The February 21st trade deadline is less than two weeks away, and with each passing hour, newer and newer speculation emerges.
Myriad names have been tossed around in potential trade scenarios, some far-fetched, but others very plausible.
Here's the latest buzz surrounding three of the hottest current trade pieces:
Iman Shumpert, New York Knicks
Per Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports, the Phoenix Suns have taken an aggressive liking to Knicks guard Iman Shumpert:
As the Phoenix Suns try to reshuffle their roster for the future, their front office remains motivated to try to acquire New York Knicks guard Iman Shumpert, league sources told Yahoo! Sports.
The Suns are willing to give New York a package that includes forward Jared Dudley and possibly a future first-round pick for Shumpert, but the Knicks have so far shown no inclination to do such a deal, sources said.
The once-explosive Shumpert hasn't looked quite right since returning from last year's torn ACL that cost him most of the season. Even without his patented burst, though, Knicks coach Mike Woodson expressed that he'd like to keep his guard in town (via New York Daily News)
"But I sat him down and I told him. He knows how I feel about him. I mean, my daughter jumped me last night about that trade rumor. She called me and said 'Daddy, you're not trading him,' because they all went to Georgia Tech together. Man, I'm like 'Iman's going to be right here with me.'"
The Knicks are clearly in win-now mode, and adding Jared Dudley—fully healthy knees and all—would most likely help. But if Shumpert returns to last year's impressive form, they'd be risking a cornerstone piece to do so.
Josh Smith, Atlanta Hawks
News broke earlier this week that Atlanta was not willing to give Josh Smith a max contract, and that he could subsequently be on his way out of town. Now ESPN's Chris Broussard has identified a dynamic suitor:
What Brooklyn would have to give back for Josh Smith remains to be seen, but it shouldn't be as much as he's worth. Since the do-it-all forward is all but guaranteed to walk this summer, the Hawks essentially need to trade him before the deadline. That puts all of the leverage squarely in Billy King's aggressive hands.
With Smith in tow, Brooklyn would go from a fringe contender to the Miami Heat's biggest threat out East. Though his skill set is remarkably similar to that of Gerald Wallace, Smith plays that role better. Next to the likes of Deron Williams and Joe Johnson—a former teammate from Joe's days in Atlanta—he could seriously thrive.
The Nets aren't the only ones interested, though. According to Pistons beat writer Vincent Godwill, the Suns and Mavericks might make a move too:
Wherever Josh Smith goes, he could—nay, will—make a giant impact on the season.
J.J. Redick, Orlando Magic
The divisive former-Dukie is having a career year in Orlando, and the rest of the league has taken notice. Free to walk at season's end, Redick has been the subject of many a trade rumor in the past month or so.
Now, according to HOOPSWORLD writer Alex Kennedy, two front-running suitors have emerged:
Redick would provide a valuable sprig of offense for both Chicago and Indiana—two teams that desperately need it.