7:20 pm, January 10th, 2014
The NBA feels like a three-legged stool these days. Lopsided. Dangerously unstable. Not particularly exciting (unless someone falls off it, of course). We feel like it’s high time for one of those “holy shit” trade deadlines, where a quarter of the league flip-flops, and every team gets in on the action. We’ve looked over most of the B.S. out there, and found a few guys whose names continually pop up whenever the deadline is discussed, as well as a a mega-deal we think the Chicago Bulls might be interested in (
corroborated by ESPN’s Chad Ford).
1.Omir Asik to the Nets
With Brook Lopez out and Prokhorov's free spending attitude combined with Asik's agent's desire for a trade -- we think there's potential here. Something will get done with Asik either way, and the Nets need to fill that void at the five.
2.The Minnesota Timberwolves to ______.
Kevin Love wants out, Ricky Rubio and Nikola Pekovic probably do too -- and all three have a ton of value. Considering the T-Wolves struggles this season and a recently hired, job-secure Flip Saunders is calling the shots, we wouldn't be surprised if any one of these guys was sent to a quasi-contender for some future assets. Leading candidates for Rubio and Love remain the Los Angeles Lakers (whom Love has more or less said he will sign with in 2015).
3.Ben Gordon to the Sixers
Sadly, Gordon's production and inflated expiring contract render him a cap clearing move for any takers. Expect interest from teams like the Sixers, Bulls, Bucks, or especially, the Celtics -- who would gladly ship Kris Humphries to the Bobcats (who expressed interest in him last season with Brooklyn).
4.Andre Miller to the Kings
Miller and coach Brian Shaw got into it, now the 37-year-old has got to go. Simple as that. The Kings have offered Jimmer Fredette and a future draft pick, though it's clear the Nuggets want a big man in any deal they make.
5.Danny Granger to the Suns or Cavaliers
With Eric Bledsoe out indefinitely and Phoenix neck and neck with the Mavericks for the last playoff spot, we like the fit. The Cavaliers find themselves in a similar situation, however trading Granger within the division isn't as appealing as an out of conference deal.
6.Carlos Boozer, Joakim Noah, or Kirk Hinrich to the Celtics
With Bulls in full-on tank mode, ESPN's Chad Ford speculates that all three of these guys are on the market (though the Bulls still have an amnesty and are likely to use it on Boozer this offseason). Destinations for Noah include Portland for LaMarcus Aldridge, and Boston or Phoenix for draft picks. All have reportedly inquired (and we expect the other 28 teams to inquire because both of these guys are immediate impact players). Hinrich is thought to be headed to the Warriors for someone like Toney Douglas looking to back up Stephen Curry.
Jimmy Butler is thought to be off the block at this time.