It is only early January and big named NBA players have already been on the move. Rajon Rondo is now a member of the Dallas Mavericks. J.R. Smith and Iman Shumpert are now on the Cleveland Cavaliers sending Dion Waiters to the Oklahoma City Thunder. There are many teams looking to explode their roster making a multitude of players available while others are looking to add to a championship caliber team. Let’s take a look at who could be on the move before the trade deadline at 3:00 PM on February 19th:
Goran Dragic, Phoenix Suns: Goran Dragic is a free agent at the end of the season and is in for a big payday. The Phoenix Suns would love to keep him but for the second season in a row it looks to be the Suns are a playoff worthy team that is just out of the playoffs. Eric Bledsoe is also a point guard, Isaiah Thomas is playing on the Suns bench, and Tyler Ennis was used with a first round pick in last years draft so there are options past Dragic. They have been playing very well this year, it’s just that the West is stacked. With Deron Williams potentially being out he is now the best point guard available drastically increasing his value.
Potential Suitors: Houston Rockets, Miami Heat, Atlanta Hawks
Prediction: Houston Rockets
Deron Williams, Brooklyn Nets: Deron Williams is currently out indefinatly. He will be re-evaluated in a week. If he has a rib fracture he will not be traded. He had a great start to the season and then the numbers started to dip. Recently the Nets were in deep trade talks with the Sacramento Kings to acquire Williams. His trade value is deteriorating but could still be moved if his re-evaluation goes well. Williams has had the worst of luck on the Brooklyn Nets.
Potential Suitors: Houston Rockets, Sacramento Kings, Miami Heat
Prediction: Sacramento Kings (If Healthy)
Brook Lopez, Brooklyn Nets: Brook Lopez is a dominant center in the league when healthy…….but he seems to always in some way get injured. Since his return from injury which sidelined him for almost the entire month of December, he has put up 16.6 points and 7.3 rebounds per game. He looks healthy and the Nets are looking to rebuild after trading a majority of their future first round picks to the Boston Celtics for Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett.
Potential Suitors: Oklahoma City Thunder, Phoenix Suns, Miami Heat, Los Angeles Lakers
Prediction: Oklahoma City Thunder
Jeff Green, Boston Celtics: Jeff Green is having the best season of his career currently on the worst team he has ever played for. Jeff Green is averaging 17.6 points per game this season but has dipped to 13.0 when Rajon Rondo was traded to the Dallas Mavericks. Green can hit the three and spread the court. Defense is also one of his strengths. I have been saying for years, Jeff Green is great at guarding players like LeBron James and Kevin Durant. He also has playoff experience. The Celtics are going no where and Green is guaranteed to be traded.
Potential Suitors: Los Angeles Clippers, Memphis Grizzlies, Portland Trail Blazers, Atlanta Hawks, Milwaukee Bucks
Prediction: Memphis Grizzlies
Roy Hibbert/David West, Indiana Pacers: These two players have a lot left in the tank on a team that is going no where. When Paul George got injured over the summer, all of the teams pressure was placed on West and Hibbert’s shoulders. This team as predicted is not in the playoffs and is currently the East’s nine seed. If they do make the playoffs, their lack of scoring will prevent them from beating the East’s best. Hibbert and West have deep playoff and experience and can help a team that is ready to make a playoff run. Both players have a player option in the offseason and if the Pacers don’t get any better they may reject the offer. I am curious to see what the Pacers do.
Roy Hibbert Suitors: Boston Celtics, Phoenix Suns, Miami Heat, Oklahoma City Thunder
Prediction: Phoenix Suns
David West Suitors: Toronto Raptors, Miami Heat, Golden State Warriors
Prediction: Toronto Raptors
Greg Monroe, Detroit Pistons: No one benefited more from Josh Smith being released then Greg Monroe. Since Smith has been traded, Monroe has averaged 15.4 points along with 11.4 rebounds per game. In the last four games, Monroe has four double-doubles. Just by reading this you would think the Pistons wouldn’t trade him. The reason they would trade his is because he has been disgruntled the past four seasons in Detroit and is a restricted free agent at the end of the season. His trade value is very high right now.
Potential Suitors: Boston Celtics, Miami Heat, New York Knicks
Prediction: Boston Celtics
Anyone but Carmelo Anthony and Tim Hardaway Jr. on the Knicks: The New York Knicks are in absolute turmoil. Currently on this roster only six players on next seasons roster. Jose Calderon is one of those players and is already in trade talks. With a nice free agent class this summer, look for Phil Jackson to destroy this roster, draft a nice young player, and spend a lot of money in the off-season.