NBA Trade Rumors: Bold Predictions for Dwight Howard, Pau Gasol and More

T.J. McaloonContributorMarch 15, 2012

ORLANDO, FL - JUNE 14:  Pau Gasol #16 of the Los Angeles Lakers drives on Dwight Howard #12 of the Orlando Magic in Game Five of the 2009 NBA Finals on June 14, 2009 at Amway Arena in Orlando, Florida.  NOTE TO USER:  User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
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The NBA trade deadline has the potential to have a number of moves happen. However, from the looks of some of these rumors, it may be a very quiet day. 

Los Angeles Lakers forward Pau Gasol and Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard are the biggest trade pieces that could get moved today.

Pau Gasol Trade Talks

According to a tweet from ESPN’s Chris Palmer, it is highly unlikely that Gasol moves today, saying:

The Lakers have crushed a number of potential deals involving Gasol. Yes, there is the deal that was going to send Gasol to Boston for Rajon Rondo, but there were other deals for Gasol. 

The Rockets were hot for Gasol, but the Lakers cooled off talks when they learned that Kyle Lowry was going to be out two to four weeks due to an infection. From CBS Sports

The Lakers are said to be serious about trading Pau Gasol in the right deal, with the emphasis on saving on future payroll. But Rockets guard Kyle Lowry being out 2-4 weeks with a bacterial infection may have put the brakes on a potential Gasol-to-Houston deal. If the Lakers could've gotten a healthy Lowry, rival executives believe it would've eased the loss of Gasol. Luis Scola has been showing signs of age, but while he has two guaranteed years totaling $19.6 million left, that's about half what Gasol is owed over the next two seasons

However, at the end of the NBA trade deadline the Lakers will keep Gasol on their roster. Other moves include the Lakers possibly moving Steve Blake to Portland for Raymond Felton, but they may have filled their need for a point guard after acquiring Ramon Sessions (according to Brian Windhorst).

Dwight Howard Trade Talks

ORLANDO, FL - MARCH 13:  A fan holds a sign in support of Dwight Howard #12 of the Orlando Magic during the game against the Miami Heat at Amway Center on March 13, 2012 in Orlando, Florida.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by d
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Howard is the most talked-about player coming into the deadline. There were rumors of Howard going to a number of teams, most notably the New Jersey Nets. 

However, those trade talks have cooled down after Howard said that he was going to delay his free agency until the end of the 2012-13 season. According to

"Man, listen, you know my heart, my soul and everything I have is in Orlando," Howard told RealGM. "I just can't leave it behind." 

Dealing with such a big decision was new territory for Howard. 

To help with the process he sought advice from people he believed had his best interest in mind. All the while, his heart remained in Orlando. While he wanted to keep his options open, Howard's intentions were never to alienate his teammates, coaches or general manager.

After hearing that, it looks like Howard will stay in Orlando for another season. This means all of that drama surrounding where he may go either at the deadline or during the offseason was for nothing. 

At the end of the day, Howard stays with the Magic, attempting to take down the Miami Heat and Chicago Bulls to win the Eastern Conference. 

If the Magic make any moves today it's going to be for a complementary player who will add to the team’s depth. 

There are a number of other smaller trade rumors floating around today, such as the New Orleans Hornets moving either Trevor Ariza, Emeka Okafor or Chris Kaman (according to John Reid of The Times Picayune).

Those are the moves to expect today—not the big, “home run”-type moves where All-Star talent gets moved from one team to another.