It's time to buckle up, because we're about to run into some turbulence on Thursday night.
With the 2014 NBA draft just hours away, teams have gone into a frenzy. Prospect rumors, trade talks and smokescreens are weaving a tangled web across the Internet while we impatiently await the draft's first selection.
Although, due to recent rumors, not only does the prospect who will be selected at No. 1 overall remain a mystery, but so does the team that will be making the selection.
Which teams are set to make run at a top draft pick? Which are looking to make blockbuster deals that will shift the impending draft in dramatic fashion?
These questions will be answered in short order; however, until then, let's speculate on the current situation and take a look at a few of the Web's most intriguing rumors.
Expensive No. 1 Pick
Before it was announced he required foot surgery, Joel Embiid appeared to be the selection at No. 1 overall for the Cleveland Cavaliers. Well, with the former Kansas standout out of the discussion, Cleveland is now in a state of disarray.
With the Cavs torn between Andrew Wiggins and Jabari Parker, it looks more likely the team will attempt to trade its pick. This was confirmed by a tweet from Pro Basketball Draft:
Based on conversations with sources around the league it sounds like a better than 50% chance Cavs deal 1st pick.— Probasketballdraft (@Probballdraft) June 25, 2014
So, with Cleveland looking to trade, two questions now emerge. Which team is likely to move up to select at No. 1 overall? What's the asking price for the pick?
A tweet from Tom Moore of the Bucks County Courier Times may have answered both:
That's quite a steep price; however, the Philadelphia 76ers are rumored to be very interested in Wiggins. We'll find out soon enough if that price is right.
Wolves and Warriors Talk Love
It's known by now that Minnesota Timberwolves star Kevin Love wants out. The Golden State Warriors' interest in the forward is also widely known.
Ramona Shelburne and Marc Stein of ESPN.com reported Saturday talks between the sides had come to a halt:
The Golden State Warriors have hit an impasse in their trade pursuit of All-Star forward Kevin Love due to what is being described as an "organizational split" on the willingness to part with prized shooting guard Klay Thompson, according to sources close to the process.
After it appeared that the Warriors were prepared to part with Thompson in a deal to land Minnesota's Love, sources told ESPN.com that Hall of Fame consultant Jerry West and new Warriors coach Steve Kerr have voiced opposition to surrendering both Thompson and a future first-round pick to the Timberwolves along with former All-Star forward David Lee for Love and Wolves guard Kevin Martin.
That report still holds true; however, now it looks as though the talks are ongoing, according to a recent tweet from Stein:
Odds still against Kevin Love trade materializing tonight but sources insist Wolves & Warriors continue to talk despite Klay Thompson issue— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) June 26, 2014
Stein also gives a rather big reason for this ongoing push from the Warriors:
As my man @chadfordinsider says: Besides desire for an elite stretch four, Warriors think they'll get LeBron's attention with Steph & KLove— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) June 26, 2014
Stephen Curry, Love and LeBron James? Now, that's a Big Three.
Rockets Ready to Deal
The Houston Rockets already have a solid team; they're now looking to get over the hump and make a deep playoff run. Of course, the best way to get that done is to acquire the services of one of the NBA's brightest stars.
According to a tweet from Bleacher Report's Howard Beck, the team is well on its way:
Rival exec tells me Rockets already have a Jeremy Lin deal lined up and ready to execute if they need the cap room to sign Melo or LBJ.— Howard Beck (@HowardBeck) June 26, 2014
Even though the deal for Lin is already in place, Houston remains weary and is waiting for confirmation from one of its targets, per Beck:
As I noted yesterday, Rockets plan to keep Lin unless they get a commitment from one of their top FA targets. But Lin deal is ready to go.— Howard Beck (@HowardBeck) June 26, 2014
Will Houston be the next team to boast a Big Three, or will these potential deals slip through the cracks?
As if waiting for the draft wasn't agonizing enough, this only adds to the suspense.