The NBA trade deadline is quickly approaching. A lot has been made about numerous high-profile players on the block.
Things will certainly start to heat up in the days and weeks leading up to the February 7 deadline. Please bookmark this page for continuing updates.
It’s in this that we give you the latest player rumors, teams in the market and a few potential trade scenarios.
- Kevin Love, Cleveland Cavaliers: Following a meltdown directed at general manager Koby Altman, rumors suggest that the Cavs are looking to move this five-time All-Star. In fact, they are asking him to show more maturity as the process plays out. Love is averaging 16.8 points and 10.2 rebounds on the season. He could fetch a decent return.
- Tristan Thompson, Cavaliers: Recent rumors suggest that the Toronto Raptors could be in play for Thompson, who is slated to become a free agent after the 2019-20 season. Thompson remains a force defensively. He’s also averaging a double-double at 12.2 points and 10.4 rebounds per game.
- Andre Drummond, Detroit Pistons: With Blake Griffin potentially lost for the season, it seems that Detroit could be looking ahead to the 2020-21 campaign. Drummond has been bandied about in trade talks surrounding the Atlanta Hawks. The All-Star is also in the midst of a tremendous season, averaging 17.5 points and 16.0 rebounds. His five-year, $127.2 million deal could be hard to move.
- Derrick Rose, Detroit Pistons: In the midst of a career resurgence, there’s a number of contending teams that would show interest in Rose if he is made available. The former league MVP is averaging 17.5 points and 5.8 assists on 48% shooting this season. His below-market two-year, $15 million contract also has to be seen as attractive for other teams.
- Marcus Morris, New York Knicks: One of many veterans the downtrodden Knicks signed to a short-term deal this past summer, Morris is playing some of his best basketball. The veteran forward is averaging 19.1 points and 5.5 rebounds on 47% shooting from distance. Any contending team would like a shot at adding Morris. New York is said to be demanding at least a first-round pick in return.
- Julius Randle, New York Knicks: It seems to be unreasonable to believe that the Knicks would get much for this struggling forward. Randle is shooting less than 30% from distance on the season and has taken a major step back since the team signed him to a three-year, $62.1 million deal back in July. Despite this, he’s still only 25 years old and is averaging 18 points to go with 9.1 rebounds per.
- Kyle Kuzma, Los Angeles Lakers: In the market for a point guard upgrade over Rajon Rondo, it looks like the Lakers are seriously considering moving this stud third-year forward. It just remains to be seen what type of offer they might get in return. Kuzma has regressed this season, taking a back seat to both LeBron James and Anthony Davis. But he has the track record of success and is seen as a major bargaining chip heading into the deadline.
- D’Angelo Russell, Golden State Warriors: It seems like the struggling Warriors are in a holding pattern with Russell. They want to see how the All-Star plays with the injured Stephen Curry before making a decision. Unlikely to be moved ahead of the trade deadline, there’s a chance Russell is traded this summer if the Dubs can get another star player in return. That’s been the biggest rumor in San Francisco.
- Hassan Whiteside, Portland Trail Blazers: Acquired from the Heat this past summer, Whiteside is a valuable trade chip in that he boasts a $27.1 million expiring contract. If Portland is looking to make a run, moving his deal is the best bet. The former All-Defensive Team performer is averaging 15.8 points, 14.0 rebounds and a league-high 2.9 blocks this season.
- Karl-Anthony Towns, Minnesota Timberwolves: Rumors out of 29 other NBA cities (not Minneapolis) continue to persist that KAT wants out of dodge. They say he’s unhappy with the under-performing ways of the organization. Even then, we find it highly unlikely that the Wolves will move their franchise cornerstone. At the very least, it’s the type of trade that takes plays during the summer months. There’s really nothing to see here.
- DeMar DeRozan, San Antonio Spurs: An impending free agent, San Antonio would be smart to move DeRozan as a way to help build for the future. At 15-20 on the season, that would make sense. DeRozan, 30, is averaging 21.7 points, 5.1 rebounds and 4.9 assists per game. He’d be a welcome addition for contending teams, even as a rental.
- LaMarcus Aldridge, San Antonio Spurs: Another player the Spurs would be smart to move, Aldridge has value on the trade block. He’s a proven All-Star with the capability of fitting into any scheme. The veteran also continues to be a consistent force, averaging 19-plus points each of the past three seasons. His $24 million cap hit for next season could be a sticking point.
- Andre Iguodala, Memphis Grizzlies: Still away from the Grizzlies as he looks for a buyout, it seems that this former NBA Finals MVP is more likely to be traded. Memphis has drawn a line in the sand since acquiring the veteran from Golden State this summer. Of those on this list, Iggy is the most likely to be dealt in February. It will be to a contending team, too.
