We are a mere eight days from the 2016 NBA Draft, which means almost nothing you read or see can truly be believed and anything you hear from agents or GMs could be a smokescreen.
I thought it would be a fun time to dream up a possible trade that could happen on draft night for each of the 14 lottery pick in the 2016 NBA Draft. Will any of these specific trades happen? More than likely no, but there will be a trade or two at least in this year’s lottery and as high as the Celtics no. 3 pick could be dealt in a package for a superstar.
Get ready to have your mind blown as here are 14 hypothetical draft night trades.
The number one pick of the draft basically never gets drafted on draft night with the exception of the 1993 NBA Draft and the infamous Chris Webber for Penny Hardaway trade so there is no way this will happen. but it makes a lot of sense for both teams.
The 76ers have far too many big men on their roster that can’t shoot and can’t stretch the floor with Nerlens Noel, Jahlil Okafor and Joel Embiid if he ever plays. This trade wouldn’t solve that problem but it would prevent them from drafting another guy who has to be a four in today’s NBA and can’t shoot at this point in his career. Ben Simmons could be a transcendent player but he doesn’t fit well with the 76ers current roster. This trade would give them the athletic and defensive point guard they desire along with the ability to pair him with a Jamal Murray type, a stretch four in Dragan Bender or an athletic scoring wing in Jaylen Brown at pick no. 4. As well as another swing at a good player at no. 13.
The Suns meanwhile have a logjam at the guard position (what’s new) and sorely need to deal Eric Bledsoe or Brandon Knight, preferably Knight, and getting a player like Simmons to pair with Devin Booker and Alex Len to rebuild around could be the perfect coo that kick starts their rebuild.
The Lakers believe they are above the traditional rebuild and now that the Kobe era reached its merciful end the Lakers are in search of and entitled to thinking they are line for their next star. The Bulls clearly have some unrest in their locker room and although it would be a very poor decision for the Bulls to trade Butler, a two-way superstar entering his prime, he seems unhappy in Chicago and this could potentially happen. The Bulls could then take Brandon Ingram and hope he becomes Paul George 2.0.
The situation between Cousins and the Kings has been toxic for quite some time and seems beyond repair. The Kings are entering a new era and should cleanse themselves of their 6’10’ 250 lb. problem.
The Celtics have all of the assets and are a player away from true contention in the east and they are the perfect team with the right coach and leadership to take a chance on a obscenely talented player like Cousins. Getting solid role players in Sullinger and Smart and the no. 3 and no. 16 pick is a decent way for the Kings to be able to move forward without Cousins.
This is by far the craziest and most far out there trade proposed yet (not as wild as the 11 player three-teamer proposed by Chad Ford yesterday) but the Clippers seemed to be very frustrated with Blake Griffin’s antics last season and seem to be in a place where they would want to break up “Lob City” and retool with a few draft picks while finding a younger sixth man scorer in Brandon Knight that can also play sorely needed backup point guard minutes. They could then take Jaylen Brown or Marquese Chriss with the no. 4 pick and savvy role player like Denzel Valentine at number 13.
The Suns meanwhile break up their guard logjam and get a superstar to rebuild around and be the face of their franchise.
Jimmy Butler may or may not be on the trade block this offseason along with every other Chicago Bull it seems and you know that new Timberwolves Head Coach Tom Thibodeau would absolutely love to coach Jimmy Butler once again and pair him with Andrew Wiggins and Karl-Anthony Towns to have an elite NBA defense and possibly three two-way superstars. Rubio is a very unappreciated NBA player in spite of his inability to shoot and he would be a nice addition and breath of fresh air for a Bulls team who wants to move on from Derrick Rose and play a more uptempo style.
This would be a nice haul for the Bulls to get for Butler and they could go a number of ways with the number five pick.
The Pelicans are in dire need of rebuilding their roster around Anthony Davis and improving upon their atrocious defense last season by pairing an athletic defensive minded player like Noel with Davis. Also getting a solid shooter and role player in Robert Covington and the number 24 pick makes this trade worth it for New Orleans.
The 76ers meanwhile deal one of their trio of centers and pick up another top notch draft pick to pair with Ben Simmons. If Murray, Dunn and Hield are off the board by six the Pelicans could look to deal.
The Nuggets are in a weird place as a team that has some talent but nothing approaching a star or marketable player and haven’t had one since dealing Carmelo in 2011.
Rose is definitely a risk and won’t be the player he was pre-injuries but he is a marketable star that is only 27 and could still be their cornerstone moving forward.
The Kings are in dire need of a lot of things but the need for a new young star to build around in their new era is paramount. The Lakers are known for acquiring talented big men mid-career and probably wouldn’t be able to pass up the appeal of getting a star like DeMarcus Cousins to be their next great center. This allows the Kings to build around Brandon Ingram or even a potentially great point guard like Kris Dunn.
The Raptors are in dire need of a reliable, defensive minded power forward that can add some extra toughness and knock down open mid-range jumpers and Taj Gibson is that guy. This way they can get another player at 14 and the Bulls can move up, deal Gibson and get a big young point guard with potential in Delon Wright.
The Bucks need a point guard and the Hawks clearly have a desire to deal Jeff Teague and turn their offense over to Dennis Schroeder. Teague is far better than any point guard option Milwaukee will have at 10 and this pick allows Atlanta to draft a wing or big who can step into their rotation right away.
The Magic are in search of a big who can protect the rim and ad some extra hustle and dirty work to pair with the finesse and offensive talents of Nikola Vucevic. Jakob Poeltl is that guy but the Bucks could very well take him at No.10. The Magic then would have to trade up to No. 9 to get Poeltl and the Raptors pick up another future first rounder to move down two spots.
Much like Milwaukee, the Jazz sorely need a point guard who can run the show and Teague seems to be the best one available on the market. Atlanta seems ready to move on from him and a lottery pick may be enough to do it.
The Suns have long been intrigued by the former Arizona standout and although he has struggled to make his mark in the NBA, he could be a very solid stretch four in the small ball NBA that is pervasive today. Taking a chance on a guy who is still only 25 and was once the number two pick in the draft could be worth the number 13 pick. The Knicks would love to get back into the draft, and the lottery as well.
These are two guys on big contracts who have been disappointments in recent years and need new homes. The Kings will likely be looking for a new point guard this summer and maybe a new face of the franchise after dealing Cousins potentially and can try to sell tickets with a former MVP in Rose. Gay can come in and provide an offensive spark and be a nice small ball four for the Bulls.