NBA trade season

Devizier

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 3, 2000
10,018
Somewhere
Let's kick things off with this article from the Ringer.

Usually around Christmas there are at least two or three teams that find their playoff hopes going up in smoke. Last season the Sixers, Nets, and Lakers were already at least eight games back from the eight seed in their respective conferences. This year there are none. Even the Sixers (7–23) and Nets (8–22), with the two worst records in basketball, are both within eight games of a playoff spot. Out west, the Suns and Mavs, both 9–22, are just five games out. With so many teams still in contention, Suns general manager Ryan McDonough believes the league is open for business, with teams hoping to make trades to bolster their playoff chances.

“If I had to guess I’d say there would be more early action this year,” McDonough told Bright Side of the Sun. “Where teams are saying, ‘Alright, we’re not going to wait until February, the trade deadline. Let’s do a deal in mid-December and solidify ourselves that extra 2-plus months to integrate a guy and climb up the standings to make sure we are in the playoffs.’”
O'Connor proceeds to list what he considers three interesting trade candidates: Blake Griffin, Andrew Bogut, and Rajon Rondo. I would argue that list actually contains one interesting trade candidate in the form of Blake Griffin:

The Clippers are 2–3 since Blake Griffin underwent “minor” surgery on his right knee, the first reported injury to his right leg after he suffered a long list of injuries to his left leg. Griffin will be out for a chunk of games for the third consecutive season, and the Clippers tend to perform well without him. Since the 2013–14 season, they’re 44–27 without Griffin. By comparison, the Clips are 16–15 without Chris Paul over that same time frame.
He doesn't offer any trade partners for Griffin, though (he has plenty for Bogut). Griffin's potential opt-out makes any deal pretty tricky.
 

DrewDawg

Dorito Dink
SoSH Member
Dec 16, 2010
36,622
If *more* teams are in contention (and I'd quibble with things like the Nets being within 8 games as meaningful), wouldn't that hamper trades, since, by his metric, these teams are still "close"?

If that 8 games back means anything, then why would teams closer than that deal? Don't you need more teams out of it that are willing to trade?
 

Cellar-Door

Member
SoSH Member
Aug 1, 2006
14,779
If *more* teams are in contention (and I'd quibble with things like the Nets being within 8 games as meaningful), wouldn't that hamper trades, since, by his metric, these teams are still "close"?

If that 8 games back means anything, then why would teams closer than that deal? Don't you need more teams out of it that are willing to trade?
Not necessarily, there may be more teams willing to move big for small and vice versa without one team needing picks.
 

Grin&MartyBarret

Member
SoSH Member
Oct 2, 2007
4,930
East Village, NYC
There are a handful of other interesting names that the Ringer article doesn't touch on.

Brook Lopez is likely available. There's already some buzz that Charlotte is interested.

The Hawks will also listen on Paul Milsap, supposedly.

Goran Dragic doesn't really make sense in Miami anymore.

And I also think Portland's going to have to do something, and that McCollum will end up available.
 

edoug

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 15, 2005
2,216
What kind of deal can the Nets do that makes any kind of sense?
 

Big John

lurker
Dec 9, 2016
1,806
In the past many trades were done for financial reasons. This year virtually every franchise is flush with cash so I would expect a slow trading season.
 

edoug

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 15, 2005
2,216
Moving Booker and/or Bogdanovic for youth/picks makes sense. Brook Lopez if they can get enough for him.
The Celts trade kind of muddies things up doesn't it? Can any or all those player bring in enough talent (minus two likely lottery picks) to give them any confidence they'll be respectable before the end of the decade? The new CBA doesn't seem to help matters.
 

bosox79

Member
SoSH Member
Dec 22, 2002
10,338
Why would the sixers or Mavs want to do that? And how does it help the Sixers logjam of centers?
 

CreedBratton

Member
SoSH Member
Dec 6, 2009
3,037
wouldn't the best way for the Nets to get back a lottery first is to trade Lopez to Sixers or Mavs for their first? say Nerlens Noel + 1st for Lopez

Should help Sixers win now...
I can't see the Sixers giving up Noel & a 1st for just Lopez but you are right that's the type of move both should be targeting.
 

cheech13

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 5, 2006
1,284
Moving Booker and/or Bogdanovic for youth/picks makes sense. Brook Lopez if they can get enough for him.
Why exactly would they want to do this? I can't see Booker or Bogdanovic fetching much more than a late first or early second round pick. That makes them a lot worse today and probably not any better in the future.

Lopez? Yes, I could see him being available, but they'd need to get back a good package of picks and/or players to make it palatable and I don't see an obvious match. Maybe a team like Portland gets desperate.
 

Cellar-Door

Member
SoSH Member
Aug 1, 2006
14,779
Why exactly would they want to do this? I can't see Booker or Bogdanovic fetching much more than a late first or early second round pick. That makes them a lot worse today and probably not any better in the future.

