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Denver trades Nene to Wizards in three-team deal with Clippers

Mar 15, 2012, 5:00 PM EDT

Antawn Jamison, Nene AP

When the lockout ended, Nene was maybe the most coveted free agent out there — a true big man who is a borderline All-Star theoretically entering his prime. Denver was able to keep him with a five-year, $67 million contract. However, he has spent a chunk of this season injured and not putting up his traditional numbers.

In a surprise just before the trade deadline Thursday, the Nuggets traded him and got back JaVale McGee, the very athletic Washington Wizards big man who is known equally for his big dunks and knuckleheaded plays. Maybe not all that equally.

Here is how the three-team deal that also includes the Clippers works out, as reported by

Nuggets get: JaVale McGee, Ronny Turiaf

Wizards get: Nene, Brian Cook, second round pick.

Clippers get: Nick Young

I don’t like this for Denver. The injuries suffered by Nene this year had the Nuggets feeling buyer’s remorse on their new deal, reports Ken Berger of Still, Nene when healthy is one of the more solid big men in the league. JaVale McGee is a headcase, part of the reason the Wizards want to remake their roster. He also may be the most salvageable of Washington’s head cases — George Karl has a task ahead of him. That said, this will save the Nuggets a lot of money as McGee is on his rookie deal and is set to make $3.5 million next year.

For the Clippers, this is a good move. Nick Young is the kind of very athletic two guard that fills in where Chauncey Billups was before his injury. Young doesn’t bring a lot of defense to a team that needs it, but he does score (16.6 points per game) and he fits the Clippers style. He can learn to win with the rest of their young talent. (He’s also a Los Angeles kid that gets to come home.) If it doesn’t work out, well, he is a free agent after this season.

For the Warriors, it is a nice first step. They need to remake their locker room with some more professional personalities. Nene is that. It’s about the culture of the franchise first. Second, when healthy Nene is one of the better centers in the East and can be the inside to John Wall’s outside.

  1. boilerup1869 - Mar 15, 2012 at 5:06 PM

    Nene is weird looking

  2. lks311 - Mar 15, 2012 at 5:07 PM

    Nene is a huge talent that plays soft—rarely up to his condiderable ability. Just too little production for $13M. Anyone who doesn’t like this deal for the Nuggets really does not watch Denver basketball.

  3. spellingcopfather - Mar 15, 2012 at 5:07 PM

    I know NeNe is pissed.

  4. anythingbutyanks - Mar 15, 2012 at 5:27 PM

    It would be a good move for the Warriors if they were involved in this trade- otherwise not so much. You mean Wizards.

  5. readysethike - Mar 15, 2012 at 5:29 PM

    Wow great move by the clips, cook was expendable and nick young is a solid two guard who can score. Hes actually an upgrade over them,missing out on j.r. smith. Youth movement is in full effect

  6. tcclark - Mar 15, 2012 at 5:35 PM

    Wow how did the Clippers pull that off? They got Nick Young for practically nothing

  7. mistercharitystripe34 - Mar 15, 2012 at 5:36 PM

    Stupid move by the Nuggets. They’re assuming McGee magically attains discipline, toughness and court awareness in a season where they could’ve made a nice run in May when healthy.

  8. 00maltliquor - Mar 15, 2012 at 5:52 PM

    And THAT’S why players leave their franchises! He could have signed for more elsewhere but decided to be loyal and stay home with the team that was on its knees telling him to give ’em one more chance baby baby please! Just for them to cut the rope on him not even half a year later! Now he has to go to one of the worst teams ever!

    And what happend to Nene being the prized free agent of 2012 Kurt! F man I’ve been done told you Kurt stop posting that B.S. about Nene being the best FA out there and how he can give you solid scoring and rebounds, the guys not worth it! He’s a nice role player but not what you were making him out to be, and now you are reniging on your stance about him saying he was “maybe” the most coveted FA out there and he’s not putting up his typical numers, shiiit, get used to it this IS the real Nene. Nothing more nothing less, injuries and all!

  9. dal24la - Mar 15, 2012 at 5:52 PM

    Clippers made out like bandits in this trade; I can’t imagine Nick Young acting stupidly enough to out weight Clippers only giving up Brian Cook and a 2nd rnd pick.

