Most teams have played about 15 games so far. There is still a lot of basketball yet to be played, but teams already know their strengths and weaknesses. Some believe they will get better as the season goes on just by coaching, health, and natural progression. On the other hand, some teams know they need help. Meaning they need to make a trade.
Now the trade deadline isn’t until February, but teams are always doing their homework seeing who might be available around the team. Getting trades done is tricky, both sides have to feel like they won, and the smart teams have to be realistic about where they are out. Some trades signal were going all in on this season, while some message were punting this season. Due to rough starts, bad situations, contract disputes, there are already some good players who may be on the trade block. Here are five trades that make sense for both teams.
Los Angeles Lakers Receive: Frank Kaminsky, Johnny O’Bryant, Second Round Pick(From Cle or Brk, less favorable)
Charlotte Hornets: Julius Randle
Why it works for the Lakers- Randle is not in the Lakers long-term plans. They were starting Larry Nance Jr and now Kyle Kuzma ahead of him even though Randle is playing well. The Lakers are a young team, and they want to go big game hunting this summer, so might as well get rid of Randle now. In this trade, they get a second-round pick, from Brooklyn so it will be high, remember they don’t have a first this year, so this way they will get two second-round picks. Plus they get Kaminsky who is only in his third year and still getting better. He can back up both Brook Lopez and Larry Nance Jr at the four or the five. They also get an intriguing young center in Johnny O’Bryant.
Why it works for the Hornets- Charlotte has a need at the fou. Marvin Williams is getting old, and Kaminsky is probably better as a small ball five. With Randle they can get a young power forward, who can score, rebound and pass. The fit with Howard is not perfect, but you don’t pass on adding a young talent like this. Randle would undoubtedly help improve Charlotte’s weak offense, and he is better on defense than he gets credit for. Losing a second round pick hurts, but Randle is worth it.
Denver Nuggets Receive: Goran Dragic, Justice Winslow
Miami Heat Receive: Emmanuel Mudiay, Kenneth Faried, Second Round Pick(From Por or Sac, less favorable)
Why it works for the Nuggets- Denver’s offense has stalled since last years fun offense revolving around Jokic. It’s clear they need one more playmaker. Jamal Murray is more suited as a scorer off the bench. With Dragic they get a veteran point guard who can run the offense, and also is a good enough shooter to play off of Jokic. They also get an intriguing young wing in Justice Winslow, who will immediately help their defense. Plus his offense is coming along.
Why it works for the Heat-Miami has got off to a rough start, and its time to shake things up. Int his trade they get a young point guard in Mudiay, who is playing the best basketball of his career and can be their point guard of the future. They also get Kenneth Faried who can small ball five for them, and the four. Most importantly they get a good second round pick coming from Sacramento, which is essential because they have no picks in this year’s draft.
Utah Jazz Receive: Robin Lopez, Bobby Portis
Chicago Bulls Receive: Derrick Favors, Second Round Pick
Why it makes sense for the Jazz- It is safe to say the Derrick Favors Rudy Gobert pairing is not working for the JAzz. Favors is best at the five, and Gobert is the center of the future for Utah. In this trade, they get a great back up to Gobert in Robin Lopez, plus a promising young power forward in Bobby Portis who can give them a bit more firepower. Utah is one of the worst offenses in the league. Portis would fit well next to Gobert, and Lopez is a good insurance policy if Gobert gets hurt again.
Why it makes sense for the Bulls- Chicago is going nowhere this season. Lopez is a good player, but he doesn’t fit the Bulls timeline. Portis is also good, but he punched a teammate in the face, so he is gone. Plus Lauri Markkenan is the power forward of the future. In this trade, they get a young center in Favors who can play next to Markannen for years to come. Plus they get a second-round pick, which will give them three picks in this years draft, perfect for a rebuilding team.
Toronto Raptors Receive: Jon Leuer, Boban Marjanovic, Henry Ellenson, Second Round Pick
Detroit Pistons Receive: Jonas Valancunias
Why it makes sense for the Raptors- It is no secret the Raptors want to trade Valancunias. He is a good player but can struggle in the playoffs, and the Raptors want to play Serge Ibaka at the five more and also find minutes for Jakob Poetl and Lucas Nogueira. In this trade, they get a solid rotation player in Jon Leuer, depth at the five in Boban Marjanovic and an intriguing young power forward in Henry Ellenson. Most importantly they get a second-round pick, which is enormous because they have no picks in this year’s draft.
Why it makes sense for the Pistons- Detroit has been one of the surprises of the season. Where they have struggled is depth up front. Valancuinas gives them an offensive minded big that they can run the offense through for the second unit. Valancunias would be a great back up to Andre Drummond, and its the role he is best at. He gives them a legitimate post-up threat, something Drummond can’t do.
Cleveland Cavaliers Receive: Thaddeus Young, Glenn Robinson III
Indiana Pacers Receive: Iman Shumpert, Cedi Osman, Ante Zizic
Why it makes sense for the Cavaliers- Cleveland stinks on defense. Sure they will get a little better as the season goes on, but it will be an issue all season. In this trade, they get two versatile defenders in Thaddeus Young and Glenn Robinson III. Young can play the four or small ball five for them and switch across multiple positions. Robinson is a very stout wing defender. This is a good way for Cleveland to get defensive help without giving up too much.
Why it makes sense for the Pacers: The most significant hole in Indiana is on the wing. Boban Bogdanovic is not the small forward of the future. In this trade, they get a capable wing defender in Iman Shumpert who can play multiple positions, and they get two intriguing young prospects. Cedi Osman is a young small forward the Pacers can develop, and Ante Zizc is a young big, the Pacers can also develop. Moving Young also opens up more minutes for youngsters Domantas Sabonis and T.J Leaf.