With Marcus Camby asking for a trade or buyout, I’ve come up with a few coups to explore as he does not seem to be a willing team member moving forward. I’m not advocating for any team other than the Raptors at this point. Part of the difficulty in trading Camby is that he wants to be on a playoff contender which eliminates quite a few teams from being trade possibilities. Teams that can safely be eliminated from trade conversations with Camby are the Boston Celtics, Philadelphia 76ers, New Orleans Pelicans, Cleveland Cavaliers, Minnesota Timberwolves, Detroit Pistons, Portland Trail Blazers, Milwaukee Bucks, Utah Jazz, Atlanta Hawks, Charlotte Bobcats, Orlando Magic, Phoenix Suns, Washington Wizards, and Sacramento Kings.
I’ve tried out some trades on the NBA Trade Machine one of which is sending Camby to the Pacers for Ian Mahinmi. This would be a great deal for the Raptors as Mahinmi is young and physical whereas Camby is aging and more of a good personality. Mahinmi can play heavy minutes, whereas Camby will likely only be able to play short spurts. Last year Mahinmi averaged 16.5 MPG (Minutes per game), 5 PPG (points per game) and 3.9 RPG (rebounds per game) playing in 80 of 82 games. Camby on the other hand only played 24 games last year due to a mixture of injuries and healthy scratches from the lineup. Camby averaged 10.4 MPG, 1.8 PPG, and 3.3 RPG during last season. I find this trade unlikely as Mahinmi if both younger (27 to Camby’s 39 years of age) and cheaper, but one can always hope right?
The Raptors could try trading Camby to the Miami Heat for Joel Anthony. The Heat were originally after Camby before the Knicks signed him last summer. The Heat have not been using Anthony anyways, so this trade may have some chance of being discussed by both the Raptors and the Heat. What is not certain is if Miami are still looking for a Centre like Camby with the emergence of Chris “Birdman” Andersen last year. I’m not saying that Birdman and Camby are the same player, but they do play the same position, and already are playing behind Chris Bosh. With that in mind, minutes would be hard to come by and would be very difficult to be shared between them.
Trading Camby to the Nuggets for Darrell Arthur would mean Masai Ujiri stealing another piece from the Denver Nuggets. Arthur however, was not with the team while Ujiri was still the GM of the Nuggets. Arthur was recently traded with rights to Joffrey Lauvergne for the Nuggets Kosta Koufos on draft night. I find this trade as unlikely as the Mahinmi deal as Arthur is a younger player at 25 making him 14 years younger than Camby. Arthur still has time to reach his potential whereas Camby is certainly past his prime. Arthur has not yet had a breakout season and has been pretty underwhelming (6.1 PPG, 2.9 RPG in 59 games last season) in the NBA thus far so I wouldn’t rule out a trade like this entirely.
Could the Raptors trade Camby to the Spurs for Boris Diaw? Diaw just confirmed that he will not opt out of his contract which makes the trade possible. Neither player is in the prime of their career, however Diaw did play important minutes in the playoffs, and guarded LeBron James in the NBA Finals. Based on how Diaw was being used by the Spurs I find it unlikely they will want to make this swap.
If I were Masai Ujiri the GM of the Raptors right now, I’d be reaching out to the Miami Heat doing my best to twist their arms into taking on Marcus Camby. Joel Anthony may not have been on the court much last year, but would be better than having Camby sit on the bench for the remainder of his contract (and likely career). A disgruntled Camby would certainly not help locker room morale. I am disappointed that he will not be satisfied to play behind Jonas Valanciunas helping to mentor him and provide useful minutes off the bench in relief of JV during foul trouble and rest time. Of course the other option is to buyout Camby altogether, but the Raptors are short enough at the Centre and Power Forward positions. If we bought out Camby we would just have that many more holes to fill.