Even deals that don’t really make any sense get made, so it wouldn’t be too much of a shock if the Oklahoma City Thunder and the New York Knicks get together and work out a trade that sends Iman Shumpert for Nick Collison.
Does this make sense? The Knicks are trying to shop Shumpert, as it seems there’s displeasure on both sides about what’s happening, going back to last season. However, it’s hard to see how Nick Collison improves the situation in New York except maybe giving them a slight tweak to the frontcourt, especially on defense.
It’s also hard to see what the Thunder get out of this. Shumpert is talented and much younger, yes, but it’s not like the Thunder are depleted in the backcourt. Unless they’re planning on moving Jeremy Lamb and/or Thabo Sefolosha as well at some point, adding Shumpert doesn’t really improve them. His scoring per minute is down to 8.8 points per 36 minutes this season, shooting 40.8% from the field and 34.1% from beyond the arc.
The other issue in this is Collison’s value. He’s been with the Thunder since day 1, beginning in his career in their Seattle Supersonics incarnation. He’s a player that doesn’t show his worth on the stat sheet (averaging a career low 4.2 points per game so far this season), but his influence, leadership and experience are worth more on the Thunder, where he acts not just as a motivator coming off the bench but as some sort of mentor to younger players. On the Knicks? It’s not quite sure how that works.
In any case, according to the Examiner, talks for this trade to happen are on, with the Knicks trying to get a first round draft pick as well for Shumpert, as they don’t have any until 2018. Unless the Thunder know something no one does and are very intrigued to see how a Shumpert – Westbrook backcourt looks like, this doesn’t sound like a very smart deal to make.