With the 2014 NBA Finals coming to a close and the San Antonio Spurs ready to hang yet another banner, the offseason has officially started for all 30 teams.
Though franchises like the Spurs and Miami Heat have some huge decisions of their own to make with their respective Big Threes, everyone else is hoping to catch them next season. Whether it's through the free-agent market, draft or trades, each organization will look to bolster its lineup.
The biggest topic remains where Kevin Love will land, but preparing for the future is about more than just one player. For the 29 teams that don't end up with Love either this season or next, plans have to be in place to win in the coming years.
As the 2014 NBA draft approaches, here's a look at the latest rumors swirling in the NBA.
Isaiah Thomas Being Shopped?
The NBA is slowly turning back to a point guard-dominated league. With players like John Wall, Chris Paul and Russell Westbrook leading their teams to successful seasons, franchises without one are vigorously searching for one.
One point guard who rose to prominence in 2013-14 season might be on the market, per Jake Fischer of Slam:
Per multiple sources, Sacramento Kings' front office is split on moving forward with Isaiah Thomas at PG, has engaged in prelim trade talks.— Jake Fischer (@JakeLFischer) June 18, 2014
While no teams are reportedly in the mix, Isaiah Thomas is an emerging star in the NBA. After averaging 20.3 points and 6.3 assists with the Sacramento Kings last season, it doesn't quite make sense to move the dynamic floor general.
The Kings got him for a steal at the 60th overall pick in the 2011 draft, and he has grown into the No. 15 point guard in the league, according to Adam Fromal of Bleacher Report. It's going to cost a lot more now than a second-round pick in order to acquire the 25-year-old.
Bulls Looking to Move Up
Now returning to the department of things that make sense, the Chicago Bulls are looking to move up in the NBA draft to acquire an elite shooter.
Chad Ford (subscription required) of ESPN provides the latest rumor for the Bulls:
The Nuggets continue to discuss moving this pick to the Chicago Bulls. If the Bulls get this pick, they'll grab either [Gary Harris] or Nik Stauskas here. They've also had several other discussions with teams about deals and seemed poised to move this pick. Harris, Stauskas and James Young seem to be focal points, as is Tyler Ennis. Right now I'd give the edge to Harris.
Thanks to the crushing defense by Joakim Noah that led to him winning NBA Defensive Player of the Year, the Bulls are already set on that side of the ball. As for the offense, Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated offers another direction where the Bulls might look:
Chicago is aggressively trying to move its two first-round picks, according to rival executives. The Bulls are believed to be looking for either a veteran scorer or the chance to move up in the draft to select a young wing player with scoring potential.
Prospects like Gary Harris or Nik Stauskas would offer a great option to go along with the return of Rose and Noah's dominance inside. As for veteran players, no options were thrown out, but two first-round picks just outside the lottery would bring in a great scoring threat.
Knicks Trying to Move In
While the Bulls have two draft picks to shop around, the New York Knicks have a bare cupboard heading into next Thursday night.
That might not be the case when the selection process begins, as Adam Zagoria of SNY.tv points out:
Talked to one league source who says Phil Jackson is looking to 'shake things up', including trying to get a 1st-round pick. #Knicks— Adam Zagoria (@AdamZagoria) June 18, 2014
Did anyone really expect Phil Jackson to stay out of the draft? The only question now is this: Who will be dealt to acquire that first-round pick?
No specifics are pointed out about what player will be moved to have a shot at one of the top young prospects, but Jackson typically lives up to his word. After a horrid season that led to New York being the laughing stock of the Eastern Conference, the turnaround needs to start immediately.
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