- Chris Paul, Oklahoma City Thunder: Things are a bit more convoluted in OKC than when the Thunder first acquired CP3 from Houston in the James Harden trade. This surprising young team currently sits at 21-16 on the season. Even then, moving Paul and his contract is the best way forward. The future Hall of Famer is still playing great ball, averaging 16.6 points and 6.5 assists on a robust 47% shooting.
The big six
- A ton of teams have been bandied about on the trade market leading up to the February deadline. But here’s a look at six of the most noteworthy contenders attempting to upgrade.
Los Angeles Lakers
Sitting pretty at 30-7 on the season, Los Angeles can pick and choose what it wants to do in terms of an upgrade. The team has obviously been linked to Andre Iguodala. If the Lakers decide that moving Kyle Kuzma makes sense, Memphis could bite. Though, Los Angeles would likely want more than an aging veteran for Kuzma.
Reports out of Los Angeles indicate that the team is not happy with Rajon Rondo as an option moving forward this season. Moving Kuzma for an upgrade at point guard could make sense. Derrick Rose and Dennis Schroder make sense in this regard. Los Angeles has also been linked to the recently unretired Darren
Bucks general manager Jon Horst did well to maintain a strong bench when it looked like the NBA’s best team would lose multiple free agents this past summer. It has Milwaukee at a league-best 32-6 on the season.
Despite this, rumors persist that the Bucks are looking for an elite-level point guard to team up with reigning MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo. This would include moving Eric Bledsoe and cap fillers. It’s pure conjecture, but Chris Paul of the Thunder or New Orleans Pelicans star Jrue Holiday would be good fits.
Recent reports suggest that the Nuggets are in the market for rising Washington Wizards star Davis Bertans. This makes sense in that the stretch four would be a tremendous fit with Nikola Jokic, Paul Millsap and Jamal Murray. Bertans is shooting a robust 43% from distance this season.
The only question here is what Denver general manager Tim Connelly might be willing to offer up for someone of Bertans’ ilk. Could 2018 first-round pick Michel Porter Jr. be in the cards?
It’s no secret that Rockets general manager Daryl Morey is not afraid to make the big move. Just ask Russell Westbrook and Chris Paul. With Houston seemingly a step behind top contenders in the Western Conference, that could be the case ahead of February’s trade deadline.
The idea of potentially moving the expensive contracts of Eric Gordon, P.J. Tucker and/or Clint Capela to find a third star with Russ and James Harden might be appealing. For now, the Rockets have been linked to lesser-known role players.
Sixers head coach Brett Brown has talked about it at nearly every turn. Philly needs to shoot more threes and find a perimeter game if the team hopes to contend for a title.
The elephant in this room is Ben Simmons, who Brown has called out multiple times in the past for ignoring the three-point line. While a Simmons trade makes very little sense, we’re expecting Sixers general manager Elton Brand to pull off a trade. Heck, Simmons could be part of a larger blockbuster. But as of now, the status quo is not working for Philly.
It’s readily apparent that Dallas is looking for another big to go with Kristaps Porzingis. It also has the financial resources in the bloated contracts of Tim Hardaway Jr. and Courtney Lee to make a big move ahead of February’s trade deadline.
Boasting potential NBA MVP Luka Doncic, the time could be now for these Mavericks to make that dramatic move. It just remains to be seen if anyone of the ilk Mark Cuban and Co. are seeking is available.
Trades we’d like to see
Derrick Rose and Markieff Morris to the Lakers
We know the Rose and LeBron James relationship didn’t work out with Cleveland back in the day. But the point guard has upped his game big time over the past couple seasons.
Adding Rose to the mix to split time with Rondo would make sense. Bringing in Morris as a top-end reserve would also make sense. In return, the Lakers can offer up Kuzma and a cap filler to make this work.
Chris Paul to the Bucks
This would take a lot of work from a financial perspective. It would also leave Milwaukee thin on the bench. Even then, the idea of teaming Paul up with Giannis might be too sexy to pass up on. It would create an elite one-two tandem with Khris Middleton waiting in the wings (almost literally).
In order to make this work, Milwaukee would have to deal the bloated contracts of Eric Bledsoe, Brook Lopez and Ersan İlyasova as well as multiple first-round picks. It’s the definition of shooting your shot.
Zach LaVine to the Nuggets
We focused on this possibility before, but it makes a whole lot of sense. Gary Harris and Will Barton are not getting any better. They’re good players. They just don’t have that star appeal to go with Murray, Jokic and Millsap.
In adding LaVine to the mix, that would change a great deal. Denver also has a tremendous trade bait in that of Michael Porter Jr. From there, it would have to make the contracts match by offering up a combination of Mason Plumlee, Gary Harris and Jarami Grant.