While the Lakers held off on a trade, their Eastern Conference rivals pulled off a rather big one at the trade deadline.
Bolstering their bench for the sake of interior defense, the Boston Celtics sent center Kendrick Perkins and point guard Nate Robinson to Oklahoma City for small forward Jeff Green and center Nenad Krstic.
Green is the major name in the trade. The 24-year-old swingman is averaging 15 points per game, and suddenly gives the Celtics perhaps the best bench player of any team in the Eastern Conference.
To acquire Green, the Celtics sacrificed their best defensive big man in Perkins. By adding Krstic, the Celtics may see an improvement on offensive, but suddenly more pressure is on Kevin Garnett to keep opponents' big men off the glass and from scoring down low.
For Oklahoma City, the deal has probably been a long time coming. Green plays a somewhat similar style to star forward Kevin Durant in that they are both perimeter players who are about the same height.
The Thunder suddenly have a defensive presence in Perkins, and an improvement at back-up point guard in Robinson.
In certain situations, Robinson and point guard Russell Westbrook can play on the court at the same time, because Westbrook's athletics and length can sometimes be better suited at the shooting guard position against certain opponents.
The trade effects the Lakers, because both Oklahoma City and Boston may be the two teams that prevent the back-to-back champions from winning a third title in a row.
Both Boston and Oklahoma City are expected to be favorites to advance past the first round of the playoffs.