With the trade deadline now only three days away, we’re finally seeing the market start to grow. Plenty of new names and teams have jumped into the conversation, and that’s likely only going to continue until 3:00 p.m. ET on February 6th.
So before a bunch of other news breaks, let’s recap the rumors meandering through the hallways of the NBA.
Where the Bulls Stand
- The main rumor for Chicago still centers around Thaddeus Young, though not much has been brewing on that front. The veteran forward signed a three-year $41 million deal this offseason, yet the Bulls haven’t necessarily used him as a core piece. Of course, with Lauri Markkanen sidelined thanks to a hip injury, Young has gotten his chance to play more. In his starting role, he’s looked exactly like the reliable presence that’s got him through 13 seasons in the NBA, averaging 14.5 points, 5.2 rebounds, 2.2 assists, and 1.3 steals over his six starts this season. Is anyone interested? Well, yes, actually!
- The Clippers have been the one team (that we know of) to express “legitimate” interest in Young, though we haven’t received many updates on whether or not the two teams have actually communicated. Still the Clippers seem adamant about adding another big to the rotation, and chances are, Young is still very much a part of the equation:
And, as noted here Jan. 23, lots of rival teams are anticipating at least one trade this week from the Clippers, who have been pursuing a big and a wing even after their home-run summer acquisitions of Kawhi Leonard and Paul George https://t.co/T8tBLCIBa2
— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) February 3, 2020
- Markkanen’s injury might have forced the Bulls to be a bit more hesitant on a possible Young trade. However, even with a healthy Markkanen, moving Young would likely symbolize a waving of the white flag on this season. In the end, Young’s fit hasn’t panned out, and it’s hard to say it ever will with how this team is constructed. Even if he is playing a vital role as a fill-in starter, I still think trading him could prove to be the best outcome.
- The other two players to come up in trade discussions (re: Bulls) are Kris Dunn and Denzel Valentine. News surfaced of the Clippers’ potential interest in Dunn amid the Young reports. Dunn has taken a jump to a pretty elite defensive status this season, and that has certainly improved his worth in the trade market. But with Dunn sidelined thanks to an MCL sprain (we’re still waiting on a timetable for return), the Bulls may have already missed this boat. Depending on the length of his injury, trading Dunn (a restricted free agent this summer) could be impossible.
- No specific team has stepped forward to express their interest in Denzel Valentine (at least not publicly), but the Bulls would apparently “jump” at the opportunity to deal him. Valentine, a strong 3-point shooter with a high basketball IQ, could fit nicely on several competitors looking to boost their second-unit offense (*cough* 76ers *cough*). Although, in return, the Bulls likely wouldn’t get anything more than a second-rounder and expiring contract. Eh, take what you can get.
The Hot Names
- According to the New York Times’ Marc Stein, the Golden State Warriors are listening to trade packages for one-time All-Star D’Angelo Russell, with the Minnesota Timberwolves and New York Knicks expressing the most interest. The Athletic’s Sham Charania elaborated on the Timberwolves’ interest, noting that while the two teams have chatted, the Warriors are looking for substantial draft compensation. Minnesota doesn’t seem willing to give up an unprotected first-round pick, and that’s halting trade talks for now.
- Minnesota remains one of the hottest names to be scavenging the market. Not only do they have an obvious interest in D’Angelo Russell, but the organization has been blunt about the availability of Robert Covington. According to Charania, the Mavericks, Bucks, and Rockets are suitors for RoCo (does he deserve a cool nickname?) right now. Chances are Covington is moved before Thursday’s deadline, but the Timberwolves are likely going to have to budge their asking price, which is being reported as two first-round picks (Which, oof … asking for two first-rounders for a slightly above-average 29-year-old forward when you aren’t even willing to give up one first-rounder for a 23-year-old All-Star? Good luck with that).
- The Knicks have swooped in as possible trade partners for Russell, as well, and reportedly tried to make the Warriors an offer:
- According to SNY’s Ian Begley, Bobby Portis and Frank Ntilikina have come up in conversations with the Warriors, which is consistent with the reported offer Robinson has above. For more, check out his full article:
Bobby Portis, Frank Ntilikina have come up in Knicks talks with GSW about D'Angelo Russell, per SNY sources. Over the summer, Russell was intrigued about the idea of playing for NYK, in part because it would allow him to compete closely against BKN. More: https://t.co/xnFnTeDeTE
— Ian Begley (@IanBegley) February 3, 2020
- ESPN’s Zach Lowe reported that the Kevin Love trade talks have flat-lined and that the Washington Wizards have “waved away” teams interested in Davis Bertans. Earlier this month, those were two of the hottest names on the market yet neither look to be on the move by Thursday. That just goes to show how fast things can change.
- Jrue Holiday’s market has really heated up over the last several weeks. Lowe states the Miami Heat and Denver Nuggets are two of many teams interested in Holiday’s services. Out of the two, Denver has more trade assets to offer, including young talents like Gary Harris and Malik Beasley. Both teams are fighting to separate themselves from the other teams at the top of their respective conference, and grabbing Holiday would be a great way to do just that. Also, for what it’s worth, I would LOVE for the Bulls to get their hands on Holiday. A boy can dream.
All of the Rest
- ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski has reported that the Boston Celtics are interested in the Rockets’ Clint Capela. All season long, it’s been obvious the Celtics have missed a truly reliable big man to complete their playoff-bound rotation. Could Capela be that fit? If you ask me, I think a guy like Tristian Thompson serves their unit better, and the Celtics also get an expiring contract. Capela is only in the second year of a five-year $90 million contract. Yikes.
ESPN Sources: Another team engaged with the Houston Rockets in trade talks for center Clint Capela: The Boston Celtics.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) February 3, 2020
- DON’T FORGET THE MAVS!
The Mavericks still seek a wing upgrade after the acquisition of big man Willie Cauley-Stein — but league sources say Dallas has maintained its reluctance to join the Andre Iguodala trade chase (as reported here in December) and is also not actively bidding on Robert Covington
— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) February 3, 2020
- ESPN’s Zach Lowe also listed the Detroit Pistons and Atlanta Hawks as two teams sniffing around. The Hawks are also expressing interest in Capela and have inquired about Detroit’s Andre Drummond in the past. On the other hand, I’ve seen less and less on Drummond, while Lowe has thrown Pistons names like Christian Wood and Svi Mykhailiuk into the mix (both have received interest from other teams).
- On Lowe’s podcast, ESPN’s Brian Windhorst joined the shows and dropped some pretty interesting news. The NBA Insider said the Washington Wizards could be a surprise “buyer” this deadline. The Wizards are currently 10th in the Eastern Conference and 3.5 games back of the 8th seed, so they technically aren’t out of the race for the playoffs. Windhorst specifically mentions the Cleveland Cavaliers Tristian Thompson as a potential target for them over the next few days. Ugh, there’s all of this talk from the bottom of the barrel in the Eastern Conference, but the Bulls are staying silent!? Boring!
Apple and Spotify links to Lowe Post podcast with @WindhorstESPN previewing the NBA trade deadline:
— Zach Lowe (@ZachLowe_NBA) February 3, 2020
- Even the Magic are making moves. Come on, Bulls.