With Alex Kennedy bringing up the Knicks are potentially interested in acquiring Jared Dudley, let’s take a look if there is a deal that makes sense for both teams.
First thing to remember is this trade has to work from both teams’ perspectives. It’s well known the Suns were seriously interested in taking Iman Shumpert in the 2011 NBA Draft, but decided to go with Markieff Morris.
The Suns aren’t going to want to add any money on their cap in the near future. Phoenix is looking to keep cap space open to be able to take on extra money in trades or for free agency. If they are trading Jared Dudley, who is arguably their best asset, unless it’s apart of a bigger package that reels in a number one scoring option, their not clogging up their cap.
According to hoopshype.com, Dudley is signed at $4,250,000 through 2014-2015 and he has a player option at that price for 2015-2016. That’s excellent value — it’s one of the better non-rookie contracts in the NBA.
The trade that makes the most sense from both perspectives is Shumpert, Chris Copeland and Kurt Thomas for Jared Dudley. If I were the Knicks I would try to squeeze some sort of 1st round pick out of Phoenix, too. I really doubt with the position the Suns are in they give their pick this year or next unprotected. It’s probably something New York would end up with in the 2015 Draft, which is perfectly fine. Knicks should start the negotiations demanding an unprotected 13th or 14 first rounder to see how much they actually want Shumpert.
Thomas and Copeland both come off the books after this season so Phoenix wouldn’t add any significant future salary and they would have Shump at $1,797,600 next year and $2,761,113 the year after.
From the Knicks side of things it’s asking if what Dudley brings to the table currently is worth giving up on the unknown of Shumpert.
Between the hair, rapping and athleticism, New York fans have built a connection to Shump that seems like it’s hard to let go of, but I can’t deal with that stuff when looking at potential trades.
In seven games and 64 minutes, Ray Felton, Jason Kidd, Iman Shumpert and Carmelo Anthony and Tyson Chandler have an ORtg of 92.4 and DRtg of 105.1.
Granted the other highest used Shump line up with Tyson, Melo, Ray and J.R. Smith has an ORtg of 115.6 and DRtg of 109.6. That group has only played 33 minutes together.
Those numbers aren’t a be all end all — Iman is still recovering from offseason knee surgery, and isn’t playing at the level he was pre injury, in the 10 games has participated in.
I acknowledge trading him is a risk to an extent, but when looking at Shump you have to think about what his ceiling is. I don’t think its too hard to say he will never reach the level of James Harden or Paul George, the two preeminent shooting guards when talking about the position going forward. Other young two’s I would put ahead of Shump include Klay Thompson, Eric Gordon, OJ Mayo plus potentially Terrence Ross., Jeremy Lamb or Jimmy Butler.
That is not an untouchable piece for a player who could fit in seamlessly and make the Knicks better this season. Dudley knows what he is good at, does it, and won’t try to be what he’s not.
Dudley is proficient from three-point range, both above the break and in the corner. He is a low usage player and when he does have the ball in his hands doesn’t turn it over. The majority of his scoring is done in spot up situations or working off screens. Dudley isn’t Rip Hamilton, but he can make a wing player work chasing him around. All of that combined leads to 83.7% of his baskets being assisted on this year according to hoopdata.com
Defensively, Dudley doesn’t have Shumpert’s athleticism, but he is sound guarding both shooting guards and small forwards. According to 82games.com, the PER of opposing players is slightly above 15, which is right at the league average.
Another positive to acquiring Dudley would be a familiarity with the system. When Steve Nash was with the Suns he was accustomed to playing in a spread pick and roll system.
In 2009-2010 Dudley was apart of line-ups with Stoudemire that were successful. One New York could imitate would be the Frye, Stoudemire, Dudley, Richardson and Nash five that was +17.3 per 100 possessions according to basketball-reference.com — Felton or Prigs at PG, with J.R Smith in the Richardson role, Dudley, Amar’e and Rasheed Wallace as Channing Frye. Functionally that Knicks five could do a lot of the same things that Suns group did.
This summer, or even two weeks ago, I don’t think I could have been sold on a trade based on the principles of Iman Shumpert and Jared Dudley.
Looking at where the Knicks are as a team and what they are trying to accomplish Dudley is better suited to help than Shumpert.
While the trade off is the risk of what Shump becomes, it’s not like having Dudley for under $5 million for at least two years after this one is leaving you empty handed.
This deal is something general manager Glen Grunwald needs to seriously look into.