Trade No. 2: Chris Paul to the Hornets
Chris Paul proved to the Warriors and to the league that he still has plenty left to offer an NBA team, running the Warriors' second unit with aplomb and rating as the best player on the team in the early going. Then another freak injury came about and Paul was out for weeks.
As he is close to a return, it's also worth noting that he may be returning to a different team entirely. Paul is a prime trade candidate given that he is relatively duplicitous on the Warriors, and has a non-guaranteed option for next season that should give his team maximum flexibility. The question becomes what else needs to change hands to make this a deal worth making.
Here's what the trade could look like:
The Hornets would talk themselves into this deal because of the value of Moses Moody in particular. Nick Richards and Cody Martin aren't valuable enough to command worthwhile deals, so including them in a deal for a steady hand at point-guard and frontcourt depth makes a lot of sense.
The Warriors would immediately add a switchable center in Washington and a pair of reserve picks in Cody Martin and Nick Richards. Losing Moses Moody is difficult, but head coach Steve Kerr has inexplicably stopped playing him anyway. Players like Washington and Cody Martin are both ready to step up in the continued absence of our fearless instructor.
This deal makes the Hornets better, a contrast to the lose-now, lose-later types of deals they happen to be making.
The Golden State Warriors lose Paul and Moody, but they get back real NBA rotation players in Washington and Martin, with Nick Richards a scrappy defender inside. None of these players is revolutionizing the sport, but each grouping can have some fascinating games.
Whether it's Andrew Wiggins, Chris Paul or someone else entirely, the Warriors have plenty of ammunition, plenty of motivation and a superstar point-guard who may not stay at that level of play forever. Either of these deals just under the deadline could turn into a run to the playoffs and beyond.