OTG's NBA Trade Deadline Marathon: Day 7
*Atlanta receives New Orleans 2019 second round pick*
It may come as a surprise to some that the New Orleans Pelicans would be looking for ANOTHER center at the deadline, but Dewayne Dedmon fixes a huge problem for them.
Right now, the Pels’ defense completely falls off of a cliff when Anthony Davis goes off the floor. New Orleans is a pretty good defensive team when AD is playing, but they’re so awful when he isn’t that they end up with the 19th ranked defense in the league.
While some of that effect could be alleviated by limiting DeMarcus Cousins’ minutes with Rajon Rondo — who has been poison to the defense all year — the real issue is this: Cousins needs a rim protector next to him. That’s why the defense works when he plays with Davis, and falls apart when Dante Cunningham is at the four.
Dedmon is the perfect man for the job. He’s an outstanding rim protector on a great contract. He’s also useful as a roll man on offense, and can knock down some corner threes, so he won’t kill the Pels’ spacing.
As for the Hawks, they have no use for Dedmon, who only provides an obstacle for their tanking goals. In exchange, they get a pick and Cheick Diallo, a young, athletic big they can try to turn into a player.