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|Dr. Jack on the Cavaliers-Celtics trade|
When I spoke with Cavaliers coach Paul Silas and GM Jim Paxson last week, they told me they wanted to acquire some veteran leadership for their young team. That's what prompted this trade for the Cavs.
Eric Williams, who goes to Cleveland, is a team leader. He has a strong work ethic and a great locker-room presence. There are no numbers to measure these qualities, but Boston will miss them while they pay dividends for the Cavs. Williams' intangibles are Boston's greatest loss.
For Boston, the key to the trade is Ricky Davis. He gives Boston another certifiable scorer after Paul Pierce. The Celtics have been hard-pressed to find another scorer after the trade of Antoine Walker, and Davis can be that guy.
Davis has star potential, but the challenge for Celtics coach Jim O'Brien will be to help Davis produce consistently. If he can, Boston wins in this trade. Still, O'Brien will need to use all his coaching skills to harness Davis' potential. Davis can score, run the floor and create opportunities for teammates.
I expect Eric Williams to have a positive influence on young players like rookie phenom Lebron James and veterans alike. Williams' hard work in practice and in games will inspire a better effort on defense and in the rebounding department.
As far as the other players in the deal, Cleveland gets Tony Battie and Kedrick Brown. Battie has not played well this season, while Brown is still playing like a rookie in his third year. He has athletic ability, though, so if Silas gets him to lift his game, Brown could help the Cavs.
Boston gets Chris Mihm and Michael Stewart. The 7-foot Mihm is a shot-blocking presence who can score when needed. He hasn't gotten consistent minutes, but he should get a chance to play for the Celtics. Stewart, meanwhile, is a role player who bangs inside and plays hard.
|Fantasy spin on Cavaliers-Celtics trade|
Not only does this look like a great trade for the Celtics, but for fantasy owners who own the new Celtics, it could help greatly. While Ricky Davis was the No. 3 scorer on Cleveland, it should be easy for him to be second only to Paul Pierce in Boston. Davis shouldn't see any dip in his stats (15, 5 and 5); in fact, he should score more now, maybe close to 20 a night. But this is big news for Mihm. Stuck behind Zydrunas Ilgauskas and Carlos Boozer as a reserve, Mihm might be Boston's starting center now, and get the 30 minutes a night he demands. Is he a good player? Well, the jury is still out, but now he gets the opportunity. Mihm last scored double digits seven games ago, but he hasn't stopped rebounding, as he had 10 against Detroit a few games ago. He can block shots, too. Don't be shocked to see Mihm start getting big minutes and producing near double-doubles consistently.
-- Eric Karabell