Lopez? Yes, I could see him being available, but they'd need to get back a good package of picks and/or players to make it palatable and I don't see an obvious match. Maybe a team like Portland gets desperate.
1sts are 1sts, and any first is more valuable to a team 2-5 years from playoff contention than a 29 year old role player on a 2 year deal, or a 27 year old role player on an expiring deal.

Those players are both unlikely to have any chance at being on a Brooklyn playoff team, so why wouldn't they want to move them to replenish their draft pick stock? I mean, who cares if they are worse today? Is it of any benefit to Brooklyn to finish 3rd worst instead of worst?
 

cheech13

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 5, 2006
1,284
I mean, who cares if they are worse today? Is it of any benefit to Brooklyn to finish 3rd worst instead of worst?
Yes, I think there's tangible benefit to being just bad instead of historically bad. The Celtics already have their picks so there is no near-term reward from tanking. Everything they do should be with an eye toward making the current team incrementally better. If you just pack it in for the next three 3-5 years you run the risk of running off your fan base and making your team unpalatable to potential free agents.

The calculus changes if someone offers something of real value for any of your players, but marginal picks that have little chance to turn into future contributors aren't moving the needle. I have a hard time seeing them even getting a first for Booker or Bogdanovic to be honest.
 

Papelbon's Poutine

Homeland Security
SoSH Member
Dec 4, 2005
17,748
Portsmouth, NH
They're already clear of being 'historically bad' unless they don't win another game the rest of the season. And even if those deals secured that - which they wouldn't - being 8-74 as opposed to, say, 20-62, isn't making a discernible difference to their attendance or fan base nor does a FA care. They draw off who they are playing that night and will until they are good. Like playoff contention good and that's a long way off and far past when anyone on the roster will still be around. They should be punting any asset they have down the road.
 

Cellar-Door

Member
SoSH Member
Aug 1, 2006
14,779
Yeah the idea that you'd rather win 2-3 more games over getting a first round pick in a deep draft is crazy.
 

mcpickl

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 23, 2007
3,247
Why exactly would they want to do this? I can't see Booker or Bogdanovic fetching much more than a late first or early second round pick. That makes them a lot worse today and probably not any better in the future.

Lopez? Yes, I could see him being available, but they'd need to get back a good package of picks and/or players to make it palatable and I don't see an obvious match. Maybe a team like Portland gets desperate.
I could see Cleveland giving up their late first for Booker to give them some size and take some Frye/Jefferson minutes. I'd take that if I'm Brooklyn. I'd act quickly to move too, before other dudes come available. Philly should make that offer with Ilyasova as well.
 

cheech13

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 5, 2006
1,284
They are $40 million under the projected cap for 2017-18. They should be calling around to the underperforming, over-the-cap teams (Portland, Washington, Detroit, etc.) and offering to eat a bad contract of two in exchange for picks. To me that's a better use of resources than trading a useful 25 MPG player for a second round lottery ticket that is unlikely to ever contribute.
 
Last edited:

Papelbon's Poutine

Homeland Security
SoSH Member
Dec 4, 2005
17,748
Portsmouth, NH
Well, the cap rising so much means everyone has cap room coming. So the teams you list aren't very likely to spend an asset to dump a contract that won't impact the composition of their team.

Edit: and a 25 minute player that will be gone before they have any real shot of decency is worth nothing to them. Even less then a lottery ticket.
 

CreedBratton

Member
SoSH Member
Dec 6, 2009
3,037
Even with the rising cap, Portland is going to trade, or try too at least, one of their "core". Likely Allen crabbe. Not sure who would want that contract but nets did sign him to an offer sheet.
 

cheech13

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 5, 2006
1,284
The cap is going up, but only from $95 million to $103 million and very few teams will be able to work their way to max money. It won't be the flood of money we saw last offseason. Detroit, Portland and Washington, for instance, have no cap room going into next year. Those teams had playoff aspirations and I can't see them standing pat all year with their current rosters.
 

mcpickl

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 23, 2007
3,247
They are $40 million under the projected cap for 2017-18. They should be calling around to the underperforming, over-the-cap teams (Portland, Washington, Detroit, etc.) and offering to eat a bad contract of two in exchange for picks. To me that's a better use of resources than trading a useful 25 MPG player for a second round lottery ticket that is unlikely to ever contribute.
Why can't they do both?

It's probably optimal. Have the bad contract guy take the minutes of the guy you're shipping out.
 

Devizier

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 3, 2000
10,018
Somewhere
The thing is, Lopez has a huge cap figure. Contending teams just can't afford to slough off the kinds of players it would take to match up in a trade. I don't think he's going anywhere.
 
