NBA Trade Rumors: Latest Buzz on Marcin Gortat, Kevin Garnett and More Stars

Josh BenjaminCorrespondent IFebruary 20, 2013

ATLANTA, GA - JANUARY 25:  Kevin Garnett #5 of the Boston Celtics waits during a free throw by the Atlanta Hawks at Philips Arena on January 25, 2013 in Atlanta, Georgia.  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 Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

There are almost 24 hours left until the NBA trade deadline, and the rumor mill is a-buzzing. Just when we thought we reached a boiling point, the temperature has risen yet again.

In Phoenix, the Suns could be near a trade not only with a conference rival, but also one on the verge of a championship. It could be a move that helps both teams in the long run, but also a sign that Phoenix has officially written off this season as a bust.

Meanwhile, a potential swap of two talented guards could be in the mix, but one party does not seem willing to give up its half of the deal. It's not a front-burner rumor, but still one that could be interesting to watch over the next 24 hours.

Oh, and let's not forget the latest on Boston Celtics veteran Kevin Garnett.

We've got a lot to cover, so let's dive right in and see what the next hours could bring in terms of shaking the NBA's foundation.


Suns Sending Gortat to OKC?

On the whole, Marcin Gortat has been solid for the Phoenix Suns this season. He has posted 11.3 points, 8.6 rebounds and 1.6 blocks per game, but has struggled when matched up against elite centers.

According to Paul Coro of the Arizona Republic, Suns GM Lance Blanks is exploring a trade with the rival Oklahoma City Thunder. In the deal, Gortat would head to OKC while Phoenix would receive Kendrick Perkins, rookie Jeremy Lamb and a first-round pick.

The deal makes sense for both sides. Perkins is slow-footed and not a good fit in the Thunder's system, whereas Gortat can play outside the low post and has a decent jumper. On the other side of the coin, Perkins gives Phoenix the solid low-post presence and interior defense Gortat generally lacks.

The most interesting part of this potential trade is the inclusion of Lamb, whom the Thunder acquired from the Houston Rockets as part of the James Harden trade. The former UConn Husky has only appeared in 16 games and averaged four minutes per contest this year, but posted 21.1 points per game in 14 appearances for the Tulsa 66ers of the D-League.

His inclusion means that Thunder GM Sam Presti is probably confident that he can re-sign current sixth man Kevin Martin over the summer, thus making Lamb expendable in Oklahoma City. Nothing is definite on this trade yet, but it is still a rumor worth watching.


Hornets Shopping Gordon

Eric Gordon subtly hinted last summer that he would prefer to play on a new team, but the New Orleans Hornets matched the offer sheet he agreed to with the Phoenix Suns. However, GM Dell Demps has recently been listening to offers for his star guard.

According to John Reid of the Times-Picayune, Demps has reached out to the Golden State Warriors about swapping Gordon for second-year guard Klay Thompson, who has shown marked improvement and growth this season. Unfortunately for Demps, Golden State does not appear willing to make such a deal.

I hate to say it, but there's no way that this trade will happen. The Warriors will not be willing to take on another max contract like Gordon's, especially if it means giving up a cheaper option and better shooter in Thompson.

Let's not forget that New Orleans also has rookie Austin Rivers on the roster. He may seem like a bust this season, but there's always the chance that he could come back next year and be completely improved.

As nice as it would be for the Hornets to find a taker for Gordon, it's just not going to happen at this year's deadline.


Garnett Staying in Boston...At Least For Now

This past weekend, Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports reported that the Los Angeles Clippers and Boston Celtics were discussing a deal involving point guard Eric Bledsoe and veteran big man Kevin Garnett. The deal would have given Boston some help at the point in the wake of Rajon Rondo's torn ACL, and Los Angeles would have received a more reliable center, as DeAndre Jordan would also be sent to the Celtics.

However, Wojnarowski is now reporting that all talks between both teams have stopped due to the Clippers' unwillingness to deal both Bledsoe and Jordan for the aging Garnett.

It's not really a surprise that the trade is unlikely to happen. The Clippers have too much to lose in dealing Bledsoe, and could easily get a far better package for him than Garnett.

Of course, as we have all seen, the NBA is a league that is full of surprises. This deal may seem dead now, but we won't know for sure until the deadline is passed and no move has been made.