The Atlanta Hawks have reportedly agreed to send all-star guard Joe Johnson to the Brooklyn Nets.
The Nets will in turn send Jordan Williams, Johan Petro, Jordan Farmar, Anthony Morrow and DeShawn Stevenson. The Hawks will also get the Nets 2013 lottery-protected first-round pick that they acquired from the Houston Rockets.
Since DeShawn Stevenson is a free-agent, he will go to Atlanta in a sign-and-trade.
This deal cannot become official until July 11th.
Grade For Atlanta Hawks: A
By getting rid of Joe Johnson’s HUGE contract (4 years, $90 million left), the Atlanta Hawks now have some major flexibility when it comes to signing potential free-agents.
Dwight Howard anyone? Perhaps the Hawks could recruit “Superman” to come play for his hometown team next season.
The addition of Williams, Petro, Farmar, Morrow and Stevenson gives the Hawks considerable depth, but the expiring deals of Petro/Farmar/Morrow makes this deal look even better.
I’m still kind of amazed the Hawks found someone to take on that insane contract. This was an overall great deal for the Atlanta Hawks organization. The franchise was unable to go after free-agents in the past because of Johnson and the money he was making.
With Joe out the door, the Hawks can now focus on building a contender around Josh Smith and Al Horford.
Is Danny Ferry an early favourite for GM of the year? Hows that for an immediate impact?
Grade for Brooklyn Nets: C -
Joe Johnson? Is he the guy to put the Nets over the top?
This trade all but kills the chances of Dwight Howard coming to the Nets. Howard would have certainly kept Deron Williams in Brooklyn. It’s hard to say whether the presence of Johnson will be enough to keep Deron in town or not.
Johnson will be making $25 million dollars when he is 35 years old. He has the worst contract in all of basketball, but the Nets clearly saw no harm in bringing him on board.
The 6x NBA all-star averaged 18.8 points and 3.9 assists during the regular season. He’s a tremendous offensive player, but the buck stops there. In fact, the Nets may have been better off continuing to develop first-year player MarShon Brooks rather than bringing on a player who could perhaps stunt his growth.
If point guard Deron Williams resigns with Brooklyn, the team will then have $50 million locked into 3 players heading into next season (Deron, Johnson, Gerald Wallace). Once they fill up the roster, the team will be over the salary cap.
A core of Williams, Johnson, Wallace, Kris Humphries and Brook Lopez would improve the Nets chances in the East, but would that be enough to compete with the Heat, Bulls, Pacers and Celtics?
The only thing that salvages this trade is the fact that the Nets get to keep their first round pick as well as MarShon Brooks.
Call me a Joe Johnson hater, but I don’t see how he makes the Brooklyn Nets a championship contender.
*This deal is contingent on Deron Williams resigning with Brooklyn.
Christopher Walder is a sports blogger and lead editor for Sir Charles in Charge. You may follow him on Twitter @WalderSports