NBA Trades | Shaq to CavsCategory: Basketball
The Shaq to Cavs rumor that has been circulating since February has now been confirmed. This was after the trade sending Shaquille O’Neal to the Cleveland Cavaliers was finalized today. In return, the Phoenix Suns will get Ben Wallace, Sasha Pavlovic, the 46th pick in the 2009 NBA Draft and $500,000 in cash.
In a nut shell, the trade is very beneficial for the Cleveland Cavaliers. Shaq even at age 37 is definitely an upgrade over former 4-time Defensive Player of the Year Ben Wallace and his aging knees. Sasha Pavlovic is a bench-rider and was added as a filler. It means that they are giving up two worthless players for a solid Hall of Famer who can still give them 18 points and 8 rebounds every night. Aside from that, their core of players with Lebron James at the center is still intact. That’s nice.
On the other side of the deal, the Phoenix Suns is doing this for the money. Shaq will make $21 million in the final year of his contract and they want to unload it… badly. By getting Wallace and Pavlovic and possibly buying out their contracts, they can save around $10 million.
This trade is a culmination of a failed experiment by Suns executives.
When Shaq was traded to the Phoenix Suns for Shawn Marion and Marcus Banks in 2008, many believed that he will be the final piece of the puzzle in getting the city their first-ever NBA championship. But in a season of turmoil, the team failed to make the 2009 NBA playoffs. As a fan, I was left asking, “Quo vadis Phoenix Suns?” Apparently, this is the answer. They are now in a rebuilding mode. Amare Stoudemire is also rumored to be in the trading block.
I will not be surprised if that trade rumor will also happen one of these days.
UPDATE October 28, 2009: Will Shaq finally win a ring for The King?
Follow the Cavs during the 2009-010 NBA season and watch their games in online streaming format.