NBA Trade Rumors: Most Recent Buzz and Speculation from Around the League
Get yourself prepared—in the coming weeks, the NBA trade rumors are only going to increase exponentially.
Some will undoubtedly have merit and be worth reading into, but others will be more ludicrous than Christopher Brian Bridges himself.
So, as the San Antonio Spurs and Miami Heat battle it out for the Larry O'Brien Trophy and we continue to approach June 27's draft, let's take a closer look at the newest slate of rumors and determine how many legs they really have.
Isaiah Thomas to the Cleveland Cavaliers?
The Sacramento Kings' galvanizing point guard has impressed ever since being named Mr. Irrelevant at the 2011 NBA draft, but with Mike Malone taking over as head coach, it appears the team is ready to head in a different direction.
According to Bob Finnan at The News-Herald, there is chatter that Thomas is being offered to the Cavaliers for the No. 19 pick:
One unconfirmed rumor that's surfaced is the Kings offering point guard Isaiah Thomas to the Cavs for the No. 19 pick. He's only 5-9, but you could do a lot worse as a backup point guard.
This would be the perfect role for IT.
At 5'9", he's a below-average NBA defender. But coming off the bench behind Kyrie Irving, he could focus on what he does best: provide instant offense and inject energy into the second unit.
In 26.9 minutes per contest last season, Thomas averaged 13.9 points and 4.0 assists. Although he is streaky, he can be deadly from the outside and has the ability to get into the lane and finish among the trees or draw contact and get to the line.
He finished the year with a tremendous offensive rating of 115 and a woeful defensive rating of 115, and letting him come off the bench in a sixth- or seventh-man type role would play to his strengths.
Besides, the Cavs are looking to contend as soon as possible. They have four terrific picks (Nos. 1, 19, 31 and 33), but likely don't want to roster a quartet of rookies.
By shopping this pick to the Kings—a team that is starting over and needs to build for the future—for Thomas, they would instantly improve their bench.
Minnesota Timberwolves Shopping Derrick Williams?
While Thomas has exceeded expectations in Sacramento, fellow 2011 draftee Derrick Williams has fallen frustratingly short of his after being drafted No. 2 overall.
As such, with Kevin Love and Andrei Kirilenko entrenched in the starting lineup in front of him, the T-Wolves see the tweener forward as expendable, according to the Pioneer Press' Charley Walters:
Because Derrick Williams will have to play behind either Kevin Love or Andrei Kirilenko next season, he's expected to be the Timberwolves' main chip in trade talks this month.
What deal do you think is more believable?
Williams turned 22 on May 25. It wouldn't be surprising if the Wolves packaged the 6-8, 240-pounder with their No. 9 overall pick in the NBA draft to move up to take shooting guard Victor Oladipo from Indiana.
It's worth noting that AK47 has a player option for 2013-14, but it doesn't sound like he'll opt out and open a spot in the starting lineup for Williams.
Of course, acquiring Oladipo is going to take, at the very least, a top-five pick.
While it's difficult to imagine any team in the top five (Washington, Charlotte and Phoenix would be the most likely candidates) giving its pick straight up for Williams, who averaged 12.0 points on 43.0 percent shooting and 5.5 rebounds in his second NBA season, there are a few things to remember.
First, Williams is just 22 years old. As a versatile youngster with the ability to play both forward positions and score in bunches (John Wall recently said via the Washington Post that he wants a pick-and-pop threat at the 4—that describes Williams), he still holds value.
Moreover, the T-Wolves hold the No. 9 pick, and packaging that with Williams will undoubtedly pique some interest at the top of the draft.
While Otto Porter and Anthony Bennett are undoubtedly attractive to a team like the Wizards, the idea of adding Williams and a big man like Alex Len or Cody Zeller has to be enticing.
On the other side of things, it also makes sense.
Assuming Kirilenko and Nikola Pekovic stick around, Minnesota's biggest weakness in the starting lineup is at the 2. While Ben McLemore is a burgeoning talent, Oladipo is the supreme shooting guard in this class.
He has the body, athleticism, defensive prowess, work ethic and winner's mentality to turn the 'Wolves into a playoff team. He's worth it in this potential deal.
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