We are exactly two weeks out from the 2020-21 NBA Trade Deadline, and things are heating up in the rumors realm.
As such, in this week’s edition of our trade rumor rankings series, instead of going with the usual Top 5, we are instead ranking the 10 players who have appeared most in trade scuttle over the past week, as determined by appearances in our Trade Rumors Page.
Below, the Top 10 players with the most mentions in trade rumors recently. Let’s get into it.
Cedi Osman (Cleveland)
A Cedi Osman trade doesn’t appear imminent, but reports did come out this week that state the Cleveland Cavaliers are willing to discuss his availability with other teams, along with that of Taurean Prince and JaVale McGee (via The Athletic):
Cleveland has also been open to discussing forwards Cedi Osman and Taurean Prince and center JaVale McGee in the right deal, sources said.
Cleveland Dot Com’s Chris Fedor further added that Osman’s contract could also be included in a potential Andre Drummond deal as a way to get what would be a tricky financial maneuver done. Osman is a high-energy swingman with streaky three-point shooting numbers for his career (35.8 percent), but he’s the type of player who could be useful for a contender thanks to his effort on both ends of the floor. For more on the Cedi Osman trade front, click here.
Jerami Grant (Detroit)
Detroit Pistons forward Jerami Grant has unquestionably been this season’s Most Improved Player to this point, and as such, interest in him ahead of the trade market is high, in large part because of Detroit’s paltry 10-26 record. However, that doesn’t mean the Pistons plan on trading him ahead of this year’s deadline (via The Athletic):
Grant is in the midst of his best season as a pro, and despite him not being selected for his first All-Star appearance this year, many teams have checked in on his availability and made offers, per league sources. However, Detroit appears to have *no interest* whatsoever in trading Grant, who is averaging 23.4 points this season and is in good position to win the NBA’s Most Improved Award, per league sources.
Regardless, according to TrueHoop, rival executives have wondered if that might change, leading to Detroit deciding to trade Grant for “picks and prospects,” while Shams Charania and Chris Mannix both mentioned the frontcourt-needy Boston Celtics as having an interest in Grant. Per The Athletic’s James Edwards, the Celtics have so much interest in Grant that they offered Detroit multiple first-round picks in exchange for the Syracuse product: https://twitter.com/woodwardsports/status/1369874459218251776?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1369874459218251776%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fahnfiredigital.com%2Fnba%2Fceltics%2Freport-boston-celtics-have-offered-detroit-pistons-multiple-first-round-picks-for-jerami-grant%2F It’s quite unlikely the Pistons trade Grant within the next two weeks, but he’s a player to keep an eye on anyway, as the swingman is almost 27 and not a perfect fit age-wise for a Detroit team that’s so early on in a full rebuild. For more on the Jerami Grant trade front, click here.
Aaron Gordon (Orlando)
Two weeks ago, ESPN’sBrian Windhorst mentioned Aaron Gordon as a player the Orlando Magic might be willing to trade, per conversations among league executives. The Athletic’sJosh Robbinsadded more fuel to the fire by stating that he believed Orlando would try to trade Gordon prior to next season, largely because of the Magic’s plethora of defensive-minded, offensively limited power forwards, including Gordon, Jonathan Isaac, Chuma Okeke and Al-Farouq Aminu. Dealing at least one of them would open up playing time for the rest and help make the roster more balanced, depending on the return. Speaking of a potential return, the one who might bring the richest would probably be Gordon right now, considering Isaac’s recent injury history. Keep an eye on the Minnesota Timberwolves as a Gordon suitor, as The Athletic mentioned them as a potential landing spot for the Magic swingman, while local Minnesota reporter Darren Wolfson also added that the Timberwolves already tried to make a move for him earlier in the year. For more on the Aaron Gordon trade front, click here.
Andre Drummond (Cleveland)
Andre Drummond’s name has remained at the forefront of trade rumors this week, with star NFL wide receiver Allen Robinson (of all people) tweeting that he was hearing Drummond would be joining the Brooklyn Nets via free agency. Obviously, that type of report needs to be taken with a huge grain of salt, but it was interesting, nonetheless. What’s more, Yahoo! Sports’Chris Haynes also reported this week that both Brooklyn and the Los Angeles Lakers are interested in adding Drummond, creating for another interesting showdown between the top contender in both conferences. Regardless, it remains likeliest that the Drummond ordeal ends with a buyout and not with a trade, due to the types of teams interested in his services and the amount of salary-matching that trading for the star big man would require. For more on the Andre Drummond trade front, click here.
Victor Oladipo (Houston)
If reports are to be trusted, look for two-time All-Star Victor Oladipo to be traded for a second time this season, as the veteran 2-guard’s name has continued to be mentioned in scuttle recently. The Athletic’sSam Amicksaid he wouldn’t be surprised if Oladipo was the biggest name player to be dealt at the upcoming deadline:
By the time the deadline comes and goes, I wouldn’t be surprised if Houston’s Victor Oladipo was the biggest name to be on the move. Per ESPN, Oladipo – who will be a free agent this offseason – turned down a two-year, $45.2 million extension offer from the Rockets after he was part of the aforementioned Harden deal. Some rival executives saw this as a tone-setting kind of gesture for future negotiations, a way for the Rockets to make it clear that they want Oladipo to stick around – even though they didn’t expect him to accept the offer. Oladipo discussed this dynamic recently.
