NBA Rumors: Latest Draft, Trade and Free-Agent Buzz

Brian MaziqueCorrespondent IIIJune 23, 2014

Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson goes to the basket as Los Angeles Lakers forward Jordan Hill defends during the second half of an NBA basketball game, Friday, April 11, 2014, in Los Angeles. The Warriors won 112-95. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
Mark J. Terrill/Associated Press

It's hard to find any NBA offseason news that isn't somehow related to Kevin Love. The 25-year-old star for the Minnesota Timberwolves seems to be on every team's radar as the possibility for a draft-day exit from Minnesota feels like a foregone conclusion.

In an interview with Fox Sports' Aja Dang, Love is already referring to the Timberwolves as "they."

Once the point of view changes, that's usually a dead giveaway that a player has all but separated himself from his current team. 

The Los Angeles Lakers are apparently throwing their hat into the Love rumor mill. Per Mike Bresnahan of the Los Angeles Times:

The Lakers have been in discussions to acquire Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson for the seventh pick in next week’s draft, The Times has learned.

The deal would be part of a larger three-way trade that sends Minnesota All-Star power forward Kevin Love to the Warriors. The Lakers are interested but the deal has been put on hold because of a difference in opinion within the Warriors’ organization whether or not to keep Thompson while trying to obtain Love.

Love would still wind up in Golden State, which seems to have emerged as the most likely destination, but the Lakers would have a promising wing player in Thompson to team with Kobe Bryant.

After Bryant has moved on, Thompson could easily slide into the role as primary scorer and be all the better for the years he spends learning from the Mamba. 

Do the Lakers really want to give up the chance to land a potential superstar like Oklahoma State's Marcus Smart in the draft? He could be available at No. 7.

We shall see on Thursday when the NBA draft begins and the rumored deals become fact or fiction.

Believe it or not, there are other rumors that aren't related to Love. 


Philadelphia Has a Thing for Young, Injured Big Men

Feb 4, 2014; Waco, TX, USA; Kansas Jayhawks center Joel Embiid (21) warms up before the game against the Baylor Bears at the Ferrell Center. The Jayhawks defeated the Bears 69-52. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Last season, the Philadelphia 76ers traded All-Star point guard Jrue Holiday to the New Orleans Pelicans for injured but talented Kentucky big man Nerlens Noel.

It seems the 76ers may have their eyes on this year's top big—but injured prospect—Kansas' Joel Embiid.

Many could argue that Noel is more of a power forward than a center, but Philly could be rolling the dice a bit too much tabbing two bigs that both have career-altering injuries.

Noel tore his ACL months before the draft, and Embiid suffered a broken foot during a predraft workout. If the 76ers went this route, fans probably wouldn't see the two on the floor together until the 2015-16 season.

That's a tough sell.


Dallas Could Sneak Up on the Free-Agent Market

Jan 5, 2014; Dallas, TX, USA; New York Knicks small forward Carmelo Anthony (7) shoots over Dallas Mavericks small forward Shawn Marion (0) during the second half at the American Airlines Center. The Knicks defeated the Mavericks 92-80. Mandatory Credit:

Mark Cuban very rarely does anything quietly, but the Dallas Mavericks haven't been one of the teams featured prominently in Carmelo Anthony rumors—until now.

ESPN's Marc Stein says Melo and Pau Gasol are likely to hear a pitch from the Mavs.

A frontcourt of Melo, Gasol and Dirk Nowitzki sounds good but old. Monta Ellis is a stud at guard, but Anthony would have to ask himself how long he expects to be able to win with an aging Gasol and Nowitzki.

It seems like a valiant effort might be made by Cuban, but it would be shocking if Melo chose Dallas over teams like Chicago or Houston or even staying with the New York Knicks.


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