounmpo, Jabari Parker and John Henson. They may miss Knight in the short-term, but long-term Carter-Williams has more potential, and isn’t due for the monster pay day that Knight was this summer. Ennis and Plumlee are both young, nice additions to their second unit. Plumlee may even vie for the starting center position.


Alan is an experienced writer of online betting and casino guides. He is one of the main editors of Basketballinsiders.

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