Joel Embiid's foot injury has completely changed the landscape of the 2014 NBA draft, and because of that, there have been a number of rumors surrounding teams potentially trading their first-round selections.
According to Adrian Wojnarowski from Yahoo Sports, Embiid had two screws inserted into his fractured right foot and is expected to miss four to six months. Because of this most recent injury and previous concerns about his back, Embiid has likely fallen out of the running for the No. 1 overall pick, and he could be falling even farther.
The injury to Embiid now has teams scrambling to change their draft strategies, with some teams in talks about trading for or trading away their first-round selections. With the draft taking place on Thursday, let's take a look at some of the most recent trade rumors.
Knicks Trying to Get First-Round Pick
With a new head coach and a superstar potentially leaving, the New York Knicks could be facing another rough season, especially since they don't have a first-round pick. However, that could change, as the Knicks are reportedly trying acquire a first-round selection from another team.
ESPN's Marc Stein tweeted that the Knicks have reportedly explored options regarding trading Iman Shumpert for a late first-round pick.
Chad Ford added that the Knicks are likely targeting former North Carolina Tar Heel P.J. Hairston.
It was another disappointing season for Shumpert, who has seen his numbers decline over the past couple of seasons rather than improve. This season, he averaged just 6.7 points and 4.2 rebounds while shooting 37.8 percent and 33.3 percent from behind the arc.
Still, another team may want to use Shumpert as a backup shooting guard and give him a chance to develop with a different team. Meanwhile, the Knicks could get a young piece late in the first round to build around like Hairston.
Teams can only be willing to give so much for Shumpert, however, and the Knicks might have to be willing to give up a little more if they really want a first-round pick this year.
Phoenix Suns Willing to Trade Away Late First-Round Pick
One team that the Knicks may be talking to is the Phoenix Suns. After winning 48 games this past season, the Suns are trying to win now, and they have three first-round picks to work with.
Wojnarowski tweeted that the Suns were willing to trade their last of the three picks in the first round, which is the No. 27 pick, for a first-round pick in the future.
If the Suns are actually able to work a deal for a future first-round pick, that would give them multiple first-rounders in multiple years, which is a promising sign for a team with some promising talent already on the roster.
While the Knicks may want a late first-round pick, they likely don't want to give one up down the road. One team that might be willing to do so, however, would be the Brooklyn Nets. The Nets don't have a first-round pick, but with Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce nearing the end of their careers, the team might want to add some talent now to try and make a run in a wide-open Eastern Conference.
There are a number of possibilities as to what the Suns could do with all of their three first-round picks, and things get even more interesting considering Eric Bledsoe is a restricted free agent. Regardless of what happens, the Suns look like they're in good shape to make a playoff push in the 2014-15 season.
Cavaliers Getting Offers for No. 1 Overall Pick
Because of the injury to Embiid, the Cleveland Cavaliers have a couple of options to work with regarding the No. 1 overall pick, and a few teams have apparently already reached out to see if they'd be willing to move down.
In his latest mock draft, ESPN's Chad Ford (subscription required) reported that a handful of teams have sent offers to the Cavs for the No. 1 pick, saying:
The Cavs received intriguing offers from the Sixers, Magic and Jazz late last week. Each is offering its own high lottery pick plus a veteran. The Cavs could theoretically get either of Thaddeus Young, Arron Afflalo or Derrick Favors and still have a top-5 pick in the draft.
While the Cavaliers may be hesitant to pass on a player like Andrew Wiggins or Jabari Parker with the top selection, the team may want to consider moving down to add a key veteran while also potentially getting a top prospect. Ford reported in an earlier mock draft (subscription required) that Embiid's workout with the Cavs was a major success, and the team could be willing to take a chance on him.
However, the injury to Embiid may have very well scared the Cavaliers off. If that's the case, then they may not be willing to part with the top pick with the option to take either Wiggins or Parker, as both have the potential to become franchise players.
Around a week ago, most people at least had an idea of what the top of the draft would look like, but with Embiid's injury, anything could happen now, including a number of possible trades.
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