In an ESPN Insider post today, Kevin Pelton goes over “sell-high” trade targets, a.k.a. players who are “unlikely to keep up their current level of play.” With the likes of ex-Nets guard Vince Carter and Hawks shooting specialist Kyle Korver, Nets All-Star center Brook Lopez makes the list.
Pelton writes that Lopez may have “boosted his trade value more than anyone else in the league over the last 12 months,” considering that at this point last year the Nets seven footer was making a comeback from a foot injury that would last just five games. In addition to his improved health, Brook has delivered on the promise he showed in his first three seasons in Jersey, as well as adding tougher defense to his offensive arsenal.
Pelton goes on to say that the only way this elevated trade value would matter would be if the Lakers were willing to part with Dwight Howard, but notes that Lopez’s stellar play “means the Nets wouldn’t necessarily say yes to a Howard offer.”
The ESPN Insider writer proposes a Borough barter, moving Amar’e Stoudemire’s seemingly untradeable contract to Brooklyn in exchange for Kris Humphries, Mirza Teletovic and MarShon Brooks. Citing the Nets’ bottomless pockets and “championship-obsessed” owner Mikhail Prokhorov, Pelton says the Nets would make the deal once they realize they aren’t getting Josh Smith.
Immediately after proposing the trade, he notes the Knicks wouldn’t be on board, since Hump doesn’t fill the hole at backup center left by Stoudemire’s departure and Knicks owner James Dolan “isn’t exactly pinching pennies himself.”