NBA Trade Rumors: Dwight Howard and Every Team's Top Trade Chip
The Los Angeles Lakers were officially ousted from this year's playoffs yesterday and may now be firmly in the market for Dwight Howard of the Orlando Magic.
That will be a very hot topic over the next few weeks, and possibly throughout the offseason. But Howard isn't the only player who may find himself (or more or less place himself) on the trading block.
Each team in the league has some trade chips they may look to move around between now and next season's trade deadline.
Here is the biggest or perhaps most likely to be dealt trade chip for every squad in the NBA...
Atlanta Hawks: Marvin Williams
Marvin Williams has never lived up to his lofty draft status. He was the second overall pick in 2005 and has career averages of 11.7 points and 5.3 rebounds per game.
However, he's still a fairly versatile 6'9" player who can give a team minutes at both forward spots.
In the right situation, or under the right coach, we may finally start to see why he was drafted so high.
Boston Celtics: Ray Allen
If the Celtics fall short against the Heat in the Eastern Conference Semifinals, the team may look to break up the "Big Three" and begin looking to the future.
The most likely candidate for a trade is Ray Allen, as his name was floated around in some rumors last year as well.
Charlotte Bobcats: Stephen Jackson
The Bobcats signaled that they had begun a rebuilding process when they traded franchise cornerstone Gerald Wallace to the Portland Trail Blazers for backup center Joel Przybilla.
The next piece they're likely to move as a part of this process is Stephen Jackson. He's 33 years old, but still has a lot to offer a contending team.
Chicago Bulls: Omer Asik
Of all the teams in the NBA, the Bulls may be the least likely to make any trades this offseason. Their roster really only has one hole, and they'll likely fill it through the draft or free agency.
If they do look to get a shooting guard through a trade, there are plenty of teams that would be interested in adding Asik's size and potential.
Cleveland Cavaliers: Antawn Jamison
With Jamison playing on an expiring contract next season, he's almost certain to be dealt by the deadline.
He'll be 35 soon, and doesn't fit the Cavaliers' need for young talent as they try to rebuild after the departure of LeBron James.
His size, versatility, and deep offensive skill set would make him a great asset for a number of contending teams. At this point in his career, he could be an excellent sixth man.
Dallas Mavericks: Brendan Haywood
This one could be Rodrigue Beaubois, as he would be the player other teams would most want. But Mark Cuban has made it clear he doesn't want to give up the young point guard.
As for Haywood, it's hard to argue that he lived up to his new contract this year, but plenty of teams are always looking for size.
Denver Nuggets: Raymond Felton
The Nuggets have one of the brightest futures of any team in the league. The young core of Ty Lawson, Arron Afflalo and Danilo Gallinari could have this team in the playoffs for years.
One player who may not fit into the picture, but is still talented enough to net the Nuggets some talented players in return, is Raymond Felton.
Detroit Pistons: Richard Hamilton
Richard Hamilton may need a change of scenery more than any other individual player in the NBA. He was a big part of Detroit's 2004 championship, but this player/organization relationship has gone sour.
Some sources have Hamilton behind a rumored player strike that went down earlier this year. That could scare off some suitors, but his skill and experience could still have some teams interested in him.
Golden State Warriors: Monta Ellis
The backcourt of Monta Ellis and Stephen Curry is exciting offensively, but dismal defensively because of a serious lack of size.
Ellis is one of the most underrated players in the league, so plenty of teams would love to add his scoring in exchange for a better perimeter defender (a swap for Andre Iguodala makes a ton of sense).
Houston Rockets: Terrence Williams
After showing some promise at the end of his rookie season in New Jersey last year, Williams could barely get onto the floor in 2010-11.
For some reason or another, the Nets new coach Avery Johnson didn't make Williams a major part of his rotation and the team traded him to Houston.
There, he appeared in just 11 games and averaged fewer than eight minutes per contest.
He is on a team that is pretty crowded on the wings with players like Kevin Martin, Chase Budinger, Courtney Lee and combo guard Goran Dragic.
However, he is still just 23 years old and like I said, has shown promise. He averaged a triple-double in a very short stint in the D-League this year.
There will be some young team in need of a wing who will make an offer if the Rockets make him available.
Indiana Pacers: Danny Granger
Prior to this year's trade deadline, there was some chatter about the Pacers possibly moving their leading scorer. Then, the team got on a bit of a hot streak, and that talk evaporated.
Some of those rumors could resurface now that the Pacers are out of the playoffs and the team has a few other players who may be able to fill Granger's role.
He would be a huge asset if he made his way back onto the trading block, and plenty of teams would offer a solid return to the Pacers in exchange for their star forward.
Los Angeles Clippers: Chris Kaman
Chris Kaman was an All-Star just last year, but the team already looks eager to move on without him.
They have a very talented young frontcourt in Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan and Kaman would be a big prize for several teams looking for a good center.
The biggest hole in the Clippers' lineup is at small forward, and they may be able to get a good one in exchange for Kaman.
Los Angeles Lakers: Lamar Odom/Andrew Bynum/Pau Gasol
Memphis Grizzlies: O.J. Mayo
The Grizzlies were actually minutes away from trading Mayo this past season.
They had a deal in place that would have sent him to the Pacers in exchange for Josh McRoberts, but paperwork reached the league office just after the trade deadline.
If Mayo remains a bench player, he's not going to get any happier than he is, and the team may look to move him again.
