NBA Trade Rumors: Latest on Potential Moves Around the Association

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NBA Trade Rumors: Latest on Potential Moves Around the Association
Lance Iversen-USA TODAY Sports

The trade rumors around the NBA are continuing to heat up as the trade deadline on Feb. 20 gets closer, with some interesting names starting to float around.

Teams in the Western Conference will likely be looking to add key depth pieces to attempt to take a run at some of the elite, while some East teams may be more focused on giving away key players to focus on rebuilding.

Let's take a look at some of the latest trade rumors going around the Association, breaking down the impact of each one.

 

Greg Monroe

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Detroit Pistons are struggling, but it's still no secret that they have quite a deep frontcourt with players like Greg Monroe, Andre Drummond and Josh Smith

With that being said, it would make sense for the Pistons to try and trade away one of these bigger players to help add some much-needed talent in the backcourt. According to Alex Kennedy from Basketball Insiders, teams appear to be very interested in the power forward:

It’s no secret that Josh Smith is better at the four, and it’s possible that Detroit moves the valuable Monroe to upgrade another position and slide Smith over to power forward.

One team that is interested in Monroe is the Washington Wizards, according to multiple league sources. It’s becoming clear that Washington is planning to pursue Monroe, either through trade or free agency.

 

Monroe has had a lot of success with the Pistons, putting up 14.2 points, 8.7 rebounds and 2.0 assists per game, shooting 50.5 percent from the field. However, his presence tends to force Josh Smith to play the small forward role, even though he would be more effective as the four-spot guy.

If they could move Monroe, not only would Smith move to power forward, but the team would also likely add a valuable guard. With some added help to the backcourt, the Pistons could become a solid playoff team out of the East.

 

Pau Gasol

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

It seems like almost every season there are rumors about Pau Gasol possibly being traded, yet he's still playing for the Los Angeles Lakers.

Well, the rumors are back again. But just like every other time, it doesn't look like it's going to be happening before the trade deadline. According to Steve Kyler from Basketball Insiders, cap space is the reason that makes the trade so unlikely:

The biggest challenge for the Lakers is not finding someone who would take Pau Gasol. A lot of teams would. 

The problem is moving $19 million in salary and not taking any long-term money back. 
Despite the talk that the Lakers should wait for 2015 and the chance at Kevin Love, they are not willing to give up their cap flexibility to move Gasol. They just won't.

Equally, no one is willing to give the Lakers anything of real value because Gasol is likely headed to the free agent market regardless of where he lands. 

At 33 years old, Gasol is nearing the end of his career. But he's still a very good player, averaging 16.7 points and 10 rebounds per game while shooting 46.3 percent. 

The problem for teams is that they don't want to bring in a player worth so much money and only get a couple good years out of him. Teams prefer to add younger guys who they know can add long-term value to their teams.

With the Lakers hoping to have enough cap space for the offseason, they're not going to want to add any players with big-time deals. The Lakers want to rebuild, but they want to add talented young players to help them get back to their winning ways.

 

Marcus Thornton

Before his incredible scoring outburst against the Indiana Pacers, Marcus Thornton was already rumored to be on the trading market. 

For both Thornton and the Sacramento Kings, it couldn't have come at a better time.

Back on Jan. 24, Steve Kyler from Basketball Insiders tweeted that he knew the Kings were shopping Thornton for a possible trade.

Later that night, Thornton went on to drop 42 points on 16-of-27 shooting including 7-of-15 from behind the arc. What's even more impressive is that he's only averaging 8.3 points per game and shooting only 38.2 percent.

With a game like that, teams will definitely begin making more serious calls about Thornton. Meanwhile, the value for Thornton will increase, and the Kings will likely be getting a more valuable deal as they look to continue to add youth and rebuild their roster.

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