The action kicked off early with a handful of big trades days before the actual NBA Trade Deadline. Here are all the latest rumors and analysis of every completed deal.
We’ve already seen a few of the biggest dominos fall with Domantas Sabonis and CJ McCollum both traded on Tuesday. Here are the deals we’ve seen completed so far.
Grades for completed deals:
- 76ers and Nets trade problems, Ben Simmons for James Harden
- Raptors turn Goran Dragic into Thad Young
- Four-team trade boosts the Bucks and Kings
- Pacers send Domantas Sabonis to Sacramento for Tyrese Haliburton and Buddy Hield
- Trail Blazers plan for the future, trade CJ McCollum to the Pelicans
- Cavaliers land Caris LeVert to help their playoff push
- Trail Blazers’ rebuild begins, Norman Powell and Robert Covington traded to Clippers
- Knicks dump Kevin Knox, gamble on Cam Reddish
The Boston Celtics traded Dennis Schroder and all they got was this lousy Daniel Theis
The headline is misleading. Theis is fun and was great for the Celtics in the past. Schroder, not so much.
The Wizards are gambling big on Kristaps Porzingis
The Wizards are swinging big, reportedly sending Davis Bertans and Spencer Dinwiddie to the Dallas Mavericks for Kristaps Porzingis.
Everyone in this trade has struggled this season but the Mavericks actually have something to play for and if Bertans and Dinwiddie progress even a little, this could be a huge win.
The Hornets got their center
Earlier in the day it was reported the Hornets were looking to trade with the Spurs for Jakob Poeltl. Considering how small the price was, it’s no surprise they pivoted to Montrezl Harrell from the Wizards.
This makes the Hornets even scarier come playoff time.
Celtics shake things up, without trading Brown or Tatum
The Boston Celtics desperately needed to make a move but they decided they weren’t ready to break up their Jayson Tatum – Jaylen Brown core yet. Instead, they’ve reportedly sent Josh Richardson, Romeo Langford and their 2022 first-round pick to the Spurs for Derrick White.
White has struggled with his shooting this season but he’s a versatile secondary creator who can defend and should definitely make things easier on Brown and Tatum. He’s making about $17 million a year for the next three years but he’s a good addition as they keep looking for more talent.
The Suns are really in win-now mode
The Suns had one meaningful trade chip to use, young big man Jalen Smith who they took with the No. 10 pick in the 2020 draft. He’s shown flashes but they weren’t going to pay him and so getting something for him was important. Apparently, the best something they could find was Torrey Craig.
The Suns also later made a small move to add another shooter to their deep bench.
It’s done! James Harden is headed to the 76ers!
Shams may have been first (and typo-free, surprisingly) but Woj has the full details.
The Harden – Simmons leaks keep coming
Apparently, we’re right at the finish line. The hold up is Matisse Thybulle.
Boston Celtics save some money
The Celtics got themselves out of the luxury tax. Yay.
Charlotte Hornets could be in play for Jakob Poeltl
Jakob Poeltl is one of the best big men who could be available at the deadline and Michael A. Scotto is reporting that the Hornets could be in play.
P.J. Washington has become (a bit) redundant because of the emergence of Miles Bridges and Poeltl would definitely fit a need. Washington isn’t a game-changer for the Spurs but he’d be a nice addition to their young core.
Bucks land some frontcourt help
In a four-team trade without many big names, the Bucks look like big winners.
They clearly didn’t want to pay Donte DiVincenzo his next contract and Ibaka is a great fill-in rim protector and floor-spacer for the injured Brook Lopez. The Kings must like DiVincenzo as a possible replacement for Tyrese Haliburton who they just traded to bring in Domantas Sabonis. The Clippers mostly tread water and the Pistons get to take a low-risk flyer on the immensely talented and incredibly underperforming Marvin Bagley.
The Raptors finally move Goran Dragic
The Raptors have pretty much been shopping Dragic since the moment they acquired him and they finally found a partner, sending him to the Spurs for Thad Young. According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the Spurs are likely to buy Dragic out and the Mavericks have to be the presumed frontrunners.
Young and Dragic were both expiring contracts and neither figured into the present or futures of their old teams. Young is interesting for the Raptors and could play a role as they push for the playoffs, but he duplicates a lot of skills that are already on their roster and it’s hard to imagine them re-signing him after the season.
Kristaps Porzingis on the move?
