Trades that should have happened

Breaking down possible deals that would have benefited both sides

Updated: February 21, 2014, 2:20 PM ET
By Amin Elhassan | ESPN Insider

Shawn Marion, Maalik WayneJerome Miron/USA TODAY SportsShawn Marion, averaging 10.6 points per game, would have helped Houston this season.

In what is becoming a yearly occurrence, the NBA trade deadline came and went with a thud. That's not to say important acquisitions weren't made: The Wizards traded for Andre Miller, the Warriors added steady hand Steve Blake, and the Pacers brought in Evan Turner. But overall, we were left with a yearning for something more, whether it was a rumored deal that didn't come to fruition or a player long mentioned to be on the block who didn't get jettisoned.

Here are three deals that didn't happen but I wish we could have seen. They would have been beneficial to either side, as well as for the players involved.


Dallas trades: Shawn Marion, future second-round pick
Houston trades: Omer Asik, cash considerations

This was not a rumored trade, but Asik had been one of the biggest names on the trading block this season (pretty much since they acquired Dwight Howard last summer). The Rockets had attempted to move him in December, with the idea that any assets received in return could be then repackaged and dealt at the trade deadline, but they were unsuccessful in finding a suitor. The vagaries of Asik's contract ($8.4 million cap hit next year, but $15 million actual cash value owed), along with a bruised right thigh that kept him sidelined for the better part of two months, ultimately hurt his trade value.

Why this works for the Mavericks: Dallas would have been the perfect landing spot, where the Mavericks are fighting for their playoff lives and have a desperate need to improve on defense. Dallas is 22nd in points allowed per 100 possessions (105.5) and 23rd in defensive rebound percentage (73 percent). Asik would have served as the perfect defensive anchor and a nice complement to Dallas' more offensive-minded players, like Dirk Nowitzki and Monta Ellis. At 27 years old, Asik is young enough to continue to be a contributing piece moving forward.

The contract still is an issue, but if there's an owner who'd probably be willing to take a cash hit for an elite defensive center on a cap-friendly deal, it would be Mark Cuban. Still, the Mavericks could negotiate to have the Rockets kick in some cash considerations to at least partially alleviate this assumed burden.