  10. adzs93 - Mar 15, 2012 at 6:04 PM

    Me and a friend were just discussing (Laughing at) this trade when it dawned on me that with Nene’s deal now off the books Nuggets can commit to Wilson Chandler for 7/8/9 mil a year…Maybe Ujari really does know what hes doing; The guy in essence traded Nene for Mcgee AND Chandler…sounds a lot better now…Correct me if i’m wrong not 100% sure

  11. genericcommenter - Mar 15, 2012 at 6:08 PM

    I remember a writer here touting Nene as a free agent big without much injury history- which I pointed out at the time was far from accurate. So a guy without much injury history/risk, which means he practically missed 2 full seasons and significant chunks of 2 others in a 4 year stretch “has spent a chunk of this season injured.”

    • 00maltliquor - Mar 15, 2012 at 9:03 PM

      I already called him out, it was Kurt Helin. Look up

  12. chc4 - Mar 15, 2012 at 6:36 PM

    You fail to mention the fact that Wall sucks. That guy will never be part of a winning team.

  13. jwphillips17 - Mar 15, 2012 at 6:36 PM

    Nene is simply not “one of the more solid big men in the league,” unless you’re being completely literal. The guy is the classic “look like Tarzan, play like Jane” player. Denver got sick of waiting for him to turn the corner. As is, he is soft and overpaid. Good role player, not a core-player to build around. In a couple of years Washington will be looking to dump his salary.

  14. freudnumb - Mar 15, 2012 at 7:00 PM


  15. bcjim - Mar 15, 2012 at 7:25 PM

    What the heck? I’m all for dumping McGee but for a guy with 4y and 50+mil left? He better be a pro AND a decent player. And Nick Young? Eh, I guess he was done here anyway.

  16. coryfor3 - Mar 15, 2012 at 7:37 PM

    Very informative! I had failed to see how nene going to dc would benefit the warriors

  17. diegorodriguez3897 - Mar 15, 2012 at 7:50 PM

    You don’t like this move for the Nuggets? You must not watch many of their games. This a low risk move by the Nuggets. Nene just hasn’t shown the heart and fire that was expected of him after he got his new contract. The biggest fact in this move though is the breakout rookie season of the Manimal. If you don’t know you better ask somebody.

    • rushbacker - Mar 15, 2012 at 10:20 PM

      It’s about Faried, and it’s also about Al Harrington giving them high quality minutes at the four. Instead of moving Nene back to the five full-time to clear up the logjam at four, they moved him and got a true center with better size, plenty of athleticism, healthier legs and a cheaper contract– which should allow them to re-sign Wilson Chandler.

      But yea, other than that, nothing to like for Denver.

  18. buckeyeboi - Mar 15, 2012 at 7:52 PM

    WTH was Denver thinking about? Giving up Nene for CaValry McGee? Seriously???

  19. boyohboytheword - Mar 15, 2012 at 7:57 PM

    Kidding me?? Nick young was and still is a beast, and with the right tutelage can become a great 6th man….mind you he bears the unfortunate misfortune of being a former Wizard…however the statistics say that nearly all good players that leave Washington become much better during their next stay, a la’ Ben Wallace, Rip, Caron Butler……..the list goes on and on. As far as Wall goes, he is a better than average PG, theirs really only 6-7 pg’s who can be listed in the same convo as the NBA stands today and Mcgee is still wet behind the ears, but defensivley this guy is a monster….under the Nugs coaching staff he will improve.

  20. brianjoates - Mar 15, 2012 at 8:07 PM

    How did the Warriors get involved in this trade. How can this be an NBC owned site? Does NBC have any clue as to who the “sports writers” are they have on staff?Take a little pride in representing the brand you work for and if nothing else the guys/women journalists who call you a co-worker. Do you think Bob Costas would be okay with reporting wrong information over and over? Its the little things that will make you better.

    I want to come to this site and not feel like Iam being totally duped by a 6th grader.

  21. storebrandcookies - Mar 15, 2012 at 8:35 PM

    What did LA give up? A bag of Doritos? They better have the Nacho Cheese kind!

  22. isujames - Mar 15, 2012 at 8:42 PM


  23. jumbossportsblog - Mar 15, 2012 at 9:24 PM

    Reblogged this on jumbossportsblog.

  24. genericcommenter - Mar 31, 2012 at 2:13 AM

    where are the comments?

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