Jul 15, 2005
1,974
Chicago
I could see Cleveland giving up their late first for Booker to give them some size and take some Frye/Jefferson minutes. I'd take that if I'm Brooklyn. I'd act quickly to move too, before other dudes come available. Philly should make that offer with Ilyasova as well.
Wasn't Channing Frye the Cavs big acquisition last season? Cavs are stuck with him for 2 more seasons (quite the questionable trade last trade deadline)
 

the moops

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 19, 2016
2,253
Saint Paul, MN
Isn't the best route to trade Lopez simply for the cap space? And hope that you can convince someone (or sometwo) in next years free agency to sign on as faces of the new Nets?
 

the moops

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 19, 2016
2,253
Saint Paul, MN
Wasn't Channing Frye the Cavs big acquisition last season? Cavs are stuck with him for 2 more seasons (quite the questionable trade last trade deadline)
Meh. They gave up a late first in 2018, and the corpse of Anderson Varejao for a guy that offers them a serious 3 pt threat. He is shooting 46% from three this year. I think they are happy with the deal.
 

cheech13

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 5, 2006
1,284
Wasn't Channing Frye the Cavs big acquisition last season? Cavs are stuck with him for 2 more seasons (quite the questionable trade last trade deadline)
I think they've been more than happy with that acquisition. He had some moments in the playoffs last year plus he was a hedge against Mozgov leaving in free agency, which ultimately happened.
 

cheech13

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 5, 2006
1,284
Isn't the best route to trade Lopez simply for the cap space? And hope that you can convince someone (or sometwo) in next years free agency to sign on as faces of the new Nets?
Eh, they are still below the salary floor right now and have gobs of cap space next year. They just aren't that attractive to free agents. You could dump Lopez for space but you'd probably end up committing more money to a worse player.
 

nighthob

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 15, 2005
7,837
Yes, I think there's tangible benefit to being just bad instead of historically bad. The Celtics already have their picks so there is no near-term reward from tanking. Everything they do should be with an eye toward making the current team incrementally better. If you just pack it in for the next three 3-5 years you run the risk of running off your fan base and making your team unpalatable to potential free agents.
The near term reward for trading older roleplayers with one foot out the door for draft picks is that the 19-23 year old roleplayers you're drafting might still be there when you next make the playoffs. In a draft as stacked as 2017 even picks in the 25-45 range carry the opportunity for being competent NBA roleplayers.

What there's no real reward for is eschewing draft picks in order to win 24 games rather than 21.
 

bosox79

Member
SoSH Member
Dec 22, 2002
10,338
The thing is, Lopez has a huge cap figure. Contending teams just can't afford to slough off the kinds of players it would take to match up in a trade. I don't think he's going anywhere.
The Bucks could do something with Greg Monroe and Larry Sanders but I'm not sure what they could offer of worth to Brooklyn outside of maybe Thon Maker.

edit: And Brogdon.
 

nighthob

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 15, 2005
7,837
Larry Sanders was released, he's an unrestricted free agent. Monroe and a draft pick would likely be on the table though.
 

gammoseditor

also had a stroke
SoSH Member
Jul 17, 2005
3,259
Somerville, MA
Googling Paul George today has three top stories about how he's not having any fun this year. I doubt he gets moved but you have to figure one of these eastern teams decide that they aren't going anywhere with one star player and that next years #1 pick would be a franchise changer.
 

DeJesus Built My Hotrod

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 24, 2002
29,495
Googling Paul George today has three top stories about how he's not having any fun this year. I doubt he gets moved but you have to figure one of these eastern teams decide that they aren't going anywhere with one star player and that next years #1 pick would be a franchise changer.
"New phone, who dis?" but some executive name Larry Bird is on record saying that Paul George is not available and that anything Indiana does will be to build around him.

If the Celtics are going to acquire a star, the most likely candidate is Jimmy Butler. Or maybe...
 

nighthob

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 15, 2005
7,837
I was looking at that earlier today, right now I think that Fultz and Jackson have separated themselves from the crowd, and that's no insult to the rest of the top 8, they're just that good (Smith might be, but I really haven't seen him against premium opposition yet). There's a real chance that George refuses to sign an extension this summer and indicates to the pacers that he's leaving.

So Boston might be able to work something around Thomas/Jackson/ and one of either Crowder or Brown for George. Thomas would help keep the Pacers competitive while Jackson and Myles Turner continued to develop and become the future of the franchise, along with their possible lottery pick this year (since George is unhappy and they're bunched in the East's 8-12 band).
 

the moops

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 19, 2016
2,253
Saint Paul, MN
So Boston might be able to work something around Thomas/Jackson/ and one of either Crowder or Brown for George.
Jae Crowder is a nice player and all, but he is not going to carry anything close to what the potential of Brown offers. If a star is traded, it is to rebuild. You don't rebuild with Jae Crowder.
 

sox311

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 30, 2004
1,656
That's what she said.
Isaiah just dropped 52, I am having a harder and harder time believing that he would ever be offered in a trade. This could be a Pedro/Johnny Damon thing where, if we have the future pieces we let Isaiah walk instead of resign him, but I am just having trouble seeing him being dealt. Or Danny extends him next year and he gets four more years here. I see either extending him or letting him walk being the roads taken. I know Danny has the balls, but I don't know if they are that big.

