Could the Hornets Trade for Rodrigue Beaubois?

In a story up on ESPN Dallas, Tim McMahon writes that it seems as if the Mavericks are exploring trade options for the young hybrid guard Rodrigue Beaubois:

The buzz is that Rodrigue Beaubois has gone from "pretty much untouchable" -- as Mark Cuban called the dynamic guard a couple years ago -- to being quietly shopped.

That's what ESPN The Magazine's Chris Broussard reports in his TrueHoop post on trade rumors:

Sources say Dallas is about ready to move on from the Roddy Beaubois experiment. The Mavericks have thought for years that the talented young Frenchman could be another Tony Parker, but he has not been able to master the move from shooting guard to point guard. Nor has he been able to fill the void left by J.J. Barea. If they don't move him before this year's deadline, he could be gone over the summer.

McMahon goes on to say that the price for Beaubois is most likely significantly lower than it may have been just two years ago, speculating that a draft pick outside of the lottery may get the deal done. While the Hornets would not be able to offer a sub-lottery draft pick within the next few years, there would be other ways to get the deal done.

In a column a few weeks back, I posted a three-team trade involving the Hornets, Mavericks, and Warriors that sent Chris Kaman to the Mavericks, Brendan Haywood to the Warriors, and Shawn Marion, Beaubois, Ekpe Udoh, Jeremy Tyler, and Dorell Wright to the Hornets. I'm not proposing the same exact trade this time around, because the Mavericks would, frankly, be getting ripped off in that deal. Instead, I took the liberty of tinkering with ESPN's NBA Trade Machine again with the same idea of having Beaubois end up on New Orleans and Kaman on Dallas:

Hornets Receive: Rodrigue Beaubois, Brendan Haywood

Mavericks Receive: Chris Kaman

To make the salaries work, the two teams would have to wait until March 1st, at which point Dallas could throw in a variety of one-year and two-year contracts in order to complete the trade:

Ian Mahinmi (1-year; $915,852)

Brian Cardinal (1-year; $854,389)

Delonte West (1-year; $854,389)

Yi Jianlian (1-year; $771,706)

Brandan Wright (2-years; $915,852)

Sean Williams (2-years; $885,120)

They would need to combine some of those contracts to come up with the $2.85 million that needs to be made up for this trade to go through. So, a potential trade would involve the moving parts mentioned above in the initial trade, along with three of the players listed above. This is where it would get tricky because the trade machine limits me from putting in those parts because of the March 1st restriction. It might involve the Hornets cutting some players in order to make room on the roster for the incoming Mavs, or a third team in order to simplify the trade.

The gist of the trade makes huge sense for both teams. The Hornets, who have been looking to move Kaman's large expiring contract, do just that while receiving a young talent who simply needs a larger role and more minutes, and the still solid Haywood. The Mavericks, who people speculate to be making a large run at Deron Williams or Dwight Howard or both, free up a lot of cap space for free agency.

The downside of the trade for the Hornets is the length of Haywood's contract as they move forward with rebuilding, it stretches until the 2014-15 season with a team option for the 2015-16 season. He is making $7.6 million this year, and increases by about $700,000 a year until it peaks at $10.5 million in 2015-16. Obviously the Hornets would not pick up Haywood's option in 2015, so they would have Haywood for the next three years after this one, and would pay him about $27 million over those seasons.

No rebuilding team wants to have large contracts on its books because it simply limits flexibility, but I believe that the commitment to Haywood is not enough to deter Dell Demps and the Hornets from moving forward with the deal. Beaubois is only 23 and plays an exciting, fast-paced game that would light up the Hive. As Eric Gordon continues to sit out, Monty Williams is shuffling Greivis Vasquez, Jarrett Jack, and Marco Belinelli in the backcourt. There's certainly enough available minutes for Beaubois, and I think he would improve significantly with more PT. When March 1st comes, and as the March 15th trade deadline approaches, I believe Demps should attempt to make a move for Roddy Beaubois.

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