Orlando, Los Angeles, Miami, and now Phoenix. I must admit considering 70% of the NBA teams reside in cold weather climates it's fairly amazing a player who has been on four different teams in his career has managed to stay in the south. As far as the trade is concerned I actually like this for both teams although I think it will work out better for Phoenix in the short term.
Why Phoenix made the trade:
1. Amare Stoudemire and Steve Nash didn’t get along with Shawn Marion and it was screwing up the team chemistry.
2. If Phoenix didn’t make the trade Shaq was going to end up in Dallas.
3. If it doesn’t work out Shaq’s huge contract will come off the books in two years same as Steve Nash and Phoenix can start over building around Stoudemire.
4. Shaq will give them the big, physical presence they sorely lack on both ends of the floor.
Why Miami made the trade:
1. Shaq has a huge contract and the team needs to start rebuilding around Dwayne Wade.
2. Shawn Marion can opt out of his contract after this year helping to get Miami under the cap. If not he's only under contract for one more season.
3. So yeah, Miami was basically in it for the money.
I understand that Shaq is old, injured and slow, but I believe Nash's ability to get him easy baskets and the chance for Stoudemire to move to power forward will greatly benefit this team. They have players that can begin to replicate what Marion provided in Grant Hill and Boris Diaw while Shaq can help improve the defense and rebounding in the paint. For those concerned about the Suns running you have to remember it doesn't take five players sprinting up the court to run a fast break. They will miss Marion's perimeter defense, but again having Shaq around will rim will help. Finally getting rid of a player that the other players couldn't stand to bring in a guy like Shaq who has an outstanding locker room presence might be the biggest benefit of all.
Miami can now move into their "rebuilding" phase. They should end up with a top five pick this summer and plenty of cap room in 2009. Maybe Wade can convince Chris Bosh or his boy LeBron James to ditch the cold weather of the north and move to Miami. A team of Derrick Rose, Wade and Bosh/or LeBron could be fairly ridiculous.
PS- I'm still convinced LeBron, Carmelo, Wade and Bosh should sign small contracts and play together when their current deals are up.