Gerald Green got his wish yesterday when he was traded to the Houston Rockets before the trade deadline. He was “traded home” to the Rockets for 24 year old guard Kirk Snyder, a 2010 second-round draft pick, and “cash considerations.” Snyder is in his fourth NBA season, with career averages of 6 points, 2 rebounds, and 1 assists per game. He is an alumnus of the University of Nevada, drafted by the Utah Jazz with the 16th overall pick in the 2004 draft. He has also appeared with the New Orleans Hornets before appearing in 9 games this season for the Rockets. He averaged 3.8 points and 1.3 rebounds in 9 minutes per game.
Gerald Green’s option was not picked up this past pre-season, which made it glaringly obvious to most of the fans that this would be his only season with the T-Wolves. Our VP of Basketball Operations Kevin McHale had this to say about Gerald’s game: “[GG] is probably the furthest away from readiness to play in NBA games of all of Minnesota’s young talent.” Green appeared in 29 games this season for the Wolves, averaging 5.1 points, 2.1 rebounds, and 1 assists in roughly 12 minutes per game. Coach Randy Wittman elaborated further about why he was traded yesterday: “We had kind of a logjam with the same type of player, with (Randy) Foye coming back into the mix; we didn’t have a lot of time there to play all those guys."
The trade was not a disappointment at all to the former Celtic and T-Wolf. In fact, Gerald Green was quite pleased: "It’s like a dream come true. Never in my life did I think this would happen. I am on cloud nine." This marks the second time he was traded in the past calendar year, but it was best for all parties involved.
Why the Wolves did the trade:
In January, Gerald Green “requested” a trade (through his agent.) Since the Wolves declined his option this pre-season, he was unrestricted and free to go wherever he wanted after this year was over. Thus, we were going to lose him anyways and still got something out of the trade. Namely, a two month look at Kirk Snyder and a future second round pick. Not bad, especially considering some of the moves this organization has made over the past 10 or so years. Low risk move by the Wolves, yet little to no reward. An ok B-
Why the Rockets did the trade:
There are several reasons as to why this trade makes sense for the Rockets. First off, they cut nearly $1 million dollars from their team salary. This also puts them under the Luxury Tax for this season, which is a very nice move in and of itself. Secondly, they are taking a very low risk chance with a “hometown” player that is known for having a massive amount of potential. Whether or not he will ever fully realize that potential is another story. From what I’ve seen, he can’t really play basketball at the professional level; at least not yet. He can dunk and shoot (if left wide open), but that is about it. Well… he can shoot. He’s never had a problem hoisting the rock, but making the shots is what ails him. Regardless, the Rockets got rid of a player that has only played 9 games while saving money and getting a raw prospect in return. You can’t really fault this move by the Houston Front Office. If Gerald doesn’t show them anything in the next two months, they simply let him walk away and owe nothing. Well, they owe the Wolves a 2010 second round pick, but the value in that pick will be very minimal at best. Before he was drafted, Gerald Green was being compared to Tracy McGrady… now it’s only fitting that they are both on the same team. A solid B+
As much as the truth hurts, the Wolves are pretty much going nowhere this season, and had basically nothing to lose in this trade. Considering that Gerald Green was going to be an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season, I guess it’s a bonus that we received anything back at all in return for him. He wasn’t playing, and it was quickly becoming apparent that he was not part of our future plans. Whether it was a good decision or not to decline his paltry contract extension, the trade itself was good. The Wolves get a 2 month lease on Kirk Snyder to see if he brings anything to the table, and another future second round pick. My hope is that they can eventually parlay this pick and a combination of other second round picks (or expiring contracts/etc) into a more useful asset (such as a pick higher in the draft… perhaps an additional first rounder?) I have no complaints about the trade itself, but the way Gerald Green was handled by our Front Office during his tenure in Minnesota is another story entirely.