Impact Players Most Likely To Be Moved
(Ranked from most likely to least likely to be traded)
1. Josh Smith, F, Hawks
The consensus around the league continues to be that Smith is gone, either by trade or free agency. The situation in Atlanta continues to deteriorate to the point that the Hawks seem to have little choice but to let him go now -- unless they can find a way to pry away Dwight Howard from the Lakers to play alongside his friend Smith.
The latest intel, via our own Chris Broussard, has the Nets entering the picture for Smith. The question is whether a package of Kris Humphries and MarShon Brooks is enough to make a deal. That's doubtful. The Hawks would prefer a young center.
The Spurs have been mentioned as a possible suitor, but unless they are willing to part with Kawhi Leonard (highly unlikely), they don't really have the assets.
Look for the 76ers, who have been dangling both Spencer Hawes and Evan Turner to other teams, to be a potential landing place.
2. Brandon Jennings, PG, Bucks
The Bucks say adamantly they aren't shopping Jennings, but they may have to listen seriously to offers for their young point guard the next few days.
While Jennings is their most promising young player -- the one guy who could be a potential star player to build around -- GM John Hammond is in a bit of a quandary. Not only is Jennings looking for a huge payday this summer (one the Bucks may not be able to afford), he's also looking for a contract from a team other than the Bucks.
Jennings has, according to one source, "irreconcilable differences" with Milwaukee. He's frustrated, according to sources, that the two sides weren't able to work out a long-term extension this summer. In addition, he feels as though he doesn't get the attention he deserves and wants a bigger market to take his talents to.
Jennings isn't bluffing. He recently changed agents in an attempt to get some traction on his relocation. Jennings' marching orders for his new representation? Get him out of Milwaukee, either by the trade deadline or via a toxic offer sheet from another team this summer.
The Bucks have Jennings' restricted free-agency rights and can match any offer, but if the Mavericks, Hawks, Magic or another team makes a huge bid, the small-market Bucks may not be able to afford or want to match.
So do they make a preemptive move now and get something in return or do they gamble that Jennings doesn't get a big offer this summer? With so many teams under the cap this summer, and so few talented point guards available, the team could be in serious danger of losing him for nothing.
3. Andrea Bargnani, F/C, Raptors
The Raptors' move to land Gay is unlikely to be their last one. The combination of Gay and Bargnani doesn't make much sense, and the Raptors have been looking for a new home for the big Italian.
As Marc Stein reported, there have been discussions toward a Carlos Boozer-for-Bargnani trade. But that trade is expensive for Toronto, which, according to sources, would prefer to land a point guard to replace Jose Calderon in any Bargnani trade.
4. Al Jefferson or Paul Millsap, F/C, Jazz
As usual, the Jazz aren't tipping their hand. Therefore, take the rumors about Jefferson and Millsap with a grain of salt. Perhaps neither will be moved.
But with the Jazz looking to give Enes Kanter more time in the paint, something is going to give sooner or later. The Jazz can't afford to re-sign both Jefferson and Millsap, so the most likely scenario has them moving one before the deadline.
5. Marcin Gortat, C, Suns
The Suns continue to be active in their pursuit of players who can lift them out of their morass. Gortat and forward Jared Dudley appear to be the bait, though the truth is that anyone on their roster is available.
What's less clear is what the Suns are actually looking for. We've heard everything from Al Jefferson to Iman Shumpert -- yet another sign that the Suns don't appear to have a coherent rebuilding plan.
6. J.J. Redick, SG, Magic
Redick is having a career year, and the Magic know that he'll get a big offer this summer when he hits unrestricted free agency. With the Magic in the process of a major rebuild, Redick isn't a priority in their long-term plans. With so many teams looking for shooting, moving him now could net them a nice asset or two.
Marc Stein reported over the weekend that the Bucks were interested in Redick. The Bulls and Pacers are two other obvious fits.
7. Evan Turner, G, 76ers
The former No. 2 pick in the draft is having the best season of his career. With Andre Iguodala out of the picture, his minutes are up, as are his points, rebounds and assists per game.
What hasn't really changed is Turner's inefficiency. There are nights when he truly looks worthy of being the No. 2 pick, but there are as many or more times when he is frustratingly wild. For a player who is already 24 years old and has almost three seasons under his belt, that's cause for concern.
The Sixers would love to get a sweet-shooting 2-guard or a real power forward in return. Given Turner's upside as a player with great versatility, there might be a market for him in a place like Utah, which is searching for a young guard who can handle the ball.
8. Danny Granger, F, Pacers
Granger has yet to play a game for the Pacers this season. He's eyeing a return Wednesday, which would give him only two games at less than 100 percent to prove his trade value.
The Pacers face a dilemma. Granger could put them over the top in the East, or his return could damage their team chemistry and hinder the development of Paul George. Either way, the team is unlikely to be able to afford him in the long term and will probably have to shop him this summer.
If the Clippers can't land Paul Pierce or Kevin Garnett, they could be strong suitors for Granger if they are convinced he can stay healthy.
9. Carlos Boozer, PF, Bulls
Boozer has been solid in his tenure with the Bulls, but the team has known for a while that it would prefer to move his contract to get more salary flexibility in the future. The Bulls have Taj Gibson to take many of Boozer's minutes and would love to add some perimeter shooting to balance out the team once Derrick Rose returns.
The aforementioned deal for Bargnani would give the Bulls a big man who can really spread the floor. The return of Ben Gordon may be another option for Chicago in a potential three-way deal with Charlotte and Brooklyn.
10. Kevin Garnett, PF/C, Celtics
KG won't be going anywhere unless he gives the trade his green light, as he is one of only four players in the NBA with a no-trade clause.
But talk of the Celtics and Clippers pulling off a swap that would bring Eric Bledsoe and Caron Butler to Boston does make sense for both teams. Boston GM Danny Ainge and Clippers coach Vinny Del Negro have a long history together, and a Clippers team that adds Garnett might have the juice to make the NBA Finals and even knock out the Heat. That could be enough to tempt Garnett to sign off on such a deal.