NBA Trading Rumours: Who is heading where and why?

Denver Nuggets Media Day

As teams think about which moves will boost their rosters, there are a number of suggestions already in the works with names like Giannis Antetokounmpo and Andre Iguodala amongst the mix. 

But firstly, news recently broke that NBA legend Chris Paul is unlikely to be traded by Oklahoma City this season. Rumours the 34-year-old would be traded surfaced almost immediately after the Thunder acquired him from Houston in exchange for Russel Westbrook.  

OKC were unable to shift Paul during the offseason, a factor that’s playing in their favour more with each passing fixture as the point guard has averaged 15.6 points, 4.2 rebounds and 6.3 assists. 

But his importance in keeping up the Thunder’s stats is only half of the issue. Teams would have been lining up front and centre to snatch George had it not been for his hefty salary. He will be pushing 35 by the time a trade comes around which makes the decision more of a gamble as interested teams would have to release a promising younger player and future picks.

Paul currently has two years remaining on his 2018 four-year, $160 million contract and some even believe he could end up fulfilling the whole term with OKC. 

On the radar for the Toronto Raptors is Giannis Antetokounmpo as we wonder whether they’re pinning hopes of another championship in the future on the shoulders of the All-star. The Raps are expected to preserve their 2020 cap space in order to pursue the deal with key players Marc Gasol and Serge Ibaka in the final seasons of their contracts and Kyle Lowry’s expiring in 2021. An acquisition like Antetokounmpo could persuade them to sign extensions or even put them up as viable trades for the Greek Freak. 

There are further rumours that Toronto is looking to re-sign Fred VanVleet this offseason but are extremely aware of their salary cap. VanVleet has fallen into a major role during his second season and in the off-chance that Lowry is shifted before the deadline, he would have a shot at the point guard spot.   

Toronto Raptors v Chicago Bulls

Over at Golden State, the Warriors are unlikely to trade D'Angelo Russell this season. The 23-year-old guard headed to the Warriors this past summer as part of the Kevin Durant sign-and-trade with the Brooklyn Nets. But the All-star has been labelled a trade chip rather than a contributor to a championship run. However, the current state of the Warriors Injury-plagued roster limits what they can do as Russell is one of the only players holding up their stats. 

Head Coach, Steve Kerr, is proud of how Russell has stepped up to become a key player on offence and raises concerns about the impact constant-trading may have on the All-Star’s game.
From Cleveland, the Cavaliers are open to offers regarding Kevin Love as they look to trade him and with seven players holding expiring contracts on the roster, it’s no wonder they’re officially open for business. Love along with Tristan Thompson could be two players on the move.  

Dubbed a player who “won’t break the bank”, Love has garnered interest from the likes of the Boston Celtics and, more recently, the Miami Heat. But Miami have to ask themselves to important questions: Would they part ways with Justice Winslow to make the trade? Would love be enough to make the roster a serious contender going forward? 

At 31-years-old, interested teams must assess the contribution Love could bring against the backdrop of his $90 million contract over the next three years.

Moving back across to the West Coast, the Lakers and Clippers may have a showdown on their hands as both Los Angeles teams remain interested in acquiring Andre Iguodala. The Memphis Grizzlies are holding the 35-year-old veteran wing in limbo as they weigh up options to trade him.
Since transferring from Golden State in summer, Iguodala is currently enjoying a $17.2 million contract with the Grizzlies who have yet to play him this season as they prioritise their younger players. 

However, the Clippers may hold one advantage, being able to trade a first-round pick in the trade, a luxury the Lakers do not possess as the cap-tied team pin their hopes on Iguodala being cut loose into the open market. 

2019 NBA Finals - Game Five

Moving across to New Orleans, the Pelicans have shown some interest in trading Jrue Holiday and J.J. Redick as there is no shortage of teams keeping tabs on their availability. However, they are not letting Holiday go for anything less than a “significant price”. 

Holiday initially wanted to remain with the Pelicans until they recently began their rebuilding scheme of which he wants out. His trade value is expected to be higher than it was last season as his options to slot in almost anywhere in the league seem limitless.

Finally, despite teams willing to do trades with the Denver Nuggets, it appears they are not going to let go of Michael Porter Jr. Porter sat out the entire 2018/19 season due to back surgery and missed the summer league due to a knee sprain, but, apparently, the 21-year-old is untouchable. The Nuggets, who already possess a young team are hoping Porter excels to become their power forward of the future.  

Denver Nuggets Media Day

However, it remains unclear whether the Nuggets will engage in trade talks surrounding Porter or not as there must be a reason for them driving up his interest. We also know that Denver may be looking to add a star player to their roster in order to increase their chance at a championship as although they do have a healthy team, they still struggle to make an impact. 

With seven weeks remaining until the trade deadline, rumours surrounding possible additions and losses are beginning to get interesting. Stick with Give Me Sport NBA as we keep you up-to-date.

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