NBA Trade Rumors: Ranking Top Big Men on Trading Block

Mike Shiekman@TheRealShiekFeatured ColumnistNovember 17, 2012

OKLAHOMA CITY, OK - JUNE 02:  Serge Ibaka #9 of the Oklahoma City Thunder blocks the attempted layup by DeJuan Blair #45 of the San Antonio Spurs in the second half in Game Four of the Western Conference Finals of the 2012 NBA Playoffs at Chesapeake Energy Arena on June 2, 2012 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. 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 Larry W. Smith/Pool/Getty Images)
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Skilled big men are tough to find in today’s NBA.

Most teams find their middle men and hold onto them tight, but sometimes circumstance gets in the way of talent.

Whether there’s a glut of big men on the roster or a clash with coaching schemes, somehow these select big men get sent to the trade block.

Let’s rank the big guys available who could be switching zip codes very soon.

DeJuan Blair

Already with three DNPs by coach’s decision this season, the San Antonio Spurs look like an illogical fit for Blair.

The Spurs’ first-round pick from four years ago sits behind both young and old in the rotation, including Tiago Splitter in his second year and Boris Diaw, who looked like Fat Albert at the start of 2011.

Blair’s lack of minutes isn’t due to talent, but size. The 6’7” player rebounds like a big man, but otherwise plays under the rim. CBS Sports NBA blogger Matt Moore reported Blair on the trade block prior to the 2012 season’s opening tip.

Playoff contenders in need of a rebounder and energy player off the bench, such as Atlanta, Dallas and Boston, could give up some cap room for Blair’s services.

Al Jefferson

The Jazz could use Jefferson as alluring trade bait to go to a contending team in need of a big man. Throw in his expiring contract next year and his trade value skyrockets; he will be playing for a new contract plus the team won’t have to worry about paying him long term if they don’t want to.

Alex Kennedy comments on Jefferson’s status with Utah in his Hoopsworld blog. The Jazz big commented on the potential of returning to Boston, where he played early in his career:

"You know, this will always be my home away from home. Danny Ainge gave me a chance. Nobody else did. "So if that situation would happen, I would love to do that again. But right now it’s all about taking care of business and finishing the season out right."

Multiple options the Jazz can go with here, but I believe a sign-and-trade for Jefferson following the season may be beneficial to get a point guard that can lead this young core into the next five years.

Mo Williams can be a temporary fix, but they are missing a floor general for the long haul. Jefferson can be replaced through Derrick Favors and Enes Kanter, who have been extended through 2014.

Anderson Varejao

Always known as a defensive stalwart, Varejao has stepped up all facets of his game in the young 2012 season.

Their big man’s explosion certainly has to be pleasing for Cavaliers’ management, who’d love to get a building block in exchange for Varejao.

Bob Finnan of the News-Herald projects that if the Cavaliers aren’t in playoff contention, he is expendable by February’s trade deadline.

The Cavs' curly-haired big man will earn more than $17 million with the team over the next two years, with a team option in 2014.

Perhaps a team in need of a defensive injection, such as Golden State, would take on Varejao’s contract for a playoff chance. What I know for sure is that they would be getting the best big man available.


Mike Shiekman is a Breaking News Writer for Bleacher Report. Follow his NBA musings and thoughts on the universe @TheRealShiek