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Fantasy Basketball Winners And Losers From 2023 NBA Offseason Trades

Chris Paul

The dust has settled from the 2023 offseason, and a lot of players have found new homes, both as FAs and signing contracts, and as players who got traded to new teams, and we'll be focusing on the latter today.

These players had no control over their new destinations, but now that they're in a new team, they will put their heads down and work towards helping their new squads. Some of these players will get more opportunities while others will unfortunately get buried deep in their new team's depth charts.

With that in mind, this article will look at some of the players who were winners (and losers) after the trades of the 2023 offseason. Note that this focuses mostly on each player's statistical production.

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#4. Winner: Dillon Brooks (Houston Rockets)

Dillon Brooks can now do whatever he pleases in H-Town, which is the only thing he ever wanted. I have previously criticized Houston's move to sign him and Fred VanVleet but acknowledged that this signing was a big win for Brooks himself and his production. Brooks' efficiency has been questioned in the past, but he seems like one of those players whose efficiency could increase with more freedom.

Brooks isn't blameless for his exit from Memphis. He tried to be the NBA's new top villain in Memphis but he simply didn't have the talent for that type of role. No one would bat an eye at him in Houston, for a few years at least, so he has full freedom to do whatever he wants with his image and playing style. I mean, are you really a villain if you're playing for a team that would be lucky to get to the Play-In Tournament?

Regardless of how the Rockets will manage his minutes, we all know that his role with the Rockets will be bigger than it was with the Grizzlies. The 2023 All-Defensive Second Team member knows that he can grow with his new squad, as he was quoted as saying that Fred VanVleet would help him out on the floor more than Ja Morant ever did.

That's a very bold claim, but it shows that he is confident in his new team and PG. Brooks is 27, which simultaneously means that he's at the peak of his physical powers and he's one of the veteran voices of this Rockets team, as he's the fifth oldest player on the team and has the third most NBA experience among his teammates. Look for him to have the best season of his career and prove himself as one of the best two-way players in the association.


#3. Loser: Chris Duarte (Sacramento Kings)

The NBA world moves very fast. One minute, you're on top of the world, and just as you're trying to bask in your glory, you realize that you've been overtaken by other young guns and now your place and standing in the league is in serious jeopardy.

That's exactly what happened with Chris Duarte, who went from one of the most promising young players in the NBA to an afterthought who was traded for two second-round picks in 2028 and 2030, meaning that he went from being a lottery pick with tons of promise to being traded for two kids who are middle schoolers right now. In his rookie season, Durate put up 13.1 points a night while shooting 43.2% from the field and making the All-Rookie Second Team, but his stats plummeted last season, averaging just 7.9 PPG while shooting 36.9% from the field.

There are a bunch of reasons for his downfall, one of them was switching his position from SG to SF due to the drafting of Benedict Mathurin. He couldn't even be a hybrid SG/SF due to the emergence of Andrew Nembhard and Aaron Nesmith, both very hungry players who pounced on the opportunity to replace Duarte. His time in Indiana ended officially when he was traded to Sacramento.

Things aren't much better in Sactown, as he is behind Kevin Huerter and Malik Monk in the SG depth chart, and things aren't much better at SF as he'll have to compete with Harrison Barnes, Kessler Edwards, and the newly acquired Aleksandar Vezenkov, who has quietly risen up the ranks to become one of the best players in Europe and could be a darkhorse Rookie of the Year candidate. With this much competition, Duarte's NBA future is in serious jeopardy.


#2. Winner: Jordan Poole (Washington Wizards):

Another "now I do what I want" type of player is Jordan Poole. Similarly to Duarte, the perception of Poole has changed quite a bit. In his first two years, he was thought to be a high volume-low efficiency role player who would bounce around from team to team, but he broke out in 2021-22, putting up great numbers in the regular season (18.5 PPG on 44.8% shooting).

Many thought he'd struggle in the postseason, but he kept up his awesome production in the playoffs, averaging 17 points a night while shooting 50.8% from the floor and 39.1% from deep en route to winning the 2022 NBA championship. He then signed a four-year/$140 million extension with the Dubs, but a practice altercation with teammate Draymond Green changed everything.

2022-23 was a nightmare for Poole, as his efficiency dropped (from 59.8 TS% to 57.3 TS%) due to other teams game-planning for him and no longer treating him as a bench player. His advanced stats showed that he was actively hurting the Warriors, as his PER dropped from 16.1 to 14.6, his Win Shares per 48 were halved from 2021-22 (0.126 to 0.063), his VORP went from 1.7 to 0.1, and his Plus/Minus Net Per 100 Possessions average went from +1.4 to a disgusting -7.1.

His playoff stats are somehow even worse, and his terrible performance against the Lakers caused the team to trade him. Now, both he and the Warriors get a fresh start, which I previously mentioned as being a good thing for both parties. Poole is now the undeniable leader of this Wizards team and he can get his career back on track.


#1. Loser: Chris Paul (Golden State Warriors):

Getting Chris Paul was a win for the Warriors, and going to Golden State is a win for Chris Paul as he's looking to get that elusive ring. So, why is he listed as a loser here? We're focused on production in this article, and it's almost certain that Paul's production will decline this season due to many factors.

Firstly, his role in Golden State will be nowhere near as prominent as it was in Phoenix, or anywhere else he's ever played. Paul has played in 1214 games and has started in all of them, but it's almost certain that he'll have to come off the bench for the Warriors due to the presence of the "Splash Brothers" Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson in the backcourt. Even if you want to go small ball, Kevon Looney would have to come off the bench, which isn't ideal since most of the Dubs' best lineups last year included him.

The second factor is the greatest and most unbeatable force in NBA history: Father Time. No one is safe from it, even LeBron James, the one man we thought would be immune from Father Time has suffered multiple injuries with him nearing his 40s (seven different injuries in the last two seasons).

Unlike LeBron however, Paul has already been on the decline quietly, as 2022-23 was the first season of Paul's career since his rookie season that he didn't record a positive Plus/Minus Net Per 100 Possessions average (0.0 last season). He also recorded career lows in PER, Win Shares, Win Shares per 48, VORP, Box Plus/Minus, and even some raw stats like PPG. He's 38, already declining, and going to get a diminished role on the Warriors. So, even though he could get a ring, he won't be the All-Star of old.


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