4 NBA Trades That Could Happen Before Draft Day (2020)
Can the Cavaliers find a trade partner for Kevin Love? Is the new leadership in Houston hellbent on sending one of its backcourt stars packing?
There’s been no shortage of trade rumors over the last few days, and we can expect more speculations to come out as we inch our way toward November 18th. Some of these names are just popping up; others have been circulating for months.
As far as the most likely trades before the 2020 NBA Draft, here are four we could see transpire.
Russell Westbrook Lands in Detroit
There’s been talk about the Clippers and Knicks being interested in Russell Westbrook. But are the Clips really ready to part with Paul George, and do the Knicks have enough talent to entice Rafael Stone?
I doubt it.
A team that does have the ammunition to strike a trade for “Beastbrook” is the Pistons.
Detroit could build a package around the 7th pick in the draft, but the Russell Westbrook trade that makes sense is this:
- Pistons Receive: Russell Westbrook, Ben McLemore
- Rockets Receive: Blake Griffin, Derrick Rose
The money works, and don’t be quick to dismiss Russell being interested in going to Motor City. Westbrook’s former agent (Arn Tellem) works in the Pistons front office, plus Detroit’s current GM (Troy Weaver) was the assistant GM of the Thunder who pushed to draft Russell back in 2008. Weaver and Westbrook were together in OKC from 2008-2019.
Chris Paul Winds Up In Phoenix
Sam Presti isn’t just going to give Chris Paul away because the 10X All-Star wants to move to Phoenix. With that being said, a conversation between the Thunder and Suns has at least been initiated.
Paul’s bloated contract and makes him a hard piece to move, but perhaps the following deal makes sense for both sides.
- Suns Receive: Chris Paul
- Thunder Receive: Kelly Oubre Jr., Ricky Rubio
Phoenix gets what they want – a proven backcourt leader to pair alongside Devin Booker. The Thunder get a suitable replacement at point guard and a dynamic 34-year-old wing player who averaged 18.7 ppg last season. On top of that, trading CP3 to Phoenix for Oubre Jr. and Rubio would open up an additional six or seven million in cap space for Presti to utilize in free agency.
Milwaukee Acquires Victor Oladipo
Indiana lured Malcolm Brogdon from Milwaukee in the summer of 2019 and the Bucks have been searching for a combo guard ever since. Some payback for Jon Horst would be to acquire Victor Oladipo from Indiana.
Doing so without parting ways with Khris Middleton would be ideal.
- Bucks Receive: Victor Oladipo
- Pacers Receive: Eric Bledsoe, Robin Lopez
Milwaukee may have to throw in the 24th pick in the upcoming draft, but they promised the Greek Freak they would be aggressive during the offseason. Securing an invigorated Oladipo to plug into the backcourt falls in line with that proclamation.
According to ESPN’s Zach Lowe, Oladipo to the Bucks is without a doubt a trade that could happen before the NBA Draft.
Daryl Morey Gets Al Horford’s Contract Off the Books
This is a lot easier said than done but it’s not inconceivable. We know Daryl Morey is a fan of smaller lineups, so don’t expect to see Embiid and Horford both logging big minutes in Philly.
Shipping Horford out of town is the logical thing to do, but where, and for who? The dude is 34 and is owed around $27 million per season through 2023.
The Sixers could toss in the 21st pick in the 2020 NBA Draft and find a team looking for a veteran big man. Enter the Kings.
- 76ers Receive: Buddy Hield, Nemanja Bjelica, 35th pick in the 2020 NBA Draft
- Kings Receive: Al Horford, Josh Richardson, 21st Pick in the 2020 NBA Draft
It’s evident that the 76ers want to trade to Al Horford, and we know Daryl Morey likes stockpiling shooters (Buddy Hield career 41.1% from beyond the arc). An interior presence is one of the Sacramento Kings biggest needs.
The bonus – each team dumps a contract they desperately want to get off their books.
I think we can call this a win-win.
More on the 2020 NBA Draft
Betting on the NBA Draft is a lot of fun. However, don’t forget about all of the potential trades that could happen before or on draft day.
I listed four that have legs to stand on, but only time will tell to see if they go down. In the meantime, keep your NBA Draft appetite satisfied with the following posts.