Phila GM provides 'commentary' on recent trade activity
- By Kris Burley, Day 101, 2023
PHILADELPHIA - The Reverend KB addressed the packed press conference in Process Arena earlier today. Consistent with his past behaviour, he refused to entertain questions from the audience and proceeded to deliver his sermon from a collection of scrap pieces of paper.
Given the amount of change over the past few days, I thought it was worth sitting down to address the fans on what this means for the team. First of all, I want to address the trade of JaDante Hicks as this has disappointed some fans and impacted the team. This young man has been outstanding for us over the past 3 years. When we picked him with the 9th pick of the 2021 draft, it was largely derided across the league. However, he demonstrated his worth and was rewarded by being selected into the All Defensive 1st team in 2022, in only his second season. Whilst his defensive abilities have now been acknowledged, he also provided good offensive support to Weaver and has been an essential part of our improvements over the past 2 seasons. We wish Hicks the best and luck with the Mustangs.
Whilst Hicks has been fantastic, 2023 Hicks is not going to be able to provide enough support to Weaver to make a deeper playoff run this season. One of the biggest issues we've had is a legitimate second star on the team. Obra and Dawkins are a great defensive duo but aren't consistently able to support weaver on the offensive end. Enter Tezale Craig. The man has 2 championships under his belt and one of the best offensive players in the league.
Some were surprised that the Warriors were interested in Craig given his entire career has been played at the 3. Whilst Weaver has primarily played at the SF position, he has the flexibility to play down to PG and has spent time this season covering Hicks in the SG position during injury. The additional benefit of Craig being on the team is that Weaver now has a mentor for the first time in his career. Whilst the absence of a mentor in his first 3 seasons has not impacted his development, this should help cement Weavers position as the new face of the JBL in the coming years.
In addition to dealing the Lumberjacks 2024 1st round and our 2027 2nd round, salary dumping was required. Some perceived the release of Ubuntu and Dragon as being a high price to pay for Craig, however both players were inconsequential to our team. Ubuntu was extremely disappointing, averaging 5/4/2 in 18mpg and taking away opportunities from Isaac Foster. Dragon with limited playing time was averaging 3/1/0 in 6mpg. Both players were on expiring contracts with no plans to offer contracts in the 2024 FA period.
Additionally we have made a minor trade today, moving Kellon 'King of the midget centres' Aldridge to the OKC Barons for their 2025 2nd round pick. We are proud to have completed our first trade with a net gain in picks.
With Weaver, Craig and Dawkins locked up until 2025 we feel this build is our best chance at winning at title.