Ok, I'll admit, I started imbibing at halftime of our no-show tonight against the Heat. But earlier today, ESPN's Chad Ford said the ideal situation for the Suns when dealing with Nash (as he will most likely leave next year) is to trade him to Indiana for Darren Collison. Now obviously, this would have to be a deal where Nash gets extended (or agrees to an extension) prior to the trade. I personally would love this deal. Although Nash is older, he's a clear upgrade over Collison (neither plays any D, but Nash is better shooter/passer/penetrator/winner of MVPs). Unless the Pacers are absolutely dead set on DC as PG of the future, they would have to consider it. Part I of this plan: Convince Nash to resign here for two more years and trade DC for him straight up. Nash resigning isn't totally far fetched. He's Canadian (I'll assume that cold doesn't bother him) and Phoenix isn't a large market either. Do this immediately.
Part II of the Plan: Because of NBA trade rules, the Hornets are over the cap and acquired Eric Gordon, so they can't trade him with additional players until mid-February. Thus, we wait until mid-February (possibly over All-Star weekend) and we propose the following: Danny Granger, Lou Amundson, and 2012 First Rounder for Eric Gordon and Chris Kaman. Why NOLA does it: They get hometown guy DG (and really, a top 30 player), Amundson is gone after this year, they get another first in a stacked draft, and most importantly, they don't lose Gordon for nothing after this season. Why IND does it: they get a coveted scorer in Gordon (and a hometown guy for IU/Indy ticket buyers) who is probably a top 5 SG in the league and upgrade our frontcourt depth in the short term (and he's expiring in the long term).
Now, I'll admit, this doesn't give us much time to gel as a team, especially with this schedule. But it seems like our offense right now is based on pointlessly driving to the basket, and I'd rather have Nash driving and kicking it out to Granger (until all-star break and who's real strength isn't creating, its catching and shooting), George (who's killing it from 3 this season) and West (who's one of the best spot up shooters at PF). Plus, we solve our crunchtime problem by calling pick-and-roll with Nash and West over and over again (at least until we get Gordon, who also can create on offense).
So we have this until the All-Star break:
Nash, George, Granger, West, Hibbert with Hill, Jones, Hansbrough, Lance, Lou, and Foster off the bench.
After the break: Nash, Gordon, George, West, Hibbert with Hill, Jones, Hans, Lance, Kaman, and Foster off the bench.
This lineup is scary good and scary deep. This only really makes us a little weaker on D, but we can score with anyone with this lineup. Nash is playing with a pretty terrible cast with the Suns, but he's still got it. And the addition of Kaman to back Hibbert up (and adding Foster) we have the front court depth to battle the Bulls.
Future: We extend Nash for two years before the trade for DC (lets assume at $11 M per year, which is what he's making now; we might even get a discount, again he's older). We have a decision to make next year on Hill, but the market will determine that. If he's reasonable, we match offers. If not we let him go. Some think Hill's not looking good at PG anyway. No matter who is here, we have Nash to tutor Lance/Hill so Point Guard spot is locked up. Next year West comes back (PF locked up for at least a year). George is locked in at SF. After these deals, in this season, we give up $16.3 M and get back $29.3 M. So, we'd still have roughly 7 million in cap room in this season. At the end of the year, we have two main guys to resign: Hibbert and Gordon. But here's the beautiful thing: Kaman and his $13.8M come off the books. That gives us almost $21 Million extra to resign Gordon, Hibbert, and Hill. We give $7M of that to Roy (now at $10M per), $10M to Gordon (to $14 M per), and $4M to Hill (to $5.5M per; if we think he's worth that). We replace Foster (who probably retires) and Kaman (who we don't resign) with cheap bigs.
So in 2012-13 we have this:
Nash (2 years), Gordon (4 years), George (2 years; use Nash's money after to resign him in 2014-15 then have Hill/Lance at PG but that's years away), West (1 year), Hibbert (4 years). That's a dangerous team with hope for the future. The only possible downside is resigning Hans, but we could (if we were so inclined) give West's money, or some of it, to him after 12-13.