The 2014 NBA trade deadline is quickly approaching, and more and more rumors are surfacing. The first deal of this trade season was completed this afternoon, with the Sacramento Kings sending Marcus Thornton to the Brooklyn Nets for Jason Terry and Reggie Evans. Now, with less than 24 hours remaining until the deadline, here’s the latest from the around the league.
A Lot of Role Players Being Shopped
According to several executives, deals involving role players are dominating trade discussions right now. There aren’t many big-name players being talked about, at the moment. Instead, executives have been discussing deals that would swap expendable role players, hoping that one team’s trash is another team’s treasure. One executive said that most shopped players have been Charlotte’s Ben Gordon, Memphis’ Tayshaun Prince, New York’s Iman Shumpert, Dallas’ Shawn Marion, Houston’s Omer Asik, Washington’s Eric Maynor and Denver’s Andre Miller among others.
Wizards Continue Search for Backup Point Guard
Last summer, the Wizards were determined to sign a reserve point guard and had expressed interest in Eric Maynor, Mo Williams and Beno Udrih. Washington offered all three veterans the same contract – a two-year deal with a player option in the second year that could pay as much as $4.2 million – and ultimately inked Maynor to the deal. The 26-year-old was expected to bolster Washington’s bench, as he had previously developed a reputation as one of the best backup point guards in the league. However, Maynor has had the worst season of his five-year NBA career and the Wizards are back at square one in their search for a reliable reserve floor general. Washington has talked with a number of teams and their options include Denver’s Andre Miller, New York’s Beno Udrih, Milwaukee’s Luke Ridnour and Cleveland’s Jarrett Jack among others. Since Washington targeted Udrih over the offseason and he’s easily attainable after falling out of New York’s rotation, he may be the most realistic option.
Jeremy Lin to Knicks is ‘Unlikely’
On Tuesday, Chad Ford of ESPN reported that the New York Knicks were interested in acquiring Jeremy Lin from the Houston Rockets. This would be a shocking move, considering New York had the opportunity to match Lin’s offer sheet with Houston but let him walk as a free agent given the contract’s poison pill structure. It’s strange that the Knicks would consider bringing Lin back just as he’s about to enter the third year of his new deal, which was the season that kept New York from re-signing Lin since he will be paid approximately $15 million for the 2014-15 season. If the Knicks weren’t willing to commit that kind of money to Lin when he was coming off of Linsanity, it’s hard to imagine they’d be willing to do it now (on top of giving up an asset to acquire him). A source close to the situation said that it’s “unlikely” that Lin ends up back in New York. You never know what’s going to happen with the Knicks, but this would be bizarre, even by their standards.
Pelicans Shopping Austin Rivers
The New Orleans Pelicans have shopped Austin Rivers to a number of teams in advance of the trade deadline, according to league sources. The Pelicans are exploring many trade options, as their season hasn’t gone as expected, and they’re looking to move one of their guards since they have a logjam at the position. Eric Gordon, Tyreke Evans and Anthony Morrow are other Pelicans guards who have been mentioned in trade talks, according to reports. While Rivers has struggled in the NBA and failed to live up to the hype that was created when he was selected 10th overall in 2011, he is still just 21 years old with immense potential.
Bucks Hesitant to Part With Ersan Ilyasova
The Milwaukee Bucks have been receiving calls about Ersan Ilyasova recently, but the team is unlikely to part ways with him unless they receive an offer they can’t refuse, according to league sources. Milwaukee’s asking price on Ilyasova has been incredibly high, and sources say it’s because owner Herb Kohl is a huge fan of Ilyasova and believes that he can be a star player in the NBA. Even though this doesn’t line up with what others in the organization think and is probably inaccurate, it’s unlikely that Kohl’s favorite player gets dealt.
Rockets Looking to Make Another Deadline Deal
It wouldn’t be a trade deadline without Daryl Morey wheeling and dealing. Houston has been involved in a number of trade talks in recent days, and he’s trying to pull the trigger on a deal before tomorrow’s deadline. Morey’s assets include Omer Asik, Jeremy Lin and Donatas Motiejūnas. Morey has completed a trade at the deadline every year since 2008, and his streak may continue this season. Rival executives say that Houston has been one of the most active teams in the league, so keep an eye on the Rockets.