Steph, Russ, Lebron, KD, Davis, Kawhai, Towns, Kristaps, Giannias are the nine I would send that pick packing for. George, Butler are possibly and Kyrie and Dame are the other two if we moved Isaiah for another big piece.

The only way to get that super star is to draft that super star these days. Or draft well at the very least and try to be the 03 Pistons in three years. But by then Isaiah may be a step slower too...
 

DeJesus Built My Hotrod

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 24, 2002
29,495
Isaiah just dropped 52, I am having a harder and harder time believing that he would ever be offered in a trade. This could be a Pedro/Johnny Damon thing where, if we have the future pieces we let Isaiah walk instead of resign him, but I am just having trouble seeing him being dealt. Or Danny extends him next year and he gets four more years here. I see either extending him or letting him walk being the roads taken. I know Danny has the balls, but I don't know if they are that big.

Steph, Russ, Lebron, KD, Davis, Kawhai, Towns, Kristaps, Giannias are the nine I would send that pick packing for. George, Butler are possibly and Kyrie and Dame are the other two if we moved Isaiah for another big piece.

The only way to get that super star is to draft that super star these days. Or draft well at the very least and try to be the 03 Pistons in three years. But by then Isaiah may be a step slower too...
I would put Jabari Parker in the second group. He is for real.
 

ALiveH

Member
SoSH Member
Apr 23, 2010
1,087
The Kevin Love trade is the best most recent comp for what a superstar package would look like.

Kevin Love was considered a clear-cut top 10 player at the time (some thought he was top-5 at the time, some thought he was really overrated due to lack of defense, but split the middle and consensus is probably in the top-10).

Wiggins was the #1 overall pick, at worst the equivalent of a top-3 in this year's draft. The other pieces were Anthony Bennett (young talented prospect but with the baggage of being labeled a bust of a #1 overall pick the year before); and Thadeus Young (in his prime, but basically a fungible, just OK player).

If we were trading a similarly valued package for a disgruntled star on a team that was about to go full rebuild (say jimmy butler for sake of argument), the equivalent package might be the 2017 Nets pick; Bradley or Smart or our 2018 1st; their pick of one of our overseas stash guys or another prospect on our roster getting no run; and salary filler getting few minutes (like Zeller).

I just don't see any good reason for a team to trade a superstar for a package of picks & prospects unless their backs are really against the wall (like the Love, Harden and Garnett trades).
 

Devizier

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 3, 2000
10,018
Somewhere
Bennett and Young were just filler in the Love trade. Cleveland needed ballast to make the salary matching work.
 

the moops

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 19, 2016
2,253
Saint Paul, MN
I am not sure this is really an apt comparison. Cleveland HAD to make a move. They had just signed Lebron, and I am sure there was an open discussion with him that they would sign/trade for another impact player to make his homecoming that much more special.

Also, Anthony Bennett had nowhere near the value of a Bradley or Smart. Our 2018 is more in line, but not sure why that is lumped in with those 2 guys, for they are worth far more than a late first round pick.
 
Jul 15, 2005
1,974
Chicago
Isaiah just dropped 52, I am having a harder and harder time believing that he would ever be offered in a trade. This could be a Pedro/Johnny Damon thing where, if we have the future pieces we let Isaiah walk instead of resign him, but I am just having trouble seeing him being dealt. Or Danny extends him next year and he gets four more years here. I see either extending him or letting him walk being the roads taken. I know Danny has the balls, but I don't know if they are that big.

Steph, Russ, Lebron, KD, Davis, Kawhai, Towns, Kristaps, Giannias are the nine I would send that pick packing for. George, Butler are possibly and Kyrie and Dame are the other two if we moved Isaiah for another big piece.

The only way to get that super star is to draft that super star these days. Or draft well at the very least and try to be the 03 Pistons in three years. But by then Isaiah may be a step slower too...
should we ask: what assets can we get for trading IT now? would Doc be desperate enough to try to win this year before Blake and CP3 opt out?
 

moondog80

heart is two sizes two small
SoSH Member
Sep 20, 2005
5,197
Also, Anthony Bennett had nowhere near the value of a Bradley or Smart. Our 2018 is more in line, but not sure why that is lumped in with those 2 guys, for they are worth far more than a late first round pick.
2018 second round, maybe. Anthony Bennett was already regarded as a colossal bust.