Dissecting the Larry Hughes trade rumor

Larry Hughes to the Nets? It’s a possibility, according to NorthJersey.com.

The Nets and Bulls have discussed a deal that would bring veteran shooting guard Larry Hughes to New Jersey for Bobby Simmons and Maurice Ager, league sources said. Sean Williams was offered instead of Ager, but Chicago wasn’t interested.

Both sides are considering it, although the Bulls are talking to many teams about Hughes, who is signed through next season.

The Nets are weighing whether the deal makes them that much better and if it’s financially smart. The additional salary next season would be more than $3 million.

Every time I hear a trade rumor, I ask myself the following questions…

1. What is Team A (or B) trying to accomplish?
2. What are the salary cap ramifications?
3. Is this is a good idea?

Larry Hughes is one of the most overpaid players in the league. He has another year left on his deal at the tune of $13.6 million. This season, he is an average shooting guard (PER: 14.68) which is an improvement over his performance in the two previous seasons.

Since his contract expires in 2010, this trade wouldn’t affect the Nets’ ability to woo LeBron James or any other big-name free agent that summer, so the Nets are apparently trying to get better in the short term with this deal. Bobby Simmons hasn’t been the same player since his foot injuries he suffered with the Bucks, and since it looks like Hughes has a little left in the tank, it wouldn’t be a bad move for the Nets. He plays the same position as Vince Carter, but since the league is getting smaller, Carter could play a little small forward as well. It’s possible that the Nets are giving themselves a backup plan at off guard if they decide to trade Carter away.

For the Bulls, Hughes has been complaining about his lack of minutes and has been somewhat of a distraction. It would appear that the main benefit for Chicago would be to rid itself of that headache.

So, from that point of view, it looks like a good idea for both teams. The Nets get a little better, they don’t threaten their ability to sign a free agent in 2010 and they give themselves a backup at shooting guard if they trade Carter away. The Bulls rid themselves of a headache, create a happier locker room, and save a little money.

It seems like a fair trade to me.

Follow the Scores Report editors on Twitter @clevelandteams and @bullzeyedotcom.

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