8 Players Most Likely to Be Moved Before the 2012-2013 NBA Trade Deadline

Ross Bentley@@imrossbentleySenior Analyst ISeptember 7, 2012

8 Players Most Likely to Be Moved Before the 2012-2013 NBA Trade Deadline

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    With the NBA offseason coming to a close, and the start of preseason basketball right around the corner, teams are fairly set with their rosters heading in to the 2012-2013 season. 

    However, as the season goes on, many big names will assuredly be put up on the trade block if their teams struggle or the team's front office believes they can get greater value for them in a big deal during the season.

    Just because these players may be on a certain team right now, don't necessarily expect things to stay the same by the time the trade deadline hits.

    Here are eight players who are the most likely to be shipped away from their current location next season.

Anderson Varejao: Cleveland Cavaliers

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    One of the lone remaining players from the LeBron James era in Cleveland is fan-favorite big man Anderson Varejao.

    However, if things don't pick up for the Cavs next season, and they see themselves well out of the playoff hunt, it is entirely possible that it will be Varejao's last year in a Cavalier uniform.

    Varejao has been consistently productive during his career; however, with the Cavaliers picking up North Carolina big man Tyler Zeller in the lottery in this year's draft, they may want to free up minutes for Zeller by shipping away Varejao.

    Not to mention, Varejao is owed more than $8 million next season, and more than $9 million in the two years after that. 

    If the Cavs get the right offer to ship away Varejao, expect them to strike while the iron is still hot. 

Jose Calderon: Toronto Raptors

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    It seems like a sure bet at this point that unless the Toronto Raptors make an unexpected run at a playoff spot, Jose Calderon will be dealt at some point during the season.

    The Raptors' big offseason acquisition outside of the NBA draft was acquiring Kyle Lowry, who will compete directly with Calderon for playing time.

    The Raptors are in rebuilding mode and likely won't want pay Calderon all of his $10.5 million salary for next year, especially when he will be an unrestricted free agent in the offseason.

    Calderon could be very valuable to a contending team who needs a serviceable point guard, and he deserves to be on a contender. From the Raptors perspective, they can get good value for him if they look in the right place.

    Trading Calderon could be a win-win for everyone involved. 

Carlos Boozer: Chicago Bulls

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    It isn't that Carlos Boozer hasn't put up respectable, if not above-average stats since coming to Chicago, but something about his play just hasn't seemed to really fit in with the Bulls since he joined the team as a free agent in 2010.

    In 2011 when the Bulls made their playoff run to the Eastern conference finals, Boozer was often taken out in the fourth quarter during the playoffs, despite being the team's supposed second-biggest offensive threat.

    Last season, he was unable to lift the Rose-less Bulls past the first round.

    Boozer will be given one more chance to really shine in Chicago before Derrick Rose comes back next year, but if he doesn't, don't be surprised if you see the Bulls shipping him away.

    Chicago has a massive amount of money ($47 million-plus) over the next three years tied up in Boozer, but his productivity has not been enough to warrant keeping him around for that price.

    Chicago is deep enough where it can withstand losing Boozer's production, even without Rose, so Boozer's name may very well be out there for any potential suitors come midway through next year. 

Kevin Martin: Houston Rockets

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    After missing out on Dwight Howard, the Houston Rockets are in a potential rebuilding stage going into the 2012-2013 season.

    Houston's biggest additions are Jeremy Lin and Omer Asik, as well as its three first-round draft picks, Terrence Jones, Royce White and Jeremy Lamb.

    While these are all nice additions, they are losing a majority of their talent from last year, spearheaded by Kyle Lowry and Luis Scola leaving town.

    One of the few returners who saw significant time last year will be Kevin Martin, but even his time with the team may be limited.

    Martin is a pure scorer, and the Rockets may be able to trade him away to a team who is one piece away from contending for a title. In return, the Rockets could get young talent for the future or another big name that they could insert in their weak frontcourt.

    Martin may be the Rockets' best player, but it is unlikely they will win many games even with him in the lineup next season.

    It may be better for them to think about the future this year and trade away Martin before he becomes a free agent. 

Tyreke Evans: Sacramento Kings

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    Tyreke Evans' production in Sacramento has gone down significantly since his Rookie of the Year campaign in 2009-2010. However, at age 22, there is still plenty of time for Evans to realize his potential as a future All-Star.

    Evans simply may not be doing it for Sacramento. The Kings don't seem to be going in the right direction, despite having Evans and DeMarcus Cousins leading the way. They can still get great value for Evans if they trade him now.

    A change of scenery would not only benefit Evans, but it could help the team grow for the future if they get enough pieces in return.

    Evans will be a restricted free agent in the offseason, and it doesn't seem as though the Kings would be willing to match a big offer for Evans that he will likely receive from a different NBA team. 

Tayshaun Prince: Detroit Pistons

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    Considering how long he has been a Piston, and the great teams he has been an important part of, it may be tough to think of Tayshaun Prince in a different uniform.

    However, at age 32, Prince is in the latter stage of his career, and he is stuck in limbo in Detroit.

    The Pistons are improving, but they are nowhere near an NBA title, and if Prince wants another run at a championship, he will likely have to do it somewhere else.

    However, with his contract locked up until 2015, it will be up to the Pistons to send Prince away, which they very well may do this year.

    Prince is still a capable offensive player, but it will be his defense that teams will really covet. Prince coming over to a team like Oklahoma City would be a huge boost for them late in the year going into the playoffs.

    Trading Prince also makes sense for the Pistons. They already have too many forwards, and losing him would free up more time for other guys like Austin Daye and Jonas Jerekbo. 

Rodrigue Beaubois: Dallas Mavericks

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    If you aren't a Dallas Mavericks fan, you may not be too familiar with the name Roddy Beaubois, but it's certain that league executives know exactly who he is.

    Beaubois has been somewhat of an enigma in his first three seasons in Dallas, putting together brilliant stretches mixed with droughts, missed time with injuries and simple lack of playing time.

    With Jason Kidd and Jason Terry gone from the Mavs this offseason, many expected next year to be the year that Beaubois finally would get his chance to make or break his career with the Mavericks.

    Then, Dallas went out and drafted Jared Cunningham, acquired Darren Collison and O.J. Mayo and re-signed Delonte West. Beaubois is once again scratching and clawing for playing time.

    Unless he finds a way to stand out, it is likely that Dallas will finally cut its losses with Beaubois and put him on the trade block early in the season.

    As a Mavericks fan, I can only hope Beaubois goes to a team where he can finally get a fair opportunity to showcase his talent, as I believe he can be a real asset to a team in the right situation. 

Josh Smith: Atlanta Hawks

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    Josh Smith may be one of the most sought-after free agents next offseason, but he could also be one of the biggest trade pieces during the year if the Hawks struggle out of the gate.

    Smith is just hitting his prime, and after career highs across the board last season, he should improve his stats even more in 2012-2013 with Joe Johnson gone.

    Signing Smith to a long-term deal during the season will be far from guaranteed, but if a contending team is willing to take a big chance to temporarily land Smith during the season, it could be the difference in winning an NBA championship.

    Smith is one of the top forwards in the league, and it is entirely possible that the Hawks decide they want to try to build their future around him.

    However, if Danny Ferry continues the fire sale he started in Atlanta, Smith could very well be on the move before the 2013 trade deadline.