While the Celtics  worked to acquire Nate Robinson , the Cleveland Cavaliers  pulled off a major deal Wednesday, landing Antawn Jamison  from the Wizards in a three-team trade that also involved the Clippers.
The cost for acquiring the two-time All-Star was relatively light as Cleveland surrendered just a first round pick, center Zydrunas Ilgauskus and the rights to 2009 second round pick Emir Preldzic. It is widely believed that Ilgauskus will be bought out by the Wizards and then re-sign with the Cavs after 30 days.
Cleveland also got one-time Celtic Sebastian Telfair , although his role is expected to be limited. The Wizards received Al Thornton and the Clippers took back Drew Gooden , who was just traded to the Wizards over the weekend by the Mavericks.
The upshot of all that is that the Cavs finally acquired their long-desired big man who can shoot from the outside, without having to give up young forward J.J. Hickson.
There had been rumblings over the All-Star break that the Cavs were interested in Phoenix’s Amar’e Stoudemire, but that rumor went from white hot to ice cold in the span of 72 hours. Reports late Wednesday night indicated that Phoenix would likely keep Stoudemire for the rest of the season. (He has a player option this summer).
The stage is now set for the Cavs and LeBron James . They have the best record, the best player, and the prized late-season addition to bring it all home before James hits free agency. The pressure, however, will be enormous on them in the playoffs.
The Celtics play the Cavs next Thursday in a TNT game at the Garden. The two teams haven’t met since opening day when the Celtics won 95-89 in Cleveland. The other main contenders in the East–Atlanta and Orlando–are not expected to do much with their rosters before the deadline.