The 2013 NBA draft is approaching fast (Thursday, June 27), and teams will be looking to better their team any way possible during this time of year.
With the added hype around draft picks—unproven commodities with an opportunity to succeed in the NBA—organizations find packaging picks in trades can return a huge reward and benefit the team in the long run more than taking a risk on a rookie.
All of the following teams will be looking to make a deal involving draft picks this spring, but whether or not a deal actually comes to fruition is an entirely different story.
Cleveland Cavaliers Looking to Move No. 1?
The Cleveland Cavaliers were lucky enough to win the draft lottery and have the No. 1 overall pick this year, but according to ESPN’s Brian Windhorst, the franchise is reportedly shopping its top pick.
Cleveland understands the process of rebuilding a franchise, and with the luxury taxes skyrocketing in 2013-14, the Cavaliers are looking to keep plenty of cap room open so the team can make a midseason acquisition if needed.
While former Kentucky power forward/center Nerlens Noel is the consensus No. 1 pick—a knee injury would cause him to miss all the offseason training and the start of his rookie campaign—Cleveland won’t want to take that big of a risk with the top selection.
It would be better to trade the pick away and wait until next year.
Dallas Mavericks Clearing Room for Dwight Howard?
The Dallas Mavericks haven’t found the same success since winning the NBA championship in 2011, but owner Mark Cuban has huge ideas for the offseason, including trading away the No. 13 pick and clearing room for impending free agent Dwight Howard, according to Chad Ford:
Hearing from multiple sources that Mavs likely to trade the No. 13 pick. Want to save cap space for Dwight Howard run ...— Chad Ford (@chadfordinsider) May 22, 2013
This is a risky move on so many levels.
Not only is Cuban and the Dallas organization going all-in on a player like Howard that is not guaranteed to pick the Mavericks over any other team, the idea of trading away the No. 13 pick and failing to replenish the aging team is foolish.
If Dallas wants to attract Howard, they should be rebuilding the roster with younger talent and moving away from the aging players that currently fill the lineup. Otherwise, clearing this room will just cause the Mavericks to have a great pick in 2014 when Howard signs elsewhere.
Atlanta Looking to Move Up on Draft Day
The Atlanta Hawks are facing a tumultuous offseason—seven players facing unrestricted free agency—but with the No. 17 and 18 overall picks in the 2013 draft, the organization is reportedly looking to trade up, according to Sam Amico of Fox Sports.
Atlanta will undoubtedly try to retain a few of the team’s best free agents, but with power forward Josh Smith possibly leaving, the idea of rebuilding the entire roster this offseason is a real possibility.
If the Hawks find a player toward the top of the board that is exactly what the franchise needs, this is a move that Atlanta must go forward with. If the team can’t find the right player, it would be smart with the roster turnover to use the two first-round picks and replenish its depth.