Fresh Trade Packages for NBA’s Top Deadline Targets
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The NBA trade market could be in smoke by the time the February 9 trade deadline hits. This year already seemed to be short of sellers, but that group could be even fewer than expected.
For example, recently extended Indiana Pacers center Myles Turner is officially “off the trade block,” according to Pacers head coach Rick Carlisle. According to Michael Scott of HoopsHype, the Detroit Pistons have told Bojan Bogdanovic that he is seen as “a core member of the team’s future”. , and we hope to re-sign him this summer. Washington Post.
Even rumor regular John Collins is considered “unlikely” to make a move after the Atlanta Hawks’ front office revamp, according to Action Network’s Matt Moore.
This does not mean that the deadline is guaranteed to be a dud. Maybe the above is a stance to push up the trading price. Swap season can be very lively without these players, especially when teams like the Toronto Raptors and Utah Jazz make offers for plug-and-play veterans.
Having created four deals around players whose names are still being talked about in the world of basketball, we are here to kick off the fictional bargaining and trading.
Surprise Winner of the Jakob Poeltl Sweepstakes
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The Oklahoma City Thunder will receive: Jacob Poeltl
The San Antonio Spurs will receive: Darius Bazley and a 2025 first-round pick (protected by lottery via MIA)
The Oklahoma City roster has been under some pressure from the front office this season. While there probably isn’t a deal that would turn Thunder into a competitor or send a prize large enough to the State of Sooner to justify deducting a large amount of property, they deserve a reasonably priced pick-up. increase.
Spurs center Jakob Poeltl would be perfect. He’s not a star, but he’s someone who can star in his role.
The Thunder are 26th in defensive rebounding percentage and 22nd in paint points allowed. Poeltl immediately helps in these specific areas. Not to mention he greatly improves their close range finishes (they are the worst shooting team in restricted areas) and uses pick-and-roll magic with Josh Guiddy and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander.
With this deal, OKC could go from being a back-end play-in tournament contender to a triumphant first-round opponent. Even without him, the Thunder posted his second-best net his rating (+-7.6) in the league this month. They’re not fun to face right now, and with a little more time to develop, this club could be in the conference for another season or two.
Poeltl needs a new contract this summer, but the Thunder should have no problem paying him. He’s not even three years older than Gilgeous his Alexander, and Poeltl’s presence could spare 2022 No. 2 overall pick Chet his Holmgren from wear and tear inside the NBA. .
According to Jared Weiss of The Athletic, the Spurs reportedly want two first-round picks for Poeltl, but perhaps they’ll see this as a good compromise.
Darius Bazley is a 22-year-old recent first-round pick (No. 23 in 2019) with elite physical tools and, to sum it all up, a towering two-way ceiling. This particular draft pick (OKC has plenty of other draft picks they could provide instead if needed) is also of interest as it only has lottery protection for his one year and will be unprotected in 2026. I am intrigued. It could look dramatically different by then.
Denver trades Bones Highlands for defense, depth
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The Minnesota Timberwolves will receive: Bones Hyland, Zeke Nagy, Ish Smith
What the Denver Nuggets Receive: Taurean Prince, Naz Reid, 2023 2nd Round Pick (via NYK) and 2028 2nd Round Pick
Last season, Bones Hyland was selected to the All-Rookie Second Team starting 26th overall in the 2021 NBA Draft. He also scored his double-digit points in three of his five playoff games in Denver. This season, he increased his output to 22.3 points and 5.5 assists per 36 minutes, while his shooting percentage was 37.9% from the deep and 86.3% in his stripes for charity.
Considering he’s only 22 and has only 100 games in his NBA career, you might think he’s earned the keeper status, but that doesn’t seem to be the case. According to Yahoo Sports’ Jake Fisher, the Nuggets are looking to buy Hyland for a “defensive frontcourt player” and possibly a “first-round pick.”
Perhaps Minnesota will deliver on that, or at least land in the general range of its asking price. He’s still considered a big Highland supporter.”
