NBA Rumors: Latest Trade Buzz on JJ Redick, Zach LaVine and Bradley Beal
The New Orleans Pelicans are reportedly trying to find ways to shake things up.
New Orleans fell to 7-11 after Saturday's loss to the Houston Rockets. The strong early play of both Zion Williamson and Brandon Ingram has not resulted in a lot of winning, as the Pelicans rank 21st in the NBA in net rating. Williamson and Ingram are potential cornerstone players, but New Orleans might also be motivated to give its other youngsters a chance.
Shams Charania of The Athletic reported last week the Pels have shown an "openness" to moving both JJ Redick and Lonzo Ball. Trading the two would pave the way for Nickeil Alexander-Walker and 2020 first-round pick Kira Lewis Jr. to get more minutes in the rotation. It appears New Orleans is narrowing its focus in a potential Redick deal.
Here is the latest on Redick's market, in addition to the New York Knicks' interest in Zach LaVine and Bradley Beal's outlook in Washington.
JJ Redick's Market
The Pelicans seemingly have a specific set of trade partners in mind for Redick, who appears interested in playing for these teams.
Shams Charania reported New Orleans is focused on the Philadelphia 76ers, Brooklyn Nets and Boston Celtics as trade destinations for Redick. Each of these teams would make sense.
Redick played for the Sixers prior to signing with the Pels in free agency ahead of the 2019-20 season. There is established chemistry there, and Philly could use another floor-spacer.
The same goes for the Nets and Celtics. Both teams have talented on-ball playmakers but need perimeter snipers who can open up lanes for said playmakers. Redick, whose family lives in Brooklyn, reportedly wants to be back in the northeast, and Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer reported the guard would welcome a trade to all three of the aforementioned teams, in addition to the New York Knicks.
It appears to be only a matter of time before the Pels move Redick. The 36-year-old did not play in each of the team's last two games, and the team could be motivated to move him ahead of the Feb. 2 deadline to "aggregate acquired players in a trade later," Charania noted
Redick's season is off to an abysmal start. He is shooting under 30 percent from beyond the arc through his first 16 games. Still, the former Duke star has made a career of sprinting around screens and making himself available as off-ball threat.
Teams are more likely to bank on Redick's pedigree as a 41.4 percent career three-point shooter, rather than his struggles this season.
Knicks Keeping Tabs on Zach LaVine
The New York Knicks appear intent on pursuing backcourt upgrades.
Shams Charania reported last week that the Knicks are one of the teams showing interest in trading for veteran Detroit Pistons point guard Derrick Rose. But while New York could make a push for the man formerly known as the "Windy City Assassin," it is also keeping tabs on another star currently playing in Chicago.
Ian Begley of SNY.tv reported the Knicks are "keeping an eye" on LaVine's situation in Chicago in the event he becomes available. The 25-year-old will be a free agent in 2022, and might be the centerpiece of a blockbuster in the event current Bulls executive vice president of basketball operations Arturas Karnisovas elects to blow things up.
Alternatively, the Bulls could just as easily commit to the star 2-guard. LaVine has continued his ascent as one of the best offensive players in the NBA, averaging 26.9 points, 5.3 rebounds and 5.2 assists while shooting over 51 percent from the field and nearly 42 percent from beyond the arc.
The Bulls are projected to have the fourth-most cap space in the NBA next year, per Spotrac. Perhaps Karnisovas will shop the likes of Lauri Markkanen or Wendell Carter Jr. instead, surrounding LaVine with new personnel and preparing for a potential max deal in the summer of 2022.
Granted, the Knicks could have the draft capital to appeal to Chicago. As Begley noted, they have five first-rounders in the next three years. LaVine would also be the "star" figure Knicks fans have desired for years.
Ultimately, LaVine's availability could depend on the Bulls' standing come the deadline. Chicago (7-11) is currently 11th in the Eastern Conference following Saturday night's 123-122 loss to the Portland Trail Blazers.
Beal Not on Trade Market
Washington Wizards star Bradley Beal might be the most desirable player in the NBA after James Harden was traded to the Brooklyn Nets. But Beal is not expected to be available anytime soon.
Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN gave the rundown on Beal's future in the nation's capital Friday on NBA Countdown. Wojnarowski said the market for Beal would be "massive" in the event the Wizards began taking inquiries but stated the 27-year-old has not expressed an explicit desire to be dealt.
"He is not going to be on the trade market here in the near future, and he's not expressed really at all yet that he's ready to move on," Wojnarowski said on the show (1:24 mark). "He has loved that city, that organization, and he has fought through a lot there. He's fighting through a lot right now."
Beal has shown his frustration with Washington's struggles. He said as much after a loss to the New Orleans Pelicans last week. The former Florida standout also acknowledged he would try to clean up his body language during games, per Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington.
However, Beal was struggling to follow through with the body language promise during Sunday night's matchup with the Nets. He appeared disinterested in the first half, hardly moving when he was off the ball. But Beal picked up his efforts after the break, scoring 37 points and helping lead the Wizards to an improbable win in the final seconds.
The Wizards (4-12) have a long way to go to climb back into contention. But Beal seems to be up for the challenge, at least for now.
All stats obtained via Basketball Reference, unless otherwise noted.