I think a lot of people are disregarding the possibility of using Murphy as a trade asset during the year. If Murphy plays well the first half of the year, and IF we are out of playoff contention, I guarantee you that there will be a contender that will take him on for a second half push with his contract coming off the books at the end of the year. And we might not have to take much salary back in return, a list of some of the teams that may be contenders that have trade exceptions (from shamsports.com):
Atlanta Hawks: $3,631,449
Dallas Mavericks: $11,233,342
Houston Rockets: $3,881,000 (+6.3mil from today's trade) = $10,191,000
New Orleans Hornets: $9,737,618 (-1.4mil, I believe, from today's trade) = $8,337,618
Phoenix Suns: $6,808,331
Utah Jazz: $11,936,081
The Cavs and Raptors have even bigger exceptions but I don't think that anyone sees them contending this year. Also it opens the other possibility of acquiring a great player who is unhappy with his team in exchange for cap relief.
I really don't see this as "repeating" last years strategy as some others have claimed. What did we free up? $2 million? They made this deal for 2 reasons:
1. Enable them to ease Favors along
2. Acquire a tradeable asset that allows them to build through the trade market.
Prokorov said that if he struck out in free agency, he was going to do all he could to build through the draft and the trade market, and this is just another example of his plan.