NBA Rumors: Breaking Down Post-2018 Trade Deadline Buzz and More

Chris Roling@@Chris_RolingFeatured ColumnistFebruary 9, 2018

Los Angeles Clippers' DeAndre Jordan argues a call in the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Cleveland Cavaliers, Friday, Nov. 17, 2017, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)
Tony Dejak/Associated Press

As it turns out, the Blake Griffin deal was just a small appetizer of sorts compared to what the NBA trade deadline had to offer. 

After endless hype from the trade rumor market, the action itself on deadline day matched the hype in large part because the Cleveland Cavaliers decided to reshape its roster around LeBron James. 

The Cavaliers shipped Dwyane Wade back to the Miami Heat, which the Heat announced. The team also oddly moved on from Isaiah Thomas, sending him to the Los Angeles Lakers in exchange for Jordan Clarkson and Larry Nance Jr., according to ESPN's Adrian WojnarowskiKevin O'Connor of The Ringer added that the Cavaliers sweetened the pot with a first-round pick and Channing Frye. 

That's just a sampling, too, and now we're moving right on to talk about the aftermath of deadline day, which features a handful of nuggets Association fans are going to want to know. 


The Derrick Rose Show

Tony Dejak/Associated Press

It wouldn't be much of a deadline without a rumor about Derrick Rose. 

Rose's stint with the Cavaliers didn't produce much, and he found himself caught up in a three-team trade that landed him with the Utah Jazz, according to Wojnarowski.

His stay in Utah won't last long. 

The New York Times' Marc Stein reported the Minnesota Timberwolves will gun for Rose when he hits the open market: 

Marc Stein @TheSteinLine

The Timberwolves will try to sign Derrick Rose if he clears waivers after his looming release by Utah, according to league sources

Stein followed by noting a reunion is a driving factor behind the pursuit: "With Tom Thibodeau in charge, Minnesota is a natural landing spot for Derrick Rose, who has interest in a reunion, league sources say."

Why not? The Timberwolves, fourth in the Western Conference and hoping to keep teams like the Oklahoma City Thunder at an arm's length, could use an end-of-bench option behind Jeff Teague and Tyus Jones. 

Unlike the Cavaliers, the Timberwolves might not expect more than the 9.8 points and 1.6 assists per game on 43.9 percent shooting he posted in Cleveland over just 16 appearances. 

Alas, depth wins games in the playoffs, and the fit is certainly right—unlike a Utah-Rose marriage. 


The Joe Johnson Market 

David Goldman/Associated Press

A staple of the rumors market for years, especially over the course of his Brooklyn tenure because of his mind-boggling contract, Joe Johnson seemed like he settled in with Utah. 

Now he's on the hunt for a new home. 

Johnson found himself traded to the Sacramento Kings on Thursday in the same Rose transaction. 

Like Rose, Johnson doesn't sound too fond of his new home, according to NBA.com's David Aldridge: 

David Aldridge @daldridgetnt

Joe Johnson will seek a buyout from Sacramento after going to the Kings in three-team deal Thursday, per source. He goes to the top of the list of playoff teams as a pre-March 1 signing (postseason eligible) once that is executed.

Also like Rose, Johnson apparently has at least one possible destination already making the rounds on the rumor mill, per Yahoo Sports' Chris Mannix: 

Chris Mannix @ChrisMannixYS

Joe Johnson is expected to seek--and receive--a buyout from Sacramento, per sources, and will be coveted: Golden State, Boston will be among the early favorites.

For a free agent swept up in a trade and looking for a new home, it's not a bad deal to have the Boston Celtics and the Golden State Warriors interested. 

It's not hard to see why, either. Johnson, 36, averaged 21.9 minutes per game in 32 appearances and posted 7.3 points per game on 42 percent shooting from the floor.

He's been held back a bit by a wrist injury, but his clutch play down the stretch and leadership is an obvious point of attraction for teams attempting to contend for a title. 

In a better situation, which he'll get to personally choose from a list of interested parties, it's easy to see Johnson improving on his season-long numbers while a team like the Warriors gets the classic rich-get-richer scenario as the playoffs approach. 


The DeAndre Jordan Letdown

Mark J. Terrill/Associated Press

With the way the rumor mill drummed it up, it seemed unavoidable Los Angeles Clippers center DeAndre Jordan would end up alongside LeBron with the Cavaliers. 

Instead, he's still the last man standing after the departures of Chris Paul and Griffin. 

From the sounds of it, Jordan simply wasn't what the Cavaliers had in mind. A note by ESPN.com's Ramona Shelburne said quite a bit: 

Ramona Shelburne @ramonashelburne

The Cavs had conversations with the Clippers regarding DeAndre Jordan Thursday morning but by the time things got more serious, the Cavs already had more momentum on several other deals and liked the idea of adding more athleticism, youth and depth better.

The Cavaliers will keep rolling with Tristan Thompson and Kevin Love in the paint and otherwise, with the 29-year-old Jordan stuck on a team hardly above .500 and in ninth place in the Western Conference. 

Perhaps more interesting than anything is Jordan's future outlook stemming from this. The Clippers were obvious sellers, yet this is another checkmark in the box suggesting the league's trend toward smaller, faster lineups with more shooting range isn't slowing. 

Jordan isn't left behind by any means, but he's only averaging 11.5 points and 14.9 rebounds on 65.3 percent shooting from the floor over 32.1 minutes, and his numbers aren't going to look any better with the way the roster around him keeps degrading. 

It'll be interesting to see what happens with Jordan this offseason, to say the least. He has a 2018 player option and, on the open market, might find teams such as the Portland Trail Blazers interested, even if he puts them at a possible disadvantage against a guard-happy lineup such as the one belonging to Golden State. 

From the sounds of it, the Cavaliers won't be in the mix unless they get an assurance from LeBron about the future. 


All stats and info via ESPN.com unless otherwise specified.


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