The NBA rumor mill is churning at full speed now that we are a couple weeks into the 2012-13 season, and perhaps the most exciting thing coming out of it is trade talk.
Teams across the league are starting to realize that there are some expendable players on the roster and need to jettison someone in order to improve or acquire a missing link that could turn a pretender into a contender.
Let’s take a look at some of the latest buzz being generated on the ‘net right now in today’s NBA rumor roundup.
Pau Gasol Out in L.A.?
It’s not a shock to find the Los Angeles Lakers are interested in moving Gasol, especially after his mediocre production took a major dip under newly hired coach Mike D’Antoni.
However, it’s not looking likely that any deal is getting done soon, with Steve Kyler of HoopsWorld reporting that sources close to the Houston Rockets and Boston Celtics—two teams that have been linked to Gasol in the past—aren’t interested in taking on his exorbitant salary ($19 million in 2012-13 and $19.28 million in 2013-14).
We expect that Gasol will start getting more involved in D’Antoni’s offense, as he needs his touches to thrive. The coach can’t continue to keep his star PF glued to the pine in crunch time (as he was in a loss to Memphis last week), and hope to win a championship this coming spring.
Derrick Williams on the Block?
While it seems Gasol won’t be on the move, last year’s No. 2 overall pick, Derrick Williams, isn’t a fit for the Minnesota Timberwolves and could be involved in a trade this season.
According to another report by HoopsWorld’s Kyler, the T’Wolves could be willing to trade him if the right deal comes along now that Kevin Love is back in the lineup and Minnesota’s stars are starting to heal from their devastating injuries.
Williams is averaging 10.3 points and 5.1 rebounds in 22.6 minutes per game this year, and is falling out of favor in coach Rick Adelman’s rotation. At 6’8”, 240 pounds, the former University of Arizona star is undersized for the 4, but could eventually become a serviceable small forward in the NBA.
It’ll be interesting to see if a franchise decides to take a gamble on his upside.
Drew Gooden Needs a New Home
The Milwaukee Bucks don’t have a spot for Drew Gooden in the rotation, and the healthy 31-year-old PF has been demoted to the inactive list for the time being.
Gery Woelfel of the Racine Journal Times is reporting that sources around the league believe the team is seeking a trading partner for Gooden. That team would have to be willing take on the $6 million-plus per year that the big man is owed over the next three seasons.
That’s just far too much to pay a player to participate in practice and not see a minute during games, but it will be hard to find a willing taker for his contract unless the Bucks sweeten the pot.
We will keep you updated with the latest trade rumors and speculation around the NBA right here on B/R, so stay tuned for more as it breaks.