There already appears to be some winners and losers of the draft day trades, others will be revealed later in the year and for years to come. To me, at this very point, the biggest winner from the draft day trades appears to be Raymond Felton.
Felton spent his first five season as a member of Charlotte Bobcats. While he was always considered a solid player who puts up consistent numbers he was consistently averaging about 12-14 points and 5-7 assists.
Felton was traded to the Knicks last summer to compliment Amare Stoudemire. He played and started 54 games with the Knicks averaging 17 points and nine assists per game. Those who watched him play know that he was very capable of sustaining those numbers and even increasing them.
He was then traded to Denver. Denver already has a young point guard in Ty Lawson who they are moulding into their future at the point. Felton did not seem to be a part of the Nuggets plans, he became a bench player and put up a career low 11.5 points per game in the 21 games he played there, he did not start a game.
As a member of the Portland Trailblazers Felton should be the starting point guard. He has many capable options on offence including Brandon Roy, Gerald Wallace and LaMarcus Aldridge. Nobody caught more alley oops in the league last year that LaMarcus Aldridge and Felton will most likely be on the passing end of a majority of those. With Rudy Fernandez now playing for Dallas, Portland lack a spot up shooter from deep so now would be a great time for Felton to work on his 3 point shot. He should see many open looks from distance this season as both Roy and Aldridge have the ability to draw double teams. If he can push the Portland tempo a little bit he would be able to find some easy fast break points for Gerald Wallace and himself.
Raymond Felton has been presented with a great opportunity to improve his own game as well as that of his new team. I can expect to see Felton’s numbers go back to where they were when he was in New York but I would not be surprised to see this guy become a 20/10 player for the Blazers and become an all star “snub”.