The NBA draft order isn’t completely set in stone, as several teams will be looking to move up and down throughout the night.
Organizations trading picks and players are something that happens nearly every year during the draft. Last year, a few deals got done—mainly in the second round. But there’s a great chance that some teams trade their first-round picks this year, according to the spiraling rumor mill.
What’s going to happen this year, you ask?
Here’s everything you need to know about the teams thinking about playing “Let’s Make a Deal” next Thursday night. If the rumors prove to be true, it’s going to be one of the most exciting nights of the year.
Dallas’ Pick As Good As Gone
The Mavericks want absolutely nothing to do with the No. 13 overall pick in the draft, and for good reason. The 13th pick is obviously bad luck—joking, of course. Dallas is trying to avoid adding to its cap for the rest of the summer, with its hopes high for landing a top free agent.
That knowledge comes via a report from Eddie Sefko of The Dallas Morning News, who wrote that there’s a zero-percent chance of the No. 13 pick being on the roster next season, according to a source. The source also told Sefko that there’s an 80-percent chance that pick is dealt before or during the draft.
Sefko notes that the chance Dallas selects a player who can be kept overseas for next season sits at around 15 percent. The goal, as previously mentioned, is to refrain from taking a player who would take up cap space. But why?
Well, the Mavericks are saving all of their money to try to lure Dwight Howard—the top free agent on the market this summer—to Dallas. It’s certainly a risky move, but it’s one that could pay off. Dallas could be passing up a player who turns into a star, and Howard might not even sign. But if Howard does sign…touché, Mark Cuban.
Cavs Pondering Dealing No. 1
The Cleveland Cavaliers have a lot of options regarding the No. 1 pick in the draft, which they won in the NBA draft lottery. There are several players worth taking at No. 1, and Cleveland could end up dealing the pick as well. That last option may not seem very likely to you, but it is possible.
Here’s what Sam Amico of Fox Sports reported about the Cavs’ intentions:
Trading the top pick is another option the Cavs have explored, and they will likely continue to do so. They’ve also recently taken part in a trade discussions involving “a viable” small forward, according to an FSO source.
Amico also reported that if the Cavs are going to hang onto the first overall pick, they’re likely to choose from Nerlens Noel, Ben McLemore, Alex Len and Otto Porter. While all four of those prospects appear to have very promising futures, the Cavs are smart to take offers on the pick and see what they can get.
There might be a team out there that so desperately wants the first pick that they’re willing to blow Cleveland away with an offer. If someone makes an offer that the Cavs can’t refuse, would anyone really blame them? The Cavs know how valuable a No. 1 pick can be. Remember LeBron James? They’re not going to mess this up.
Philly Might Trade to Take a Center
The Philadelphia 76ers enter the draft with a major need on their minds: a scorer. Jrue Holiday led the team this past season with 17.7 points per game, which was tied for the 21st most in the game. No one else averaged 15 points per night.
But while the 76ers need a scorer, they’ll also apparently look to draft a big man as well, according to Alex Kennedy of USA Today. Kennedy writes that Philly is interested in acquiring a late-round pick in order to draft a big man if they can’t get a good one with the No. 11 pick—where they’d be likely to take a scorer, in my opinion.
In my latest mock draft, I had the 76ers taking Steve Adams, a center from Pittsburgh, with the 11th pick. The problem with that selection, though, is that he doesn’t solve both problems. He’s a center, but he’s not a scorer, and the 'Sixers need both. So, what should Philadelphia do?
Well, the 76ers need to go into next Thursday night with an option and a plan, depending on how things might go. If there isn’t a center that they want at No. 11, they need to have a late-round draft partner. If they don’t have that, they might just have to go with either a big man or scorer—like Adams or someone similar.