The NBA Trade deadline is fast approaching and teams are finding themselves being sorted into buyers and sellers, particularly teams in the NBA's Eastern Conference. Here are the statuses of each Eastern Conference team and what deadline day means for them.
The Cavs are pretty happy about their team, being the number one seed in the East, as well as holding a 5.5 game plateau over their closest competitor: Orlando. However, they have expressed interest in acquiring a Power Forward to compliment what they already have, as well as putting even more infrastructure into retaining LeBron James after this season.
Names like Troy Murphy and Antawn Jamison have come up frequently, and these two players certainly would fit it well. They are currently playing on losing teams, are already playing up to their potential, and wouldn't clash with the personalities of LeBron or Shaq.
The Cavs pretty much have every other role in their lineup locked up, having a defensive specialist (Varejao), a solid center (Shaq), point guard (Mo Williams), and a good rotation of shooting guards, but really, with LeBron James, do they they need much at SG? They have a big of talent to give up in Delonte West and Anthony Parker, and could give up their 2010 first-rounder, which isn't bound to be too good.
Odds of Making a deal Acquiring a PF: 2-1
The Boston Celtics pulled off a few huge trades a few seasons ago and won a championship, but after an early exit last year, they have realized that sacrificing their future may not have been a good thing. It has been said that they are one player away from a long playoff run, but I just don't see them being able to really offer much.
Ray Allen has been mentioned in a few isolated trade rumors, who teams would be interested in, given his huge expiring contract and leadership abilities. If he does move, look for either a team like the Knicks acquiring him to simply cash in this summer, or a team like the Heat that will need the leadership to bring them deep into the playoffs this season.
They really don't have any holes in their game, but they are interested in a younger guard to compliment Rondo, and bring some more youth to the team. A trade involving Andre Iguodala and Ray Allen would make sense, as Iguodala has shown he isn't good enough to be a franchise player in Philadelphia, and this would give Philly some cash for free agency, as they are an appealing market for the Class of 2003.
Odds of making an impact trade: 5-2
The Raptors are buyers this year as they, like the Cavaliers, are trying to convince their franchise player to stay past this year. They need defense, and lots of it, as they have had trouble closing out games, and have been inconsistent throughout the year. They could use a player like Shane Battier to plug the leaks in their system, although Reggie Evans will contribute when he returns from injury.
They do have quite a bit to give up as well, Marco Belinelli has potential and DeMar DeRozan is a project, but certainly has potential to become a lethal scorer. A deal involving some youngs players and contracts as well as a draft pick to Detroit for Richard Hamilton or Ben Gordon would appeal to both sides, as Detroit doesn't really need those chips, and has a surplus of quality guards.
Odds of making an impact trade: 3-2
The Bulls have made it clear that they are shopping Kirk Hinrich, a capable starting point guard, as they are comfortable with Derrick Rose bringing their franchise into the future. They may also be interested in unloading John Salmons, a solid shooting guard many teams would be interested in.
But what do they need exactly?
They could use a quality big man and like Boston, could make a push for Antawn Jamison, who is obviously available. David West's name could also come up and heck, Chris Bosh has even been mentioned, bringing up the: If Toronto falters, would the Bulls consider packaging a mega-deal for them?
Odds Salmons or Hinrich switch teams: 3-2
Playoff Teams Not Making Blockbusters
Orlando Magic: They are going to making a serious playoff run this year, but I don't see any deals happening, they certainly have enough talent, and no holes in their lineup.
Atlanta Hawks: They could make an under-the-radar trade for a role player, but that's not enough to classify them as total buyers. In short, they have enough talent.
Charlotte: They have already made some trades, and the Stephen Jackson trade has certainly paid off, their coaching staff is very impressed with him. Aren't really expected to contend too much this year, simply fodder for the elite teams.
Miami: Now, Miami could make a blockbuster, Michael Beasley has been mentioned in rumors, but I really don't think anything will happen, they're kinda saving their money and championship hopes for the potential two-superstar team next year if Bosh decides to join Wade in South Florida.
The Pistons have tried to keep the cogs from their glory days: Richard Hamiton and Tayshaun Prince, but they have to get serious about their future. They can sign average starters such as Ben Gordon or Charlie-V, but at the end of the day, they really have to start building future cornerstones. Trading away Gordon or Hamilton would be a great idea, and teams would also be interested in Prince, a superb defender. They'd be looking for good young big men, and draft picks.
Odds they make a significance trade: 4-1
The Pacers have a bright future involving Danny Granger, meaning they won't need a complete roster overload to rebuild to Reggie Miller days. Troy Murphy is a good option to trade, he has 2 years on his contract, and will be valuable to most teams in the playoff hunt, look for them to seriously consider dealing him. Same goes for Dunleavy, he won't be involved in their rebuilding process and is a solid NBA player.
Odds they make a significance trade: 5-2
New York Knicks
In New York, all attention is on LeBron James. If the Knicks seriously thought they could sign the NBA superstar during free agency, they would acquire tons of expiring contracts. However, dealing Eddie Curry and Jared Jeffries will be tough, they have big contracts for more than one year. They could trade David Lee though, he's a quality center, and teams such as Dallas or even Boston would be interested in him if he was on the open market.
Odds they make a significance trade: 2-1
After the Gilbert Arenas episode, the Wizards vowed to shake up their lineup, change the culture of the team. They will definitely do this by getting younger, trading away assets such as Antawn Jamison or Caron Butler, both of whom have been mentioned a lot. They could use draft picks, to hand pick their players, and really start the rebuilding process.
Odds they make a significance trade: 3-2
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