Trade season is heating up, as teams across the NBA are scrambling to improve their roster or dump salary before next month's deadline (Thursday, Feb. 21).
Although more names will trickle in as the deadline nears, there are already some high-profile players on the trading block. According to ESPN's Marc Stein, Rudy Gay, Andrea Bargnani, DeJuan Blair, Omri Casspi, Cole Aldrich, Samuel Dalembert, Drew Gooden and Beno Udrih have all been mentioned in recent trade talks.
While every one of those guys may be traded, the following players must be dealt before it's too late.
Andrea Bargnani - PF, Toronto Raptors
Bargnani will be tough to trade. He's has been injured, unproductive and he is owed $33 million over the next three years. Still, Toronto must find a trade partner, even if they are taking back a player with much less talent.
The Raptors also have little use for the former No. 1 overall pick, as they've been drastically better without him in the lineup. Toronto has gone 11-2 in its last 13 games, and Ed Davis has been excellent as the starting power forward.
The 23-year-old Davis is averaging 12.6 points and eight rebounds per game this month. He's also shooting 54.3 percent from the field this season.
In order for Davis to fully develop, the Raptors should deal Bargnani as soon as possible.
Drew Gooden - PF, Milwaukee Bucks
Gooden could still be a fairly productive player in this league, but he's been buried on the Bucks' bench. Sitting behind Ersan Ilyasova, Larry Sanders and John Henson, Gooden is nothing more than a highly-paid cheerleader in Milwaukee.
The youthful Bucks have no need for Gooden, especially when you consider he is owed $6.68 million over each of the next three seasons. Milwaukee would be wise to dump Gooden before they have to dish out more money to player who isn't logging minutes.
Beno Udrih - PG, Milwaukee Bucks
Another Buck who should be on the move, Udrih will likely be easier to get rid of than Gooden. That's because he has an attractive expiring contract, with his $7.3 million deal coming off the books after this season.
Udrih has also been decent in his limited playing time. He's averaging eight points, 3.2 assists and 2.3 rebounds in 18.9 minutes per game. As an added bonus, he's shooting a career-high 52.5 percent from the field.
The 30-year-old Udrih is a decent backup point guard, but with Brandon Jennings and Monta Ellis each playing more than 36 minutes per game, he's not exactly necessary in Milwaukee. If the Bucks can get a quality asset or two in return for Udrih, they should pull the trigger.
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