With the NBA trade deadline just a two weeks away, it’s time to look at some players who could be moved before the afternoon of March 15th. Last year, fellow WaiverWire writer Mike Aurigemma and I broke the news of several trades on our radio show Sports and More from Two to Fourand hopefully we can do something similar on the blog this season. Without further ado, here are some players (certainly there are more) who could be on the move.
Rajon Rondo, Boston Celtics- In a point guard-heavy league are the Celtics actually shopping a player who is arguably top five at that position? It appears that way. While I don’t think Rondo will actually be moved, this isn’t the first time his name has been brought in trade talks this year. Right before the start of the season, it was rumored that the Celtics had offered Rondo to the Thunder for Bodie from The Wire Russell Westbrook. Will he be traded? No.
Ray Allen, Boston Celtics- Now this seems more likely if the Celtics do decide to make a move or two. Allen’s shooting skills would be welcomed by every team and could be the missing key for some (Clippers?). Still, it seems the Celtics are undecided on if they want to strip it down and rebuild or push for another title this season. Will he be traded? No.
Michael Beasley, Minnesota Timberwolves- The former number two overall pick had recently been offered to the Lakers for just a first round pick, but Los Angeles turned down the offer because of salary concerns. The fact that Timberwolves are initiating trades indicates that Beasley will most likely be moved. It makes sense that Minnesota wants to move the forward, Beasley has an $8.5 million player option for next year and while the Timberwolves have certainly improved, they are still a few years away from being a serious threat. Will he be traded? Yes.
Steve Nash, Phoenix Suns- Steve Nash should be moved. It’s the right move for the Suns. While Nash isn’t the type of player to come out and demand a trade, he has recently said he would be open to one. Look, as much as we as fans tend to emphasize player-team loyalty, it doesn’t make sense for the Suns or for Steve Nash for him to stay past the trade deadline. His contract is up at the end of the year, and even if he stays for the rumored two-year contract, the Suns are still going to be a mediocre team during that period. The fact is that Phoenix doesn’t have any young talent to rebuild with. Why not trade Nash and try to get some? Because this is the same organization that let Amare Stoudemire walk and instead the money on a handful of role players. Will he be traded? No.
Raymond Felton, Portland Trailblazers- He’s already been traded twice in the last year, but he could be on the move again. Rumors are that Felton isn’t happy and the truth is, after a hot start, the Blazers really need a shake up to get things going again. There are a number of teams that could use a point guard upgrade (Lakers?) so don’t be surprised to see Felton in a different jersey in a few weeks. Will he be traded? Yes.
Monta Ellis, Golden State Warriors- Rumors emerged recently that the Magic are pursuing a trade for Ellis to pair him with Dwight Howard. Earlier this season, rumors emerged that the Warriors were looking to trade Ellis to the Magic for Howard. The Warriors do need to move either Ellis or Stephen Curry (who they are less likely to move) because they are very similar players who struggle defensively. While the Magic are interested in Ellis, it’s difficult to imagine them putting together a strong enough package. Outside of Ryan Anderson and Jameer Nelson, Orlando is full of players underperforming lucrative contracts. Will he be traded? No.
Lamar Odom, Dallas Mavericks- What a strange story this has been. First Odom wanted out of L.A. after being hurt by trade rumors and now it has been rumored that he wants to be bought out by Dallas. While it doesn’t look like he will be bought out, a trade is certainly possible. Will he be traded? Yes.
Leandro Barbosa, Toronto Raptors- Barbosa is in the final year of his contract and the Raptors seriously need to rebuild, so it makes sense to move him. He has proven in his career to be a streaky scorer who can shoot it from three. This is another player who could help out the Lakers or another team looking for another scoring guard off the bench. Will he be traded? Yes.
Chris Kaman, New Orleans Hornets- Can’t seem to get a grasp on this situation. Kaman stopped playing for a few games in mid-January so that the Hornets could trade him but nothing ever came of it, so Kaman joined the roster again. He’s put up solid numbers for the struggling hornets in his 27 games, averaging 12.0 points and 7.7 rebounds per game. You’d have to think there would be a team or two looking for front court depth that could make a move for Kaman (Sixers?)Will he be traded? Yes.
Dwight Howard, Orlando Magic- It seems likely the trade rumors will heat up in the next week or so, with likely potential suitors being the Nets, Warriors, Lakers, and perhaps even the Hawks. Will the trade happen? I don’t think so. The only way the Magic know that they lose Dwight Howard is if they move him. They didn’t do it with Shaq in the 90s and it burnt them. But the only chance Orlando has at keeping Dwight Howard for next chunk of his career is if they keep him past the trade deadline and risk him walking out on additional $30 million. You don’t trade away a franchise center in his prime. You just don’t. Will he be traded? No.