Five trades that should happen (but won’t)

Phoenix Suns Steve Nash stands next to head coach Alvin Gentry in the second half against the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden in New York City on January 17, 2011. The Suns defeated the Knicks 129-121. UPI/John Angelillo

GMs around the league were worried that there wouldn’t be much action leading up to Thursday’s trade deadline, but once the Carmelo Anthony trade went down, there has been a flurry of activity highlighted by the Nets’ acquisition of Deron Williams.

Here are five more trades that should happen, but probably won’t. They generally include one older player on a bad team that isn’t going anywhere.

Click on each trade’s headline to see it in the ESPN Trade Machine.

1. Steve Nash to Atlanta for Jamal Crawford and two first round picks
Free Steve Nash! The Hawks aren’t the ideal destination for Nash, but the Hawks really need a floor leader and the team has the defensive frontcourt (Josh Smith, Al Horford) to make up for Nash’s weakness on that end of the court. Smith and Horford would work well in Nash’s patented screen-and-roll and he would take the pressure off of Joe Johnson to create as the shot clock is winding down. The Suns aren’t going to get much out of this deal other than cap relief (Crawford’s deal is expiring) and a couple of first round picks, but Nash is 37 years old and deserves to play in the postseason. The Suns aren’t going anywhere anyway.

2. Rip Hamilton to Chicago for Kyle Korver and Ronnie Brewer
Rip can still play. He’s averaging 13.3 points per game and his shooting 40%+ from 3PT even though his minutes are sporadic. He works hard on defense and has kept himself in great shape throughout his career, so he should be able to contribute for the remainder of his contract. His spot up jumper would be a nice fit alongside Derrick Rose in the Chicago backcourt. The Pistons would be rid of the headache of keeping Rip on the roster without playing him and would get a couple of youngish wings in Korver and Brewer that could actually contribute.

3. Mo Williams to Portland for Andre Miller and Rudy Fernandez
The Blazers are currently sitting in the #5 spot in the West and could use a dynamic point guard who can create and shoot it while Brandon Roy comes back from his knee injury. Williams is good enough to run the pick-and-roll with LaMarcus Aldridge, but he’s also a spot shooter, so he’d be a solid fit if/when Roy does come back and dominate the ball. For Williams, the Cavs would get Fernandez who still has some upside as a 25-year-old swingman who gave Team USA fits in the 2008 Olympics. He’s a career 38% three-point shooter and would do well with more minutes in Cleveland. The Blazers could throw in their first round pick if a sweetener was needed.

4. Gerald Wallace to Dallas for Roddy Beaubois and Caron Butler
The Mavs could use a swingman to replace Caron Butler and Wallace fits the mold. He’s not a great shooter, but he would complement Dirk Nowitzki with his toughness, defense and rebounding. Beaubois is a good young prospect, but the Mavs might smell blood as the Western Conference has been depleted by trades while the Lakers seem more vulnerable than ever. The Bobcats would save about $18 million over the next two years and get a star on the rise in Beaubois. (He had an 18.59 PER in his rookie season.)

Charlotte Bobcats guard Stephen Jackson stares at an official after being charged with a foul in the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Miami Heat in Charlotte, North Carolina on February 4, 2011. UPI/Nell Redmond

5. Steven Jackson to New Orleans for Marcus Thornton, Marcus Banks and Willie Green
The Bobcats continue remaking their backcourt with the acquisition of a good young scorer in Thornton, while also saving $19 million (minus whatever they eventually pay Thornton) over the next two seasons. In return, the Hornets get Jackson, a grizzled vet who can still score in bunches and take the pressure off Chris Paul and David West. Chemistry is always an issue, but Jackson should do fine with an established alpha dog like Paul who is going to be the one setting him up for open shot after open shot.

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