Nuggets Enter the Free Agency Frenzy: Acquire Fernandez and Brewer

For the first couple days of free agency, the Denver Nuggets were among the quietest teams in the NBA . It was thought that Nene was leaving the Nuggets and besides two minor signings, the Nuggets were completely stagnant.

All of that changed on Tuesday when the Nuggets made a splash in the free agency market by trading for Rudy Fernandez and Core Brewer, and then re-signing Nene. For this article we will look at the trade.

The Nuggets acquired Rudy Fernandez and Corey Brewer from the Dallas Mavericks in return for a future second round pick. Yes you read that correctly, the Nuggets added some much needed depth with two quality players for just a future second round pick.

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First off is Rudy Fernandez. The 6-foot-6 Spaniard will be entering his fourth year in the NBA and made a living as the sixth-man for the Portland Trail Blazers before being traded to Dallas on draft day. Fernandez will serve as a suitable replacement for  J.R. Smith who is caught up in China and isn't expected to resign with the Nuggets when he comes back. Fernandez is a more consistent shooter but isn't as explosive. There have been reports that he isn't the greatest teammate in the world and tends to complain if he doesn't get his way. But then again, Smith had plenty of baggage as well. The main difference between Smith and Fernandez is Fernandez can actually defend.

Fernandez has the ability to guard both point and shooting guards and also has chemistry with expected back up point guard Andre Miller, as the two spent their last two years together playing in Portland.

So if Fernandez is such a solid asset? Why did the Mavericks give him up for next to nothing?

The catch is that Fernandez has been interested in negotiating for a buyout for the final season of his contract to go back to play in Spain. Fernandez is due $2.18 million in his final season and has a more lucrative contract offer from his former club, Real Madrid.

Fernandez said that if he didn't have a defining role in the Dallas rotation, then he would seek a buyout. It isn't quite known what qualifies as a defining role, but the Nuggets expect to resign Arron Afflalo. So assuming that happens, Fernandez would likely have a similar role in Denver as he had in Portland.

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Fernandez is in the final year of his contract, so he might decide to go back to Spain at the end of the season as well. Even if that happens, the Nuggets would still get much needed depth for a very cheap price, even if it is only for a season. Worse case scenario, the Nuggets get some money for the buyout and still have Corey Brewer for depth. Best case scenario, Fernandez has a breakout year in a system that focuses on sharing the ball and finding the open shot. Fernandez, who has averaged just under 40% from behind the arc in his brief career in the NBA, could really benefit from having Andre Miller and Ty Lawson giving him the ball.

Corey Brewer is known more for his contributions as a Florida Gator when they won two national championships. Brewer was then selected seventh overall by the Minnesota Timberwolves and has never played up to his potential.

The 6-foot-9 small forward had a nice year in the 2009-2010 season when he started every game for the Timberwolves  averaging 13 points per game and establishing himself as a solid defender. Brewer followed that with a not so great year as his field goal percentage decreased from 43.1% to 38.4%. Brewer was traded from the Timberwolves to the Mavericks right before the playoffs and played well in a limited role averaging 5.3 points per game in only 11 minutes per game.

Brewer is  typical George Karl player because he is a very good defensive player and will serve as a solid backup to Danilo Gallinari. But one of the biggest reasons why Brewer was brought to Denver could be to guard division foe, Kevin Durant. Brewer is only one inch shorter and could prove to be an obstacle for Durant.

The Nuggets pulled off a great trade to replace the void left behind by Smith and Wilson Chandler as they went to play in China. The Nuggets have still shown interest in Chandler, who is a restricted free agent. The next article will focus on Nene's resigning.

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