By Devin Jones
Thursday, Feb. 6, saw the 2020 NBA trade deadline pass. Many teams made moves, some of which have the potential to shift the power dynamic in the league.
The biggest trade of this season was between the Golden State Warriors and the Minnesota Timberwolves. The teams swapped fringe-all star players, with the Warriors giving up D’Angelo Russell for Andrew Wiggins.
The Detroit Pistons also seem to be taking a new approach to their team, seemingly giving up on their playoff hopes in order to play for the future. This was made clear by their decisions on Thursday: trading their all-star center André Drummond for what is essentially pennies on the dollar to the Cleveland Cavaliers. Detroit received guard Brandon Knight, forward John Henson, and a second round draft pick. They are now left with two solid veterans in a resurgent Derrick Rose and an injury-prone Blake Griffin. They also have a rookie who seems to be a solid piece in Sekou Doumbouya.
The Houston Rockets are taking an approach toward their roster that hasn’t been seen since the 1960s by trading away any center that they had in their rotation in favor of playing forwards and guards. Center Clint Capela was moved in a four-team deal that also saw a high-quality wing player in Robert Covington make his way to Houston.
In what was an immediately heavily criticized trade, the Rockets proved that their new “small ball” line-up can defeat bigger teams by dismantling the pre-season title favorites Los Angeles Lakers. Even with this win, the Lakers will be the Rocket’s biggest obstacles in a best of seven series during the playoffs.
After some bickering from the young Memphis Grizzlies core that he flat out refused to play with, former NBA Finals MVP Andre Igoudala was traded from the Grizzlies to the Miami Heat. This trade gives a young Miami team what they are in desperate need of: wing defense and veteran presence.