Posted on June 21, 2017, by Travis Pulver
There are two times of year when you can almost count on a flurry of trades taking place in the NBA—near the trade deadline and as the NBA Draft approaches. Sure enough, with the draft just a few days away, the activity is starting to pick up.
The Boston Celtics and Philadelphia 76ers got the ball rolling when they exchanged draft picks. But a few other teams have decided to mix it up. If the rumor mill can be believed, there could be a few more before Thursday night.
Rumors began to fly following Paul George giving the Indiana Pacers some bad news that he could be dealt to the Cleveland Cavaliers. But it appears that talks have slowed already which will make it hard for a deal to get done.
George has made it clear that he would like to play for the Los Angeles Lakers which will make it hard for Indiana to get a good value in return since he will likely be with anyone (other than the Lakers) for just one season (the final of his current contract).
The Lakers and Pacers have been engaged in talks for George. With the trade they did pull off Tuesday, they could be preparing to make a move for him. Los Angeles sent D’Angelo Russell and Timothy Mozgov to the Brooklyn Nets in return for Brook Lopez and the 27th pick in Thursday night’s draft.
Rumor has it the Pacers want the second pick in Thursday’s draft or the player the Lakers got with the second pick last year, Brandon Ingram. But the Lakers are not willing to move either. One rumored proposal has the them thinking about sending the 27th and 28th picks in Thursday’s draft along with Julias Randle and Jordan Clarkson.
CBS Sports has reported that the Lakers tried to trade the No. 2 pick to the Sacramento Kings for the No. 5 and No. 10 picks. They would have then used one of those picks in an attempt to trade for George—but the deal didn’t happen.
But the Lakers could also look to stand pat and make a move for George and/or LeBron James next offseason. After Brook Lopez’s contract expires they’ll have around $60 million in cap space–so why not?
Los Angeles and Brooklyn were not the only two teams that had trade winds blow through Tuesday. It appears that the Atlanta Hawks have decided that Dwight Howard isn’t worth the $70.5 million deal they signed him to last summer. Rather than continue to overpay him, they have shipped him and the 31st pick in Thursday’s draft to Charlotte.
The Hornets are sending Miles Plumlee, Marco Belinelli and the 41st pick to Atlanta.
As interesting as these deals are, they are not the most intriguing ones that there have been rumors about. Along with their pursuit of Paul George, it appears the Cavs have been trying to pry Jimmy Butler away from the Chicago Bulls. However, Butler has told the Bulls he wants to stay so they will likely not move him.
A surprising rumor surfaced late Tuesday night. It appears that the Los Angeles Clippers could be trying to move DeAndre Jordan. Just two years after getting him to back off of a handshake deal with the Mavericks, they are looking to unload him.
So far, the Clippers have talked with the Phoenix Suns. A possible trade sending Jordan to Phoenix and Tyson Chandler and Thursday’s No. 4 pick was discussed.
Will any other deals happen before the draft starts? Who knows. Teams do tend to get a little crazy prior to draft time. So there is no telling what could be coming.