NBA trade ideas to blow up the 2023 Playoffs
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The NBA trade market is out of control due to several factors.
The first factor is tournament play. As it stands, two-thirds of the NBA qualify for the postseason. This makes teams wait longer to see if they can make their way to the championship and possibly the playoffs before trading an important piece.
The other factor stems from Rudy Gobert’s trade to Minnesota. The Timberwolves paid Joubert so high that other teams have a high rating for their players. Some of it is just posturing, and some of it is irrational.
Many teams have also made trades with future picks, leaving them with little or no draft stock to make another trade.
This trade deadline may be useless if the teams are unwilling to lower the required prices. Not everyone deserves to be picked unprotected first round. Just because Minnesota overpaid for Joubert doesn’t mean every other team will.
With that in mind, here are some business ideas for teams looking to battle for a championship this season.
Memphis Grizzlies take a huge swing
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Memphis Grizzlies receive: OG Anunob
Toronto Raptors receive: Danny Green, David Ruddy, 2023 first-round pick, 2024 first-round pick (via GSW), 2025 first-round pick (Sweepstakes Reserve)
The Toronto Raptors are at a crossroads. At the time of writing this article, five games under . 500 are out of the tournament. The general vibe around the team has not been good, and teams are watching to see if they blow it up and build around Scotty Barnes.
At the same time, the Western Conference is here to make the decision. It’s the perfect time for the Grizzlies to swing big with a locker full of assets and a ticking clock as this list gets even more expensive.
Memphis have all their picks, plus the Golden State Warriors protected in the top four in 2024, protected #1 in 2025 or unprotected in 2026. They also have an expiring contract with Danny Green to help facilitate the trade as well as a ton of talent young lady.
If the Raptors choose to blow it up, the Grizzlies need to feel free to put together a package for the OG Anunoby. Many iterations of this trade work, but using the Green as a base piece to help make money matching is key. The Raptors could ask any young player from David Roddy, Ziaire Williams, Jake LaRavia, or Jon Konchar, too.
The three draft picks are the real prize of the deal, especially a heavily protected Warriors pick. This could be an additional lottery pick as early as the 2024 draft.
It’s really cool to get three draft picks for a player who has a year and a half left in his deal (not including the 2024-25 player option).
For Grizzlies, it’s more than just adding Anunoby; It will also give them insurance as Dillion Brooks enters unrestricted free agency at a later date.
Get a great backup from the Denver Nuggets
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Denver Nuggets receive: Isaiah Hartenstein
New York Knicks receive: 2024 second-round pick, 2025 second-round pick
The Denver Nuggets sit at the top of the Western Conference by a very thin margin and have a desperate need for a backup center.
The numbers are screaming again. Nikola Jokic has 23.2 points for net swing (plus -12.6 when it’s on; minus -10.6 when it’s off). The Nuggets can’t get into the playoffs with that still being an issue.
Isaiah Hartenstein would be the perfect big man behind Jokic. He had a short stint with Denver in the 2020-21 season, so there is some familiarity. Playing in the second unit, he would begin to diminish that massive swing in the Nuggets’ experience, and also fit in with the exception of a trade to Denver from the Monte Morris and Will Barton trades during the offseason.
So the question is: why would Knicks make this trade?
A trade would leave them vulnerable at center, but the Knicks have to look forward to distributing their minutes. Give more minutes to Jericho Sims, who per 36 The numbers are comparable to Hartenstein’s. Try playing Obi Toppin and Julius Randle. Playing on a small scale wouldn’t be a bad idea for New York.
This is an asset play for Knicks. Hartenstein was good at averaging just under 20 minutes per game and had Somewhat positive net rating. He’s not good enough to fetch a first-round pick, but collecting draft assets is a better game for New York than being a trade-deadline buyer this season.
The Knicks are loaded with plenty of young players and draft assets to be players in the next hunt for a star who becomes disaffected. This trade will only add to their asset treasury.
Be a seller, Nix – not a buyer.
3 problem-solving teams
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Dallas Mavericks receive: Pascal Siakam, Robin Lopez, Dallano Pantone
Cleveland Cavaliers receive: Tim Hardaway Jr., Juancho Hernangomez
Toronto Raptors receive: Kevin Love, Christian Wood, Josh Green, 2023 second-round pick (CLE), 2025 first-round pick (DAL), 2027 first-round pick (DAL)
Three-team deals are difficult to execute no matter the situation. There are two caveats to this trade.
The first is the assumption that the birds of prey will rebuild. The second is that the Mavericks restored protection in their protected 2023 lottery pick to the New York Knicks so they can trade unprotected first-rounders in 2025 and 2027. Assuming those caveats are met, this three-team trade could help everyone involved.
