NBA Trade Rumors: Latest Buzz on John Wall, Carmelo Anthony and More

Zach Buckley@@ZachBuckleyNBANational NBA Featured ColumnistDecember 8, 2018

Washington Wizards' John Wall celebrates during the fourth quarter of an NBA basketball game against the New York Knicks Monday, Dec. 3, 2018, in New York. (AP Photo/Jason DeCrow)
Jason DeCrow/Associated Press

The NBA trade rumor mill runs with enough force to power the entire basketball landscape.

While the chatter inevitably creates far more smoke than actual fires, trade talks can become full-fledged transactions at any time.

Friday night, the Milwaukee Bucks, Cleveland Cavaliers and Washington Wizards came together on a three-team deal that put George Hill and Jason Smith in Milwaukee, Matthew Dellavedova and John Henson in Cleveland and Sam Dekker in D.C.

In other words, it's wise to keep abreast of all the latest trade rumblings, which we've compiled below.

                      

Knicks Stockpiling Assets for John Wall?

Jason DeCrow/Associated Press

As soon as the New York Knicks lost Kristaps Porzingis to an ACL tear, this was always going to be a feeling-out campaign for the 'Bockers. Lesson No. 1 has been this roster needs a lot of work before it competes for anything of significance.

This is still subject to change, but Lesson No. 2 might be the Knicks don't have their point guard of the present or future. They've tried three different starters already—Frank Ntilikina, Trey Burke and most recently Emmanuel Mudiay—and have received middling results from each of them.

That has led some around the Association to believe the Knicks are bracing to make a run at five-time All-Star John Wall, per Marc Berman of the New York Post. Wall, whose four-year, $170 million contract extension kicks in next season, was made available—along with the rest of his teammates—in trade discussions during November, per ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski.

That said, the Wizards have shown more signs of life lately (five wins in their last seven games), so it's unclear if their plans have changed at all. ESPN's Ian Begley also reported the Knicks "haven't had any internal discussions" regarding Wall.

While the Knicks likely need to upgrade at point guard sooner than later, Wall would be a curious target for this rebuilding team. They've been saving space to make a splash in 2019 free agency, and they own their upcoming first-rounder, so it might behoove them to keep their win total low enough to climb up the 2019 draft board.

                                      

LeBron Wants Carmelo Anthony?

LOS ANGELES, CA - OCTOBER 20:  LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers and Carmelo Anthony #7 of the Houston Rockets wait for and inbound at Staples Center on October 20, 2018 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Harry How/Getty Images

LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony are 2003 draft classmates, longtime rivals and friends beyond the game of basketball. So, it's only natural for people to assume they'd like to join forces before their playing days are over—something Anthony told Bleacher Report's Howard Beck in 2016 they've been discussing since before they reached the NBA.

Well, Anthony is estranged from the Houston Rockets and seemingly available for the taking. And James, reportedly, has taken note. League sources told The Athletic's Joe Vardon that James wants Anthony to join him on the Los Angeles Lakers.

There's only one issue—the Lakers don't share that interest, sources told Brad Turner of the Los Angeles Times:

While this could potentially grow into a thorny situation for the Lakers, sources told Vardon that James has not and will not make a personal appeal for Anthony to Lakers president Magic Johnson or general manager Rob Pelinka.

Frankly, the Lakers have been fine without Anthony (tied for ninth in winning percentage), and the Rockets determined they were better off without him. Anthony, who owns a top-20 all-time career scoring average, hasn't had a 41-plus field-goal percentage or even average player efficiency rating since 2016-17.

                     

Suns Shopping Trevor Ariza?

Matt York/Associated Press

Trevor Ariza was never guaranteed a long tenure with the Phoenix Suns after taking the money and running to the desert on a one-year, $15 million deal this summer.

But the 33-year-old's stay with the Suns might be even shorter than anticipated. According to the New York Times' Marc Stein, "Ariza is seen by rival teams at the top of the list of players who will be made available via trade after Dec. 15."

Despite an effort to get more competitive this summer, the Suns again find themselves sporting the league's worst record. They've played some atrocious basketball this season—they scored just nine first-quarter points in consecutive games recently—and have predictably faced reports of internal turmoil.

Whatever Ariza was supposed to fix, it hasn't happened yet. But as a lanky, athletic wing offering defensive versatility and a relatively reliable outside shot (career 35.3 percent from deep), he'd interest any win-now contender who could afford him.

                      

Statistics used courtesy of NBA.com and Basketball-Reference.com.

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