NBA Trade Speculation: 5 Potential Scenarios Involving Pacers' Danny Granger

Luis De LeonContributor IIIMay 30, 2011

NBA Trade Speculation: 5 Potential Scenarios Involving Pacers' Danny Granger

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    The Indiana Pacers made the playoffs this past season for the first time in five years. As a result of their progress, they also didn't participate in the draft lottery.

    Larry Bird and the rest of the front office might want to trade up in the draft to increase the chances of landing a rookie that can make an immediate impact. Or, maybe the Pacers stay put and only want to trade players.

    Either way, potential trading partners will ask about Danny Granger.

    As the Pacers' best player, Granger is a good-but-not-great talent any team can depend on to quietly score 20 points a game.

    Indiana could use a No. 1 option to defer to when they really need something to happen. Granger is best suited as a second option.

    Fans would be sad to see Granger get traded as he is the main guy for the Pacers. But, what the Pacers can possibly get in return would help make them more competitive in a tougher Eastern Conference.

    Here are five teams that would welcome Granger's services.

Denver Nuggets

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    After the Carmelo Anthony trade, the Nuggets have a lot of assets to work with. It would be hard to imagine them not raising an eyebrow at the possibility of landing an established player like Granger.

    T.J. Ford was a disappointment and currently has an $8.5 million player option for next season. If he chooses to pick up the option, the Pacers will look to package him with Granger. 

    Indiana has high hopes for Darren Collison, but getting Raymond Felton would be a better and cheaper insurance policy than Ford.

    Denver would have to package Felton along with Danilo Gallinari and offer something like two draft picks or a combination of a draft pick and another player to pull off a deal.

    Wilson Chandler, currently a restricted free agent, is another option for Indiana.

Cleveland Cavaliers

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    This trade is not likely, but any chance of it happening would come down to one factor: Derrick Williams.

    The Cavaliers have an obvious hole to fill at small forward. They currently own the first and fourth overall picks in the draft.

    If the Cavs' front office believe Granger is the better option, they may consider trading the fourth overall pick. The Cavs' first pick will most likely be point guard Kyrie Irving.

    That can make Daniel Gibson expendable, who can be a serviceable and much cheaper backup for Darren Collison.

    Indiana would then have to hope Williams slips past Minnesota and Utah and then pick him as Granger's replacement.

    A lot has to take place for this deal to happen. If the Pacers want Derrick Williams, this would be their last possible option to obtain him.

Orlando Magic

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    Granger can fill the shoes Rashard Lewis never could: becoming a reliable second option for the Magic.

    A move like this also shows a commitment to helping out and hopefully keeping Dwight Howard.

    Orlando has some pieces they can move, like Jason Richardson and Hedo Turkoglu. They also want to move Gilbert Arenas' big contract.

    The Pacers don't want or need Arenas. As a small market team, they can't afford him either.

    The Magic need a big man to alleviate some of the workload down low from Howard.

    Unless they don't mind parting ways with veteran Jeff Foster, the Pacers won't provide a big man.

    The Magic don't have a lottery pick.

    Due to all of the above, the Pacers and Magic aren't likely to agree to a deal unless a third team is involved. If a third team is willing to join the party, they can pull off a similar deal to the one Orlando pulled halfway through the season.

Los Angeles Lakers

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    After what happened to the Lakers this year, something needs to change.

    Danny Granger is an upgrade over both Ron Artest and Matt Barnes. Tough to imagine the Pacers wanting either player, especially Artest, so a third team would likely have to be a part of this deal.

    Granger won't put up 20 points a game in purple and gold because of the players around him, but he will be consistent. His character also isn't an issue—something the Lakers need in that locker room.

    Known for their advantage up front, this trade would give the Lakers a perimeter threat other than Kobe Bryant for opponents to worry about.

Minnesota Timberwolves

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    The current rumors flying is that the T-Wolves would give up their second overall pick, Ricky Rubio, and Michael Beasley to get Granger.

    This move would be an effort to get Derrick Williams in Indiana. It gives the Pacers a much better chance of doing so than trying to work out a deal with Cleveland.

    This trade also adds depth and versatility for the Pacers. They already have Tyler Hansbrough, Beasley can score as much as Granger does and Williams is versatile enough to play either forward position.

    As far as the other pieces in the deal, nobody knows if Rubio will ever play in the NBA, so the Pacers may ask for a different player. Maybe they try to swap T.J. Ford for Jonny Flynn.

    If the Pacers can strike this deal, they may end up getting the best value in return for Granger as they continue to build upon their playoff-caliber team.