Dave D’Alessandro wasn’t kidding when he said a deal between the Nets and the Dallas Mavericks was imminent. Overnight, the Nets and Mavs agreed to swap Eduardo Najera and PF Kris Humphries, according to Yahoo’s Adrian Wojnarowski. The Nets also received Shawne Williams in the trade, who hasn’t played this season, and is expected to be bought out of his contract. To make room on the roster, the Nets will formally end the Sean Williams era, cutting the troubled F/C. Wojnarowski expects the deal to be formalized by the league on Monday morning.
Beat writer Al Iannazzone, picking up on the report, makes the deal sound a little more tentative, but agrees that it should all come together on Monday. Iannazzone also thinks the Nets could send a trade exception over to Dallas.
Let’s take a tale of the tape here regarding the two main pieces in this deal, Humphries and Najera. Humphries is going to add anywhere between $200K and $700K to the salary cap next season and is 10 years younger than Najera.
Humphries doesn’t get a lot of minutes in Dallas, but he’s fairly efficient when he plays. He’s currently averaging 17.2 points and 10.6 rebounds per 40 minutes, good for a Player Efficiency Rating of 15.25, which is slightly above average. According to his 82games profile, he takes about 54 percent of his shots close to the rim or at the rim, good for a 54 percent effective field goal percentage. His eFG is about 37 percent on his jump shots.
Here’s ESPN’s John Hollinger scouting report on Humphries, before the season started:
Humphries has two major weaknesses. First, he’s a selfish offensive player who forces shots. Even though he can score, he too often flings quick jumpers and breaks plays, especially when he catches in the high post area. He shoots the ball like it’s contagious, flicking it from in front of his face within nanoseconds of picking up his dribble. The result is usually a low liner into the front rim. He can finish and draw fouls around the basket and is an impressive offensive rebounder, but he doesn’t earn brownie points with the coaches when he lets it rip off the dribble from 15. Also, he needs to improve his foul shooting (58.5 percent career).
The other weakness is his defense. Humphries has a strong build but is undersized for a 4 at 6-foot-8, and his effort is inconsistent. He keeps gambling by trying to steal post entry passes instead of playing solid D behind his man, and with his quickness he should be a better pick-and-roll defender.
As for Najera, the man was never healthy enough in his tenure with the Nets to make an impact, only playing in 27 games last year and 13 this year. Many thought the Nets were insane for giving him a four-year deal before last year, and those critics were proven correct. Najera was supposed to bring leadership and toughness on the defensive end to the Nets, but did neither. When the Nets were showcasing him Tuesday night against the Bucks, he looked slow and out of shape, so we’ll see if he even plays with Dallas.
Sean Williams was probably an even bigger enigma. Swat looked like he had potential his rookie year, starting 29 games and averaging 5.6 points and 1.5 blocks. But he continually did things on and off the court to play himself out of the rotation. Last season, the Nets sent him down the the D-League where he was ejected from a game, and he was also arrested in Denver for throwing a monitor at a store clerk. The guy probably needs help in a venue away from basketball, and from one human to another, I hope he finds it.