In addition, the New York Post’s Marc Berman once again mentioned Victor Oladipo as a “player of interest” for the New York Knicks, stating that team president Leon Rose was considering revamping New York’s frontcourt ahead of their upcoming playoff push. Oladipo is putting up a 20/5/4 stat line this season and would undoubtedly be a solid pickup for whatever team does trade for him, if that were to happen. For more on the Victor Oladipo trade front, click here.
Bradley Beal (Washington)
Washington Wizards star Bradley Beal has somehow managed to find himself in the Top 5 of these rankings yet again this week, despite all indications being that he isn’t going anywhere before the trade deadline – if ever. The Athletic’sFred Katz, who covers the Wizards, was pretty adamant about that this past week:
Today, with the Wizards at 14-20 and Beal’s free agency nearing, rumors of his future in Washington have inevitably swirled, no matter the reality. Sources say the Wizards are not engaging with other front offices who call about Beal, and he has not asked for a trade.
We’re running out of ways to say this but here we go yet again: The Wizards are not trading Bradley Beal within the next two weeks. For more on the Bradley Beal trade front, click here.
Nikola Vucevic (Orlando)
The Magic have struggled this season to the tune of 13-23 record despite the All-NBA-level play of star center Nikola Vucevic, which naturally has led to a lot of trade rumors revolving around the big man. Early this week, a report from The Ringer mentioned the Celtics, Miami Heat, San Antonio Spurs and Charlotte Hornets as teams to have expressed significant interest in Vucevic, while The Athletic also mentioned Boston and Charlotte as wanting Orlando’s big man. However, Marc Stein of the New York Times rained on the parade by reporting the following on Wednesday: https://twitter.com/TheSteinLine/status/1369827438675566593 Nevertheless, things change quickly on the NBA trade market and if a team blows Orlando away with an offer, it wouldn’t be shocking to see Vucevic traded in the next two weeks. For more on the Nikola Vucevic trade front, click here.
PJ Tucker (Houston)
One of the likeliest players to get traded over the next two weeks is PJ Tucker, with Houston struggling as much as they are, Tucker’s contender-friendly play on the defensive end and as a corner-three-point shooter and because of his salary, which pays him around $8 million this season and is set to expire in the offseason, all being major factors. A multitude of teams have already been connected with the veteran forward, including the Bucks, Nets, Heat, Lakers, Nuggets, 76ers and Timberwolves, so we’ll just have to wait and see which offer the Rockets accept. Just expect Tucker to be traded, and likely very soon. For more on the PJ Tucker trade front, click here.
LaMarcus Aldridge (San Antonio)
Although it wasn’t all that surprising to see the announcement from San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich that LaMarcus Aldridge was more than likely going to be traded over the coming weeks and that his time in San Antonio is over, it was a bit shocking to see a team be so upfront about it. Nonetheless, Aldridge is a name that has popped up a lot in trade rumors during his time in San Antonio, and now that his contract is set to expire and his play is declining, it makes sense why the Spurs are finally moving on. According to ESPN’sAdrian Wojnarowski, San Antonio is confident they’ll find a trade partner for Aldridge and that they won’t have to resort to buying him out: https://twitter.com/wojespn/status/1369805843257044993 Look for a bevy of contenders to show interest in Aldridge over the coming days and weeks, and for his next team to be one with championship aspirations. For more on the LaMarcus Aldridge trade front, click here.
Kyle Lowry (Toronto)
Although most of the recent reporting on the matter has indicated Kyle Lowry will remain with the Toronto Raptors through this year’s trade deadline, Lowry recently sounded like a player who could be moving on when talking to the media: https://twitter.com/ekoreen/status/1369814297493307393 However, Sportsnet’sMichael Grangewas pretty adamant recently that Lowry would not be traded before the March 25 headline:
Lowry is not going to be dealt before the March 25 trade deadline. It’s not that the Raptors and Lowry haven’t mulled over the pros and cons of making a mutually agreeable deal for the 15-year veteran heading into free agency, or that there isn’t interest in the six-time all-star who comes with a shipping container’s full of intangibles along with averages of 18 points, 5.5 rebounds and seven assists per game along with 40.3 per cent shooting from deep – all marks that are in the neighbourhood of his career peaks. Beyond that context, surveying the market and assessing where the Raptors are, it’s more and more clear the chances of a deal happening are remote and the notion that Lowry is pushing for one is far-fetched. Lowry made his position quite clear the other day via his Instagram story, but multiple league sources I’ve spoken with over the past two weeks who have reason to know Lowry’s thinking has echoed the theme. The persistence of the speculation is a nuisance, even if the reporting of it is understandable.
Sam Amick of The Athletic reported something similar this week, too:
Speaking of teams heading in the wrong direction, Toronto losing four of five games before the break would seemingly up the odds of the Raptors (17-19) becoming ‘sellers.’ But when it comes to future Hall of Famer Kyle Lowry, there’s a strong sense around the league that the size of this final season on his deal ($30.5 million) may ultimately result in him staying put. Whether it’s that scenario or any other, the sheer number of moving financial parts likely required to get a Lowry deal done would be a hindrance. reported something similar this week.
Lowry’s contract does make things tricky here, as it would take a ton of salary-matching to find a suitable trade for the championship-winning point guard, but Lowry’s play has remained strong this season, and there’s no doubt he’d be a huge pickup for any contender. We’ll see if things change on this front over the next couple of weeks. For more on the Kyle Lowry trade front, click here.