10 outside-the-box NBA trade ideas we can’t stop thinking about
Brook Lopez and Dwight Howard change places ...
BKN receives Dwight Howard, Montrezl Harrell, a 2018 first-round pick, second-round pick in 2016; HOU receives Brook Lopez and Bojan Bogdanovic (Note: Lopez isn't available to trade until after Jan. 15): If Howard is expected to opt out and become a free agent after this season, the window for trading him is closing rapidly. In Lopez, the Rockets would get a star center on the same financial timeline as James Harden and Trevor Ariza and keep the team in contention. For Brooklyn, this would be hitting the reset button, but it would clear massive amounts of cap space along with Joe Johnson's expiring deal and replenish the cupboard with a prospect and draft picks.
Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY SportsEd Szczepanski
Raptors make gamble with eye on the Finals ...
NOP receives Patrick Patterson, Bruno Caboclo and two second-round picks; TOR receives Ryan Anderson (Link): It's time for Toronto to push their chips to the middle of the table. Anderson represents a massive upgrade over Luis Scola and would provide the Raptors with desperately needed floor-spacing and 3-point shooting. The Pelicans should be sellers at the deadline, and getting a potential small forward of the future in Caboclo and a few picks to restock talent isn't a bad return, especially if teams view Anderson as a flight risk as he enters unrestricted free agency this offseason.
Troy Taormina-USA TODAY SportsTroy Taormina
Celtics go from feisty to fierce in the middle ...
PHX receives Carl Landry and Nerlens Noel; BOS receives Tyson Chandler; PHI receives David Lee, 2016 first-round pick (from PHX), two 2016 second-round picks from Boston (via MIA, DAL) (Link): Noel and Jahlil Okafor don't look like a great fit, and Joel Embiid and Dario Saric are expected to factor into the frontcourt equation soon as well. We've seen Philly sell on a prospect before his rookie deal ends (Michael Carter-Williams), and turning Noel into three draft picks and a big expiring deal in Lee feels like textbook Hinkie. For Phoenix, adding a contract-controlled, mobile, young rim protector like Noel to the core of Eric Bledsoe and Brandon Knight would be a dream. Boston, meanwhile, finally gets their defensive anchor at center for a very small cost.
Jazz get Jacked for playoff push ...
Utah receives Jarrett Jack; BKN receives Trevor Booker, Raul Neto and a 2016 second-round pick (Link): The Jazz typically aren't very active at the trade deadline, but if a playoff push looks likely, acquiring a veteran to steady the team at point guard would make some sense. Jack is versatile and can play either guard spot, start, or come off the bench. This would be a low-cost acquisition and would give Dante Exum a mentor once he returns. For Brooklyn, it's a salary dump and badly needed asset acquisition with a controllable player in Neto and a draft pick.
Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY SportsBruce Kluckhohn
Joakim Noah says goodbye to Chicago ...
POR receives Joakim Noah, Kirk Hinrich, two second-round picks; CHI receives Chris Kaman and Gerald Henderson (Link): This would purely be for Chicago to get under the luxury tax line this season. With the Bulls roughly $4.2 million over the tax, a simple swap like this could get them under for the cost of two second round picks, which a rebuilding Portland team likely wouldn't mind spending up for. Trading a former franchise center in Noah is a tough pill to swallow, but if he's not going to be re-signed in free agency, moving on now and avoiding the repeater tax would be the cash smart thing to do. Chicago's ownership usually leans in that direction.
APNam Y. Huh
Pistons get some pop off the bench ...
DET receives Kevin Martin; MIN receives Anthony Tolliver, Steve Blake and two second-round picks (Link): The Pistons have had one of the league's worst scoring benches this season, and we know how much Stan Van Gundy values 3-point shooting. That makes Martin an ideal trade target, especially with Minnesota going through a youth movement and needing to open up minutes for Zach LaVine, among others. The T-wolves may hold out until the last moment for a first-round pick, but that's likely a little too rich for Martin, who has trouble staying healthy.
NBAE/Getty ImagesDavid Sherman
Heat lose Andersen, add some youth off the pine ...
MIA receives Tony Wroten; PHI receives Chris Andersen and a 2016 second-round pick (Link): After trading Mario Chalmers earlier in the season in a cap-cutting move, getting rid of Chris Andersen's expiring deal seems like a given for the Heat. Philadelphia needs a few extra million to hit the salary cap floor, and with Wroten heading to restricted free agency, the time is now to get an asset in exchange. On top of the financial savings, Wroten's scoring ability may be a welcome addition for Miami now with Goran Dragic struggling.
Jim Mone/Associated PressJim Mone
Can Anderson jump-start the Wizards? ...
NOP receives Nene, Kelly Oubre, Jr. and a 2016 second-round pick; WAS receives Ryan Anderson and Quincy Pondexter (Link): It makes sense for multiple teams in the Eastern Conference playoff hunt to target Anderson, and if Washington can turn it around in time, they have a big trade piece in Nene's expiring contract to acquire talent with. New Orleans gets an intriguing young wing to potentially take over for Eric Gordon in Kelly Oubre Jr., and dumps a bit of salary with Pondexter, who can't stay healthy. If the Pelicans don't think they can re-sign Anderson, flipping him for a prospect might be the way to go.
Crystal LoGiudice-USA TODAY SporCrystal LoGiudice
Parting of ways in the valley of the Suns
PHX receives K.J. McDaniels, Terrence Jones, Jason Terry; HOU receives Markieff Morris (Link): It certainly doesn't seem like Morris has a long future in Phoenix after his repeated blowups, both on and off the court. With Rockets forwards Jones and Donatas Motiejunas heading to restricted free agency this offseason, it makes sense for Houston to acquire a better jump shooter at the 4 on a cap-friendly deal. For Phoenix, plucking a talented forward like Jones and an interesting prospect in McDaniels for a malcontent should be considered a victory.
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Milwaukee keeps looking Foye answers
DEN receives Miles Plumlee; MIL receives Randy Foye (Link): There's nothing sexy about this trade, but Denver could use another young, rim-running big man up front much more than they need a veteran like Foye. For Milwaukee, buying low on a career 37-percent 3-point shooter with Greivis Vasquez out for multiple months fills a bigger hole than Plumlee, who rarely plays.