The Hyland offers a wealth of shot making, upside and perimeter shooting. If the Wolves see anything close to star potential in him, this could be a no-brainer, especially if they aren’t planning on paying D’Angelo Russell in free agency this summer. We get the chance to capitalize on the potential of another Connery draft pick, Zeke Nagy, and add Ish Smith’s veteran guard.
In return, Denver got Taurian Prince’s 3-and-D wing, Naz Reed’s high-end backup big man, and a pair of second-round picks. If the Nuggets don’t see Hyland as a long-term fit, it’s going to be quite a burden.
Prince is a 6-foot-7-inch swingman who can hang most of his wings defensively and is a career 37.3% three-point shooter. In his career he has scored three goals per 36 minutes. Both managed to hold off Denver’s rotation role in the playoffs.
Solve Jae Crowder’s puzzle
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The Miami Heat will receive: Jay Crowder
What the Phoenix Suns Receive: Josh Richardson and Max Strass
The San Antonio Spurs will receive: Nikola Jovic, Duncan Robinson and Phoenix 2023 first-round picks (Top 5 protected)
A number of teams, including the Suns, could use a player like Jae Crowder. That’s one of the issues complicating his long-term exit from Phoenix. Not many (or none) do.
3 teams, 5 players, 1 pick swap might be as easy as this solution gets.
According to Shams Charania of The Athletic, Heat has long been associated with the Crowder Sweepstakes and has an interest in the veteran swingman. They lost PJ Tucker last offseason and haven’t replaced him enough yet, and Crowder has similar defensive versatility, toughness and experience as a starter for his team in Miami, which reached the 2020 Finals. , and was able to fill that hole with his catch-and-launch shoot.
The Suns won’t find a direct replacement for Crowder in this trade, but it does address their need for boundary depth: Max Strus is full of energy and displays smart off-the-ball moves. Josh Richardson can fill anywhere between the 1 and 3 spots. Both are above-average shooters and have some flexibility on defense. Each could stay in the postseason rotation.
San Antonio, on the other hand, has two interesting assets here.
The chances of Phoenix landing in a play-in tournament are not zero. So the chances of winning the lottery are not zero. Nikola Jovic needs plenty of polish, but he shows his 6-foot-10-inch wing as his scorer and playmaker. That’s not a bad price to pay for making money and digesting Duncan his Robinson’s bloated contract.
Clippers get point guard
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The Los Angeles Clippers will receive: Fred VanVleet
The Toronto Raptors will receive: Luke Kennard, Brandon Boston Jr., Jason Preston, 2028 first-round pick
If there’s a big move this trade season, the Clippers should make it.
Their roster is almost championship ready, but they need to find an upgrade at point guard. The clock is ticking to find that floor general as he could become a free agent in 2024. may be willing to sell their assets.
He’s a lead guard who makes a difference they don’t have on the roster. He is also averaging 19 points and his 6 assists for the third straight season, which is on par with his seven other players.
VanVleet also shares championship history with Leonard as they teamed up in the Toronto flagship squad in 2018-19. Brokering this blockbuster could also host a championship. The Clippers are loaded with practically everywhere else, and this trade his package regularly with Luke Kennard he only needs one rotation.
Now, it’s fair to ask if Toronto is headed north enough north of the border to bite. (Technically, he holds a $22.8 million player option for next season, but it might take him at most a millisecond to turn it down.)
If Toronto is heading towards a future centered around Scotty Burns, this could be something of a long-term focused package.
Kennard is a plug-and-play sniper that the Raptors can keep or flip for an extra asset. Brandon Boston Jr. has a very promising flush as a 6’7-inch shotmaker. Jason Preston has proven little at this level, but his 6’4-inch frame is an interesting option to serve as the head of the Toronto Snake. Throw in an unprotected first-round pick down the road from a Championship or Bust team, and this should be enough for Toronto.
Statistics courtesy of Basketball Reference and NBA.com and are accurate through Monday. Salary information by Spotrac.
Zach Buckley covers the NBA for Bleacher Report. follow him on twitter Shinshin.