NBA Draft 2012: How Latest Trade Rumors Might Reshape 1st-Round Selections

John McGonigal@@jmcgonigal9Correspondent IIJune 27, 2012

NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 28: Dwight Howard #12 of the Orlando Magic looks on against the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden on March 28, 2012 in New York City. 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 Chris Trotman/Getty Images)
Chris Trotman/Getty Images

Just like any other draft, the NBA Draft has its ups and downs, reaches and steals and, of course, trade rumors constantly bouncing off the walls. 

So far there has already been quite a bit of trading done—and David Stern hasn't even announced the first overall pick yet. 

Former Arizona Wildcat and current Rockets forward Chase Budinger was dealt to the Timberwolves yesterday for the No. 18 overall pick. Also, the Detroit Pistons sent guard Ben Gordon to the lowly Bobcats for journeyman Corey Maggette and a future first-round pick.

While these deals may not be blockbuster news, they are signs of things to come in the upcoming draft discussion as we approach the selections.

With a day to go until the draft begins at the Prudential Center in Newark, N.J., let's take a look at how certain trade rumors could affect first-round selections.


Kings' Tyreke Evans to Houston Rockets

According to reports, the Houston Rockets are trying to hit the trade trail once again with a deal that could bring former rookie standout Tyreke Evans to the Lone Star state.

Not only would the proposed trade bring in the recently frustrated Evans, but also the Rockets would receive Sacramento's No. 5 overall pick in this year's draft. 

However, it won't come cheaply as they would have to part ways with two of their first-round picks (No. 14 and 16) along with vastly underrated point guard Kyle Lowry. 

SACRAMENTO, CA - DECEMBER 26:  Tyreke Evans #13 of the Sacramento Kings drives on Derek Fisher #2 of the Los Angeles Lakers at Power Balance Pavilion on December 26, 2011 in Sacramento, California.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees tha
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

The Villanova product could have been an All-Star this past season, averaging 14.6 ppg along with 6.6 apg and an 87 percent mark from the free throw line.

If the two teams are able to pull off this deal, it would work out for the best in both regards. 

In terms of the Kings, they would receive Lowry, an up-and-coming and coveted point guard, and two middle round picks to use on a scoring threat such as Austin Rivers and a big man like Terrence Jones to help out former Kentucky Wildcat DeMarcus Cousins. 

For the Rockets, they could keep Evans and use the No. 5 pick on the best player available should it be Harrison Barnes, Michael-Kidd Gilchrist or Bradley Beal. 

However, they could be acquiring Evans and the pick just to use as trade bait...


Dwight Howard to the Rockets

Since the middle of this past season, rumors and speculations have been swirling around the league's best center, Dwight Howard.

Howard, who came right out of high school, has been the face of the Magic franchise since Orlando drafted him in 2004.

After a falling out with former coach Stan Van Gundy and a lack of NBA Finals success, Howard's name has come up quite a bit in trade rumors in the past months, and the past couple of days has been no different.

According to reports by Midwest Sports Fans, the Houston Rockets are looking to acquire the center before draft day.

When you look at the rumor mill, the Rockets have two ways of doing this:

1. Do the trade above and send Tyreke Evans and the No. 5 and 18 picks to the Magic.

2. Trade Lowry for just the Kings' No. 5 pick or the Raptors' No. 8 pick, and then trade that pick along with their No. 14, 16 and 18 spots.

Either way, a Rockets-Magic deal would seriously alter the NBA Draft's first round.

If the Magic were to secure four first-round picks, they would be in a position to rebuild their team for years to come.

With the No. 4 pick, the Magic could get the versatile Kidd-Gilchrist, and with the middle round picks they could bring in young talent such as Perry Jones III, Kendall Marshall and Tyler Zeller.


Bobcats looking to trade away No. 2 overall pick

With the New Orleans Hornets a sure lock to draft Anthony Davis with the first overall pick, the No. 2 spot is where things get interesting.

While Michael Jordan's Charlotte Bobcats have the most needs of any NBA team, they can't satisfy all of them with one selection and could be looking to swap the No. 2 spot for later picks in the draft.

However, the catch is that the Bobcats' trading partner would also have to take the underachieving, overpaid forward Tyrus Thomas, according to the Washington Post's Michael Lee.

Would a team be willing to take a $26 million player who only produced 5.6 points per game last season?

If they are, then the deal would completely shift the first round of the draft. 

The No. 2-5 spots are too difficult to guess with Beal, Kidd-Gilcrist, Barnes and Thomas Robinson all interchangeable in mock drafts. 

Considering this, the No. 2 selection sets up the following three picks—all of which could result in teams getting franchise players.  



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