One of the most significant events of the NBA season is less than two weeks away, and some teams are looking to make moves. The NBA trade deadline is only 10 days away, and according to Sham Charania, several organizations are starting to gauge the trade market.
The parity in the NBA is at an all-time high. We haven't seen a dominant team this season, especially in the Western Conference. Only six games separate the Western Conference third and 13th seeds. With so many teams so close together in the standings, we may not see as many trades as we usually see, but it's the NBA, and anything can happen around the trade deadline.
Here are the three latest trade rumors that would impact the NBA the most based on the latest report from Charania on Monday morning:
OG Anunoby to the Suns
With the emergence of Scottie Barnes, the Raptors seem more willing to move on from OG Anunoby. They're two-way small, and forward. Recently reports emerged stating that a team had offered the Raptors three first-round picks for the 25-year-old forward. The latest report is that the Knicks (reportedly the team that offered the three first-round picks earlier in the year) and the Phoenix Suns are interested in the Anunoby.
Between the two teams, Anunoby seems to fit better with the Suns. The Knicks already have RJ Barrett at small forward and Julius Randle at a power forward. Sure they could move him to center, but that would be a mistake considering Mitchell Robinson has played well this season.
How Anunoby would fit with the Suns
The Suns have Mikal Bridges, and he is a similar player to Anunoby, but I dont think they would have a problem moving Cameron Johnson to a sixth-man role and playing Anunoby at power forward. The Suns also control all of the picks for the next several seasons. Anunoby is shooting over 36 percent from three-point range, averaging a career-high 2.1 steals per game, and is still one of the better wind defenders in the NBA. In addition, at least with Chris Paul at point guard, the Sun's championship window is closing fast, which might make the Suns more willing to part with multiple picks.
Anuonby would give the Suns two of the best wing defenders in the NBA and improve their bench unit with Johnson now coming off the bench.
Jae Crowder to the Bucks
We may finally get a resolution to the year-long Jae Crowder saga out in Phoenix. Crowder hasn't played one second this season for the Suns after the two-sided agreed it would be best for the veteran forward not to take the court until the Suns work on a trade.
The Suns and Crowder had a falling out after the two sides couldn't agree on a contract extension, and the Suns seemed to have decided to move Cameron Johnson into the starting lineup, which would have meant Crowder heading to the bench. However, the Suns have reportedly granted permission to the Milwaukee Bucks to speak with Crowder.
Charania reported that the Bucks have offered Jordan Nwora, Serge Ibaka, and George Hill 2nd round draft compensations. I am sure the Suns would like more in return, but with the trade deadline getting closer, it may be the best deal they can get for the veteran Crowder.
How Crowder could help the Bucks
Crowder would help a Bucks team who has had to navigate Kris Middleton being out most of the year. They have tried different players at the backup power forward position as well. Crowder could help the Bucks depth by playing either forward position.
Crowder has NBA Finals experience during his time with the Miami Heat. As you remember, the Heat made a run to the Finals during the NBA bubble season. Even though he was acquired late that season and only played 20 regular season games, he was instrumental in the Heat playoff run.
Jakob Poeltl to the Celtics
It has been reported that several teams are interested in the fifth-year big man out of Austria. The two teams named were the Raptors( the team that drafted him) and the Boston Celtics. The Spurs are trying to focus on the youth movement as they are deep into the rebuilding phase.
Poeltl has been a consistent contributor for the Spurs for the last three seasons. With the previous two being his best two seasons in the NBA. At 27, he isn't exactly old but when a team is rebuilding, 27 years old seems like an old man in rebuilding years. That is the reason the Spurs are looking to trade Poeltl, on top of the fact that he will be an unrestricted free agent this summer.
How he could help the Celtics
I am sure you are asking how a Poeltl trade could be higher than the other two. Simply, he would be going to a championship favor and fill an immediate need on that championship-contending team.
Even though the Celtics have Al Hortford and Robert Williams, they need another big man who can control the paint. Hortford is still a good player but is also in his 15 seasons. Williams is one of the best offensive rebounding and shot-blocking bigs in the league but has dealt with multiple injuries the last couple of seasons.
Poeltl would give the Celtics much-needed frontcourt depth and a legitimate seven-footer who can also score in the paint. He would also be able to fill in for Williams if he was to miss time with another injury. If Willams is out, they have to play center by committee.
They may be a little hesitant to make the trade considering Poeltl is a free agent this summer, but the Celtics also may want to go all in, considering this is their best chance at a ring in a long time.
It also helps that the Celtics co-governor Wyc Grousbeck wants to go all in this season.
“The conversation that I have had — that I have shared — with Brad (Stevens, team president) is (that) it’s about this year,” explained Grousbeck in a recent interview with NBC Boston Sports. “It’s not about ‘this will pay dividends in three years,’ or ‘this will do this next year’ — it is ‘this year, muscle up, and let’s get the job done’.”
Many more of these reports will come out in the next several days leading up to the trade deadline on February 9th. Unfortunately, most will probably never come to fruition because, most of the time, the trades that are made are the ones we never hear about. Even with that said, it should be another crazy trade deadline with multiple teams looking to make the move that puts them over the top or under the tax threshold.