Every year in the NBA, a flurry of transactions take place right around the trade deadline. When it rolls around this season—Feb. 21 to be exact—you can expect more of the same.
There’s been a ton of talk over the past few weeks as new rumblings, concerning some of the biggest stars and most popular teams in the NBA, continue to pop up all over the league.
Let’s take a look at some of the hottest buzz in today’s rumor roundup.
Lakers in a Bind
While the Los Angeles Lakers supposedly “won” the offseason by making blockbuster trades for Dwight Howard and Steve Nash, they may need to swing another in order to make the playoffs.
What will the Lakers do at the deadline?
At 17-21, the organization is desperate to bring in some more outside help, but they are hard-pressed to trade Pau Gasol—a talented PF who clearly just doesn’t fit with coach Mike D’Antoni’s scheme.
According to Mike Bresnahan of the Los Angeles Times, sources are indicating that team brass doesn’t want to risk moving the Spaniard in case DH12 decides to defect as a free agent this summer.
If Gasol were to be traded and Howard were to leave in free agency, the roster would go from having two of the game’s best bigs to none and there would be no chance for another Lakers championship any time soon.
D’Antoni’s offense needs a productive PF/C to run the pick-and-roll with Nash, so—barring a “Godfather offer”—expect L.A. to hang on to both stars at this point.
Rudy Gay Available at High Price
Gay’s name has been bandied around, and there’s a large chance that it will continue to be up until the deadline.
The Memphis Grizzlies star has a large contract and the franchise is trying to avoid the luxury tax—but only if they can return a piece that helps them win.
According to Steve Kyler of Hoopsworld:
The Grizzlies see themselves as contenders in the West this year and any Gay deal would have to keep them there and solve some of their other roster issues. Poaching Gay for cast off parts or a bunch of ending contracts isn’t going to get it done, unless those ending contract make the Grizzlies better.
It’s apparent that the Griz are taking a potential playoff run seriously and aren’t looking to implode to save a few bucks. This is great news for fans, as it seemed that the organization was desperate to move their starting swingman just over a week ago.
If a great offer doesn’t come by the deadline, we suspect more will happen around draft time. Depending on how Memphis fares in the postseason, Gay could be moved then.
DeJuan Blair Will Be Dealt
That statement may be strong, but Kyler’s sources have found it to be true.
According to a Hoopsworld writeup: "The Spurs are looking and talking, but it’s safe to say Blair will be elsewhere after the trade deadline and unfortunately San Antonio may not get much for their troubles."
The young big man is set to become an unrestricted free agent this summer and the Spurs would likely lose him for nothing if he weren’t dealt.
Unfortunately, teams around the league know this and his value isn’t high to begin with. Don’t be surprised if the Spurs cave in and accept a low-ball offer in order to get something in return for his services.