NBA Trade Rumors: Big-Name Players Most Likely to Be Dealt

Richard LangfordCorrespondent IFebruary 13, 2013

DALLAS, TX - FEBRUARY 11:  Josh Smith #5 of the Atlanta Hawks at American Airlines Center on February 11, 2013 in Dallas, Texas.  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 Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

There are going to be some landscape-altering deals before the Feb. 21 NBA trade deadline. There are too many legitimate rumors around key players for there not to be. 

It is going to be a wild ride before all this trade chaos subsides, and that ride will undoubtedly contain more than a few surprises. 

However, here are three players who should come as no surprise if they are dealt. 


Josh Smith

If Josh Smith is not dealt before the deadline, there is really no sense listening to any rumors. He has been a centerpiece of trade speculation all year, and for good reason.

The 27-year-old is a free agent at the end of the season, and he has some serious dollar signs floating in his eyes.

If the Hawks felt he was worth a max deal, they likely would have already extended that offer. Instead, it is a safe bet they are looking in another direction.

That means the Hawks can try and trade Smith, or watch him walk away at the end of the season for nothing.

Some team is going to offer the Hawks something more attractive than just the extra cap space the Hawks would gain by losing him. That team may be the San Antonio Spurs, as Yahoo! Sports' Marc J. Spears reports the Spurs have shown interest. 

I'm not convinced Smith will end up with the Spurs, but I am convinced he will be someplace that is not Atlanta. 

Paul Millsap

The Jazz are going to trade one of their talented big men. It would be foolish not to.

Both Al Jefferson and Paul Millsap are on the last year of their contracts, and the Jazz have too many holes to sign both at the end of the season.

NBA Insider Ric Bucher (via Sulia) explains that the Jazz are more likely to deal Millsap. 

At 28, Milsap is in the prime of his career and he is a well-rounded presence on the interior. He would be a nice addition to teams like the Rockets or the Nets. 

Unless the Jazz are blown away by an offer for Jefferson, expect Millsap to be headed out. 


Brandon Jennings 

ESPN's Chris Broussard reported that Brandon Jennings told him, via text, that a report by's Chad Ford (membership required) stating Jennings wanted out of Milwaukee was not true.

I don't care if it is true or not, Jennings is almost certainly on his way out.  

The 23-year-old is a restricted free agent at the end of this year. That means the Bucks will have the right to match any offer Jennings receives, but it certainly isn't looking like they want to go that route. 

Jennings is a sporadic, high-volume-shot point guard who is looking for a max deal. Jennings has a lot of potential, but he is also shooting just 39.5 percent from the field this season.

There will be a team that becomes enamored with his potential and will make a play for the point guard like, ESPN's Marc Stein tweets, the Dallas Mavericks. 

The Bucks won't hesitate to part with Jennings, as they surely realize the chances of him coming back next season are slim to none.