For the Raptors, they’re getting a big break with Kevin Love and Christian Wood’s contracts expiring this season, both of whom fit the need for a true center. Most importantly, they will get two unprotected draft picks from the Mavericks as well as a 22-year-old in Josh Green who has shown flashes this season. He has grown as a three-point shooter in limited minutes, connecting on 44.4 percent of his 2.2 attempts per game.
Cleveland is limited in assets after making a trade to Donovan Mitchell. The best asset is the expiration date of the love contract. That won’t be available to the Cavaliers after the trade deadline, and they currently have a massive third point gap.
Tim Hardaway Jr. is Development He is above Isaac Okoro offensively and will require attention defensively, opening up more space for Mitchell and Darius Garland. Another added bonus: Hardaway has two more years in his deal after this season, providing insurance should Caris LeVert leave in the offseason.
For the Mavericks, this is a huge gamble similar to the one they took on Christaps Porzies. The difference is that Pascal Siakam has been healthier during his career and will give the Mavs not only a star offensive second but also a defensive boost. Dallas needs to find someone to partner Luka Dončić, and Siakam could be the perfect fit.
It’s a gamble to serve two unprotected first-round picks, but it’s better than wasting another Dončić season — especially with the West wide open.
Birds of prey add center
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Toronto Raptors receive: Miles Turner
Indiana Pacers receive: Chris Boucher, Dallano Pantone, Christian Koloko, 2023 first-round pick (protected by lottery), 2025 second-round pick
Previous deals up to this point hinged on the Raptors deciding to tear it down and start over. But if Masai Ujiri decides to take the other path and build a competitive team, they need to look to the center position.
Toronto experimented with the idea of playing a variety lineup called “Vision 6-9”. This left them playing without a real position.
Given their 20-25 record, it’s safe to say the vision didn’t pan out.
Indiana Pacers do not want to trade Miles Turner. They want to extend it, however Mark Stein I recently reported that Turner turned down their latest offer. Years of being on the trading block may have left Turner wanting to move. If the Pacers and Turner can’t come to an agreement on an extension, Indiana needs to trade him before he walks for free in free agency.
Toronto should make a bid centered on rookie center Christian Koloko.
Koloko isn’t much of a stretch for Turner, but in limited minutes this season he’s been average 1.1 blocks and 3.4 rebounds. Extend that to every 36 minutes and his numbers jump to 2.6 blocks and 7.8 boards. Koloko is a development piece, and in the meantime Chris Boucher could act as a replacement for Turner.
The Pacers clearly want an unprotected first-round pick. Maybe the teams can meet in the middle and make it into the protected top 10, but that’s a tough sell for me. The main reason is that Turner was in the last year of his deal and could just be a rental to the Raptors. It’s hard to even submit a draft in the first place.
The birds of prey will get a true center and edge protector. Perhaps just as importantly, he will be one of the best three-point shooters in Toronto. This will create more space on the floor for Pascal Siakam, Scotty Barnes and Fred VanVleet.
The Phoenix Suns finally moved Jay Crowder
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Washington Wizards receive: Jay Crowder, Josh Okoje, 2023 first-round pick
Phoenix Suns receive: Kyle Kuzma
This is a very big game of chicken for Washington. The Wizards have announced that they want to keep Kyle Kuzma if he chooses to cancel his contract this season. But as Mark Stein It stated, “The belief persists in various corners of the NBA map that Kuzma would prefer an off-season transfer but perhaps this is wish-thinking on the part of teams coveting him.”
If Washington thought they couldn’t keep Kuzma, they would get a lot of phone calls about him. The first call should come from the Phoenix Suns. They were without Jay Crowder, who asked for a trade before the season started and didn’t play a single minute.
Kuzma, another tall, skinny winger who has grown out on both ends of the field, fits in perfectly with the Suns. He has become a reliable defender, but more importantly, he has improved with his dribbling. Phoenix desperately needs more firepower on the offensive end. The weight of the offense is being placed on Devin Booker and Chris Paul, who is starting to show his age (37).
Crowder would fill a need as a more spunky body for the Wizards. Although he lost a step, he would strengthen Washington’s defensive front court. Deni Avdija and Rui Hachimura are similar body types, Crowder gives the treats more beef.
The real prize for the Wizards is getting an unprotected first-round pick in the upcoming draft. Phoenix might try to protect the pickaxe, but there’s going to be a massive bidding war for Kuzma. It would be a huge price to pay for the Suns, but they simply can’t hold out because their championship window is closing.