NBA Draft 2012: Is the No.1 Pick Truly Untradeable?

Robin LalisseCorrespondent IJune 12, 2012

Anthony Davis will most likely be in a Hornets uniform, but what would it take for that almost certain reality to change?
Anthony Davis will most likely be in a Hornets uniform, but what would it take for that almost certain reality to change?Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Anthony Davis may be the most talented player in an NBA draft since LeBron James

To take it a step further, he may be the only college star player to enter the draft with both elite athleticism and championship pedigree from the college level who has no work ethic or consistency concerns. That explains why the team that drafted James and looked to get the top selection for the second straight year by trading all its draft picks, according to ESPN's Chad Ford, via NBC Sports, made an offer for the No.1 pick in the 2012 NBA draft but was rejected by New Orleans.

Remember that the first-round trade-up for Robert Griffin III was made way ahead of this year's NFL draft. Similarly, the Cavaliers were maybe thinking that they could entice the Hornets to give up the chance to draft a franchise player in favor of filling multiple needs. However, there hasn't been any massive draft pick trade in any sport since the failure of the Ricky Williams draft in which New Orleans traded its entire 1999 draft plus its first- and third-round picks of the 2000 draft. 

The question I am asking in this piece to any readers is whether or not it would be possible for any team to entice the New Orleans Hornets to trade away the No. 1 pick. Could Cleveland do it if it enticed the Hornets with future first-round picks, even though they can't give back-to-back first-round picks? Can any team give up a veteran or two or cap relief?

When a team receives a No. 1 pick in the NBA draft lottery that it didn't expect to, it tends to cherish that pick more than any other asset on its roster. Just look at the Bulls with Derrick Rose, the Spurs with Tim Duncan and even when the Cavaliers got LeBron. Even when there were other potential stars in the draft, those teams never entertained the idea of trading down. 

There are not a lot of potential superstars in this draft. Although, trading down to No. 4 would allow the Hornets to pick Thomas Robinson, who would still fill the same need Davis would at power forward. But a rookie Robinson provides little more than what Carl Landry has provided for the last two seasons, so why would they give up a potential All-NBA talent like Davis for that?

In the end, I don't see how any team could make a good enough deal for the Hornets to consider giving up the top selection because the NBA is a players' league more than any other major sport. The RG3 trade shows that making a big deal for a top-two selection is still a possibility, but it would require historically unique circumstances in the NBA for it to happen on the basketball court.

This is my opinion, but I would love to hear what others think about the value of the No.1 pick in the NBA draft compared to the NFL, and also what deal would New Orleans have to at least think about giving up the rights to draft Anthony Davis.