With the NBA trade deadline just two days away, the Detroit Pistons and Orlando Magic made the first of hopefully many big moves in the next 48 hours. Orlando traded forward Tobias Harris to Detroit for guard Brandon Jennings and forward Ersan Ilyasova.
As a Tobias Harris and Aaron Gordon fantasy owner, I could not be happier about this move. Tobias Harris will go to Detroit and stay a starter upfront, alongside Andre Drummond and likely be the third scoring option in the offense, after Drummond and point guard Reggie Jackson.
In Detroit, Harris will not have anyone really breathing down his neck trying to take his job, as Stanley Johnson is more of a threat to steal minutes from Marcus Morris and the banged up Kentavious Caldwell-Pope.
With Harris out of Orlando, Aaron Gordon, who has seen an increase in minutes lately, will stay a starter in the Magic offense and now should have no problem playing 30+ minutes each night.
Ersan Ilyasova will likely slide into the Magic starting five, but his value will slide a little bit as guys on the bench like Channing Frye, Jason Smith and even Andrew Nicholson could steal minutes from him.
Brandon Jennings again goes to a team with a crowded backcourt. You have to assume Jennings will ride the bench behind Elfrid Payton and Victor Oladipo. However if Payton struggles, Jennings will be right there to step in. If anything this is a slight upgrade in value for Jennings, and could wind up being a disaster for Payton's value.
Neither Detroit or Orlando is one of the top eight seeds in the Eastern Conference but Detroit is just a half game back of Charlotte and a full game back of the Bulls for the seventh seed. They are hoping acquiring Harris will put them over the edge and wind up with a 7 or 8 seed.
Orlando is 23-29 but are just three games behind Detroit. Orlando felt that they could afford to let Harris go, and get two guys in Ilyasova and Jennings who can contribute and give them a second half push into a playoff spot.