The Porinzigs fit in Dallas has never been great. And Dallas has long been rumored to covet Goran Dragic. But swapping the two as the framework of a single, two-team trade (as is being reported by Jake Fischer) feels like a negative for both teams. Porzingis could be a tough fit for the chemistry in Toronto and he’s the Mavericks’ only real trade asset. Do they want to send him out just to make sure they have Dragic this season when they could simply wait and sign him at a more reasonable cost this summer?
There is a way the Lakers could get help without trading Russell Westbrook
Trading Russell Westbrook seems like the most obvious way to improve the Lakers but it’s also the most difficult considering his contract and level of play this season. But Hoops Hype’s Michael A. Scotto is reporting on a possible three-team deal that could be a huge help.
James Harden gets Adrian Wojnarowski to say the quiet part loud
According to Adrian Wojnarowski, James Harden desperately wants a trade out of Brooklyn but doesn’t want to actually request one because he’s concerned about how it will look.
But isn’t leaking this to Woj pretty much the same as publicly asking for a trade?
Another deal that might be a prelude to another deal
According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the Jazz, Blazers and Spurs have agreed to a three-team deal that sends Nickeil Alexander-Walker and Juan Hernagomez to the Jazz, Tomas Satoransky and a second-round pick to the Spurs and Elijah Millsap, Joe Ingles and a second-round pick to the Blazers.
For Portland, this is a way to clear more cap space with Ingles’ expiring contract. The Jazz get two pieces they might actually use, deeper in their rotation, during the playoffs, and the Spurs get involved mostly for fun.
Buddy Hield is staying in Indianapolis
The Indiana Pacers picked up Buddy Hield in the Domantas Sabonis trade and given that he’s a few years older than Myles Turner and considerably older than Tyrese Haliburton, it could have made sense for them to try and flip him again. They’d likely have plenty of offers but ESPN’s Zach Lowe is reporting the Pacers plan to keep him.
The Ben Simmons – James Harden trade is definitely happening, or definitely not, depending on who you’re listening to
Brian Windhorst has been banging the drum of this trade being inches from the finish line. His ESPN colleague, Adrian Wojnarowski is reporting that it likely won’t happen. If you try and follow those reports back to their sources, the different takes make a lot more sense.
The Portland Trail Blazers are still chasing Jerami Grant
Per Bleacher Report’s Jake Fischer, the Blazers are looking to add something to the cupboard they’ve just emptied. Grant is a highly sought-after trade target but he seems like much more of a complementary piece than the Blazers roster currently needs. Grant, Lillard and whoever else they can sign into cap space next season doesn’t really sound like a contender, let alone a playoff team.
Indiana Pacers send Domantas Sabonis to Sacramento before the NBA Trade Deadline
The Pacers have been actively shopping most of their roster ahead of the deadline and Sabonis is by far their best asset. The former All-Star is still just 25 and one of the most impactful offensive big men in the league with his combination of passing and touch around the basket. He gives Sacramento a nice complement to De’Aaron Fox but he does push the Kings towards a halfcourt style and pairing him with Richaun Holmes will present many of the same twin-towers challenges the Pacers weren’t able to overcome with Sabonis and Myles Turner. However, it could help push back into the race for a play-in spot this season and the additions of Justin Holiday and Jeremy Lamb will add some shooting on the wings.
For the Pacers, this is clearly a move for the future. In return for Sabonis they get Tyrese Haliburton who looks like a malleable and budding star in the backcourt. Buddy Hield gives them another piece to package in additional deals and Tristan Thompson is a nice expiring contract for them to flip or simply hold for future space. Maybe this means they’re keeping Myles Turner but either way it gives them Haliburton to build around and won’t hurt in their chase for the No. 1 pick.
Trail Blazers finish emptying the cupboard, trade CJ McCollum to the Pelicans
Last week I pointed out the two paths the Trail Blazers could choose from — trading Damian Lillard to rebuild, or trading everyone else to retool. It looks like they’re choosing the latter. McCollum was their best trade chip and they sent him out, along with Larry Nance Jr. and Tony Snell, for Josh Hart, Nickeil Alexander-Walker, Tomas Satoransky, Didi Louzada, a protected first-round pick and two second-round picks. Getting a late lottery pick for McCollum is a small win and Hart is a worthwhile rotation player, but they’re clearly worse off in every way but draft capital and future cap space. This could give them significant room for additional moves this summer but they still need to nail the opportunities that they’ve repeatedly whiffed on over the last few years.
For the Pelicans, this is pushing a lot of chips to the center of the table, hoping to fight for a playoff spot and convince Zion Williamson they are a franchise worth sticking with. McCollum is nice but expensive and, honestly, the Pelicans may have already lost the Zion battle.