There are seemingly new rumors and reports every day as the NBA trade deadline draws nearer. The Feb. 9 deadline this season might be particularly intriguing given how evenly the league is playing. Many teams may be considering moves because they believe they have a chance to make a serious run. It can be difficult to keep up with everything, but we’ll try our best to protect you. Here are a few recent rumours that have surfaced throughout the league.
Normally, Luka Doncic stays out of Dallas’ front office discussions, but this year, the star guard has “seriously stated” that he wants to see some roster upgrades before the trade deadline, according to ESPN’s Tim McMahon.
Even though Doncic is playing at a high level this season and is a strong candidate for MVP, the Mavericks are only three games above.500 in the tough Western Conference.
The Mavs have limited options given the way their roster is currently set up, but if Doncic wants to see some changes as reported, they’ll be a club to watch in the days leading up to the trade deadline.
Before the deadline, the Washington Wizards might be trying to change things up. According to The Athletic, the Wizards have started negotiations with several teams about trading big forward Rui Hachimura. As a restricted free agent this offseason, Hachimura is expected to receive interest from a number of Western Conference teams. Hachimura may give a competitive club some extra scoring since he is averaging 12.9 points, 4.4 rebounds, and 1.2 assists per game this season.
The Wizards have drawn a lot of attention in forward Kyle Kuzma as well as Hachimura. However, according to The Athletic, Kuzma is highly valued by Wizards team officials, who would like to re-sign him during the summer. Although it’s possible, it seems improbable that Kuzma will be transferred before the deadline.
Prior to the deadline, Jakob Poeltl of the San Antonio Spurs has attracted some trade interest. Two groups that have been identified as potential suitors are the Toronto Raptors and the Boston Celtics. According to Jared Weiss of The Athletic, the Spurs have set a high asking price for Poeltl of two first-round picks. For the Spurs this season, Poeltl has averaged 12.3 points, 9.3 rebounds, 2.9 assists, and 1.3 blocks per game. Although the Celtics are interested, they don’t appear inclined to agree to San Antonio’s high demand.
As the deadline draws near, there’s a chance that the Spurs will lower their asking price, so anticipate Boston to keep an eye on the issue.
There won’t be any major trades like the one that involved Ben Simmons and James Harden between the 76ers and Nets last year, but that doesn’t mean there won’t be any shocks. As the deadline draws nearer, we’ll keep you updated on all the speculations, beginning with this latest batch of whispers throughout the league.
The Clippers are currently sixth in the West and are still in the heart of the playoff chase despite needing reinforcements. The Clippers are reportedly considering Jazz guard Mike Conley while John Wall is out for at least two weeks with an abdominal strain, according to Marc Stein. The Clippers want to bolster their frontcourt behind Ivica Zubac, who is playing a career-high 30 minutes per game, in addition to Conley. Moses Brown, a two-way player who is the only other real center on the Clippers, has had some good moments but is insufficient if Los Angeles hopes to compete in the postseason.
According to The Athletic, the Timberwolves’ interest in Conley is related to trade rumors involving D’Angelo Russell, who will be an unrestricted free agent this summer. Conley’s addition would at least guarantee the Wolves’ point guard for the remainder of the season if Russell is traded.
The Athletic reports that the Jazz have been “most engaged” in a deal for John Collins, although Stein notes that the Wizards, Nets, and Indiana have also expressed “different degrees of interest.”
Given that Utah is currently ranked eighth in the West and has fallen in the standings after an unexpectedly strong start, this rumor may be the most intriguing one at the moment. Additionally, the Jazz already have Lauri Markkanen, who fills Collins’ position and has been playing at an All-Star level this year. Although many would likely argue that Utah should be selling instead of buying before the trade deadline, it’s unlikely that the Jazz will lose enough games at this time to qualify for the Victor Wembanyama sweepstakes, so perhaps the front office would prefer to make a serious postseason push.
If Toronto makes Fred VanVleet available, The Athletic claims that Phoenix and Orlando are also interested in the Raptors guard.
Since Devin Booker suffered a groin strain, Phoenix has been in a free fall. In addition, Chris Paul’s performance was below standard, and Cam Johnson wasn’t there. The Suns, who were near the top of the conference before Booker’s injury, are now 12th in the West. Therefore, it is not unexpected that Phoenix wants to improve its backcourt while Booker is out. VanVleet would undoubtedly improve Phoenix’s roster, both while Booker is absent and after his return. Uncertainty surrounds what the Suns would have to give up to get the All-Star guard.
Given their likelihood of winning the lottery this summer, it’s surprise that The Magic are interested in VanVleet. Although VanVleet would improve their roster, they currently have a youthful core of players, therefore there isn’t much of a need for him.
Given that Detroit is now going through a rebuild and that it wasn’t entirely obvious what it planned to do with Bojan Bogdanovic, there was shock when the Pistons acquired him. It was also puzzling when the team extended his contract during the season because many people anticipated that he would be a top trade target when the trade deadline came around. According to The Athletic, the Pistons continue to say they’d prefer to keep Bogdanovic, but the other clubs that are reportedly interested in him may cause them to reconsider. Bogdanovic is apparently available, and the Pistons are reportedly looking for an unprotected first-round selection in exchange for him from the Lakers, Bucks, Pelicans, Cavaliers, and Mavericks.
D’Angelo Russell has garnered interest from the Heat. This summer, Russell will be an unrestricted free agent, and according to The Athletic, “no sign of an extension” has been made with the Timberwolves. If so, it makes sense why Russell is up for trade as well as why the Wolves are interested in Conley. The Heat are attempting to enhance their point guard position, but according to Stein, if Miami deals Russell, Minnesota might be forced to take Kyle Lowry in exchange, a move that the organization does not want to make.