Your Attention Please: None of the following transactions have taken place or even been rumored to take place. This is entirely my own personal Denver Nuggets fantasy team so enjoy the read and let me know if you think I am absolutely crazy or absolutely brilliant.
This is the last time I will mention my personal dream world plans for the Nuggets this offseason, but I figured I would throw together a final composite roster from the imagined trades that I would have made.
My Imaginary Trades
I am on board with the trade the Nuggets made with the Bulls for Sonny Weems, but I would have had the Bulls select Chris Douglas-Roberts instead.
I would have traded Marcus Camby, Chucky Atkins and the Nuggets 20th pick in the 2008 draft to the Knicks for the sixth pick and Eddy Curry’s contract. With the sixth pick I would have drafted Jerryd Bayless.
The last, and biggest trade I would have made (and this one is out of left field the Douglas-Roberts deal actually happened for Weems, I ran the Camby trade by Posting and Toasting and it was approved by Knicks fans) is Allen Iverson to the Cleveland Cavaliers in exchange for Anderson Varejao, Wally Sczczerbiak’s shooting and $13 million expiring contract and the 19th pick which I would have used to draft, you guessed it, Mario Chalmers.
I would also sign J.R. Smith to a three year contract with a starting salary in the $6.5 million range and would have offered Eduardo Najera a three year, nine million dollar contract.
After completing those transactions I present to you the 2008-2009 Pickaxe and Roll Nuggets.
PG – Jerryd Bayless
SG – J.R. Smith
SF – Carmelo Anthony
PF – Kenyon Martin
C – Nene
PG – Mario Chalmers, Taurean Green
SG – Chris Douglas-Roberts
SF – Linas Kleiza, Wally Szczerbiak, Bobby Jones
C – Steven Hunter, Eddy Curry
The Pickaxe and Roll Nuggets would have a payroll of $86-$87 million which is a little higher than last year, and may be beyond what Stan Kronke would be willing to pay for a team without AI and Camby, but I think the future is much brighter with this group.
There are two negatives for this roster. First of all the back court is comprised entirely of first and second year players. Second of all we now have Eddy Curry’s terrible contract. There is no remedy for the first problem other than time, but I would try work on a buyout with Curry that would alleviate some of the burden on Kronke’s coffers. I doubt Curry would be happy being the third string center and he may welcome a chance to play somewhere else. Where that somewhere else is I have no idea, but that is not my problem.
What excites me about this group is it is a better shooting team and they would be better defensively than the team we had to watch last year. They can still play at a fast pace, but when they need stops they have a tremendous group of interior defenders in Martin, Nene, Varejao and Hunter.
Another benefit to this roster is the contracts for Kenyon Martin, Eddy Curry, J.R. Smith, and Eduardo Najera, totaling around $40 million, all come off the books in the summer of 2011. If something goes wrong we can start over with a core of Melo, Bayless, Varejao, Kleiza, Douglas-Roberts and Chalmers or trade an expiring contract or two.
Of course ultimately the success of this team would depend on the exact same thing that the actual real life Nuggets depend on, Melo deciding that winning and playing defense is every bit as important as making the All-Star team.