NBA Trade Rumors: Top Buzz on Victor Oladipo, More as 2021 Deadline Approaches

Jake RillFeatured Columnist IMarch 24, 2021

NBA Trade Rumors: Top Buzz on Victor Oladipo, More as 2021 Deadline Approaches

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    Michael Wyke/Associated Press

    The NBA trade deadline is quickly approaching. By 3 p.m. ET on Thursday, the league's 30 teams will no longer be able to make deals, so rumors are swirling about potential moves that could take place before then.

    As the playoffs get closer, there are teams that will be looking to acquire players who can help them make a push toward the postseason.

    On the other side, there are teams that are likely to miss the playoffs who will be looking to move some of their top players to contenders, potentially in exchange for draft picks.

    Here's some of the latest NBA trade buzz ahead of Thursday's deadline.

Rockets Likely to Trade Oladipo

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    Tony Dejak/Associated Press

    After playing only 20 games for the Houston Rockets, Victor Oladipo may be on the move again soon.

    According to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski, the Rockets are "progressing on several fronts" in discussions to trade the 28-year-old, and there's "strong confidence" that a deal will be completed before the deadline. Oladipo was traded to the Rockets from the Indiana Pacers in a four-team deal on Jan. 13.

    Houston is receiving offers that include "young players and first-round pick combinations," which the team has become "increasingly comfortable" with, per Wojnarowski.

    The shooting guard has a "longer-term interest" in going to the Miami Heat, and there's also "mutual interest" with the New York Knicks, according to the report.

    However, there are some concerns regarding the Indiana alum, who has been limited to 84 games since the start of the 2018-19 season due to injury.

    "There has remained some reluctance in the marketplace on Oladipo based on his recent history of injury and missed games," Wojnarowski wrote.

    Since arriving in Houston, Oladipo has averaged 21.2 points, 5.0 assists and 4.8 rebounds in 20 games. He's set to become a free agent at the end of the season, so if a team trades for him, it could be a short-term move to help them make a push for the NBA title this season.

Several Teams Show Interest in Drummond

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    David Zalubowski/Associated Press

    Andre Drummond hasn't played in a game since Feb. 12, as the Cleveland Cavaliers have been looking to arrange a trade for the center.

    And while nothing has materialized yet, the 27-year-old could soon be on the move, potentially ahead of Thursday's trade deadline.

    Bleacher Report's Jake Fischer reported that the Boston Celtics, New York Knicks, Dallas Mavericks and Chicago Bulls are among the teams to have "kicked the tires" on potentially trading for Drummond.

    However, teams such as the Los Angeles Lakers and Brooklyn Nets have been "bullish" on the Cavs finding a trade, which could lead to him taking a buyout and becoming a free agent, per Fischer.

    Drummond was traded to Cleveland from the Detroit Pistons on Feb. 6, 2020, but he's played only 33 games for the Cavaliers since then. This season, he averaged 17.5 points and 13.5 rebounds in 25 games.

    If a team trades for Drummond, it will have to take on his large contract, as he's making $28.75 million this season. However, he's set to become a free agent at the end of the season, so it's possible that a team acquires him as a short-term move before he hits the market this upcoming offseason.

Hill Emerging in Trade Conversations

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    David Zalubowski/Associated Press

    Although George Hill has been limited to 14 games this season due to a right thumb injury, it's possible that the Oklahoma City Thunder will deal him before the trade deadline.

    Having played for seven teams over his 13-year career, the guard could soon be on the move again.

    Fischer reported that Hill's name has "emerged more and more in conversations among team executives" as the deadline gets closer, with the Los Angeles Lakers, Los Angeles Clippers and Philadelphia 76ers being among the teams that have shown interest.

    Hill was sent to the Thunder in a four-team trade on Nov. 23, 2020, after spending the previous two seasons with the Milwaukee Bucks.

    The 34-year-old is averaging 11.8 points per contest and shooting 50.8 percent from the field in 14 games this season, but he's been out of action since Jan. 24.

    Assuming Hill gets healthy and returns to the court this season, he could provide a strong veteran presence off the bench for a contending team. So perhaps he'll soon be on his way out of Oklahoma City and could be on the move yet again after playing for five teams since the start of the 2016-17 season.