Miami Heat: Chris Bosh
Bosh would only get dealt if the Heat lost this round against the Boston Celtics. Even then, it would be an extremely small possibility.
However, the prospect of swinging Bosh for three or four solid players could be enticing.
Milwaukee Bucks: Corey Maggette
The Bucks were one of the most disappointing teams in the league this year. Corey Maggette may have been their most disappointing player.
In Maggette's first year with the Bucks, his average of 12 points a game was his lowest output since the 2001-02 season.
The team has a few solid wings on the roster other than Maggette, and he could be an enticing trade chip for a contender looking for some scoring from the wing.
Minnesota Timberwolves: Jonny Flynn
After a solid rookie year in which Flynn averaged 13.5 points and 4.4 assists a game, he took on a much smaller role in his second season. He averaged 5.3 points and 3.3 assists this year.
He showed enough potential in that rookie year to warrant some teams going after him as a solid backup point-guard option.
New Jersey Nets: Damion James
The Nets don't really have any tradeable assets left after they shocked us all by acquiring Deron Williams this past season.
Damion James may be able to help them acquire a small forward (the position at which they have their biggest need).
I really don't see them actively pursuing any trades in the next year. They'll be building through drafts and free agency for the foreseeable future.
New Orleans Hornets: Chris Paul
Next year, the Hornets could very well find themselves in the same situation that the Denver Nuggets were in this past season.
Unless there are significant changes in the new collective bargaining agreement, Chris Paul will be able to take complete control of his future if he wants to play with friends in a bigger market.
New York Knicks: Landry Fields
In the first half of his rookie year, Landry Fields performed way above expectations. He demonstrated the ability to score, has great basketball IQ and is already one of the league's best rebounding guards.
If the Knicks don't feel like they can wait until the summer of 2012 to add a third superstar, Landry Fields could be the key to adding Chris Paul or Dwight Howard.
Oklahoma City Thunder: Nate Robinson
Nate Robinson averaged 17.2 points, 4.1 assists and 3.9 rebounds per game during the 2008-09 season. Since then, he's spent a lot more time on NBA benches than he has on the floor.
After being traded to the Thunder this year, he underwent surgery and appeared in just four regular season games with the team. He hasn't played a second in the postseason.
The Thunder are pretty much set in their backcourt with Russell Westbrook, Eric Maynor, James Harden and Thabo Sefolosha.
They can move Robinson, and there should be some interested teams.
Orlando Magic: Dwight Howard
Orlando could very well find themselves in a situation similar to the one the Nuggets faced this past season.
If Dwight Howard does want to move to a team in a bigger market, with bigger stars, the Magic would be able to get a lot in return for their superstar.
If you're a bummed Lakers fan, this has to look good to you.
Philadelphia 76ers: Andre Iguodala
Andre Iguodala rumors ran rampant last summer, and some have already begun to surface in 2011.
Iguodala is the only Philadelphia player who hasn't had an exit interview with the team, and one writer is already resurrecting those old Monta Ellis-for-Iguodala rumors.
Phoenix Suns: Steve Nash
Even at 37, he's still arguably the best offensive point guard in the league. He's had a lot of success with the Suns but it's become clear that he's not going to lead Phoenix to a title.
They had their best teams of the Nash era a few years ago, and even then fell short of being legitimate contenders. Phoenix's current roster is much worse than those squads.
They need to begin a full-scale rebuilding, and moving Steve Nash will be a critical part of that process.
He still has a lot to offer a contending team, and there will definitely be some organizations that won't mind giving up a few players for Nash.
Portland Trail Blazers: Andre Miller
Andre Miller is just one of a few Portland Trail Blazers who could be on the move soon.
Miller, Marcus Camby and even Brandon Roy may find themselves on the block.
Miller could be a great backup point guard for a number of contenders over the next few seasons.
Sacramento Kings: Beno Udrih
Udrih has quietly had some really solid seasons in Sacramento.
But he's something of a combo guard, and the team already has two of those (Tyreke Evans and Marcus Thornton), and many mock drafts have the team taking another one in this year's draft.
They may go after Kemba Walker or Brandon Knight. If they land either of those players, Udrih could be on his way out.
San Antonio Spurs: Tony Parker
San Antonio may need to start thinking about a fresh start. After being knocked out of the playoffs by the eighth-seeded Grizzlies, it looks like the sun may finally be setting on these Spurs.
There are a number of teams that would give up good young players for Tony Parker. Specifically, the New York Knicks could make a compelling offer.
Toronto Raptors: Andrea Bargnani
It doesn't make a ton of sense to me, but the Raptors have already floated the possibility of trading Andrea Bargnani in order to build around DeMar DeRozan and Ed Davis.
He could be a fantastic frontcourt player next to a tough, defensive-minded center.
Utah Jazz: Mehmet Okur
Like a few other teams in this slideshow, the Jazz actually have several players who could be up for grabs over the next year.
Paul Millsap, Al Jefferson, Devin Harris and Mehmet Okur are just a few who could be on the move. Okur may be the most likely one to get shipped off, as he'll be on an expiring contract next season.
Washington Wizards: Andray Blatche
The Wizards have some great young guards in John Wall, Jordan Crawford and Nick Young to build around over the next couple years. Plus, JaVale McGee gives them an elite defender inside.
One young player whose ego may not fit what the team is trying to do is Andray Blatche. He's been fairly productive for Washington, but would likely be a bench player on most other teams.
However, size is always valued and plenty of teams would make an offer for him if he became available.