The Toronto Raptors trade Ermine O' Neal to Miami Heat for Shawn Marion, Marcus Banks. This is the first major move as the Feb. 19th trade deadline looms closer. Is this an act of genius or desperation. Moves made primarily because of an immovable date are rarely genius.
The Raptors appear rudderless by giving up on O' Neal after the off season trade to get 'em. They were once the leagues up and comers. But the wheels have fallen off for no discernable reason. They fired the head coach, but that didn't help. No they shed O' neal after half a season? Maybe Toronto was reading to much of their own press. Maybe they thought O' neal would put them on the precipice of a championship ... or maybe it just bad chemistry.
The Heat seems to get the better of the deal. The Matrix was never the right fit. The trade from Phoenix was more about addition by subtraction. Now was good time to move him, 'cause there only a year left on his deal. As a true center, O' neal is a better fit. But you have to wonder about the chemistry. The Heat is clearly D. Wade's team. It's not in O' neal's genes to play 2nd banana.
For their part, I hope the Sixers don't get caught up in the tradewinds. There is no obvious two team deal out there and multi-team deals are difficult. I know this team has weaknesses, but we can't fix everything at once ... that 's how we got into that predicament before and I worry about the chemistry more than a lack of an outside shot.