December 15 was a big day in the NBA trade market. Now, a big group of players who signed contracts in the offseason can be traded away by their respective teams. This past Saturday could be considered the official start of trade season.
Whether a player is unhappy with his current situation or a team is not satisfied with a player’s performance, it may be time to cut ties and move on.
Pau Gasol is probably one of the biggest names out there on the trading block. It seems like Gasol is just a permanent resident on the list of players who could be on the move.
It is clear that he is not happy in Los Angeles and when the Lakers hired Mike D’Antoni instead of Phil Jackson, it was like sending a message to Gasol that they were moving on without him.
There is no questioning that Pau is still a very talented player and could be a great big man with the right team.
I like the idea of sending him to Minnesota to play with his Spanish teammate Ricky Rubio where he could be a good complement to a power forward like Kevin Love who does not need to clog the paint.
Anderson Varejao is another big man that could be traded. Cleveland has shopped their veteran big man for many years before, but he has never put up the numbers to warrant a team giving the Cavaliers what they were asking for.
Now that he us a consistent double-double every night, Varejao could be a hot commodity to a smaller team looking for some size and rebounding.
Want to take a guess at the three worst teams in the NBA in rebounds per game? The New York Knicks, the Miami Heat and the Boston Celtics. All Eastern Conference contenders that could maybe use a little more size to make a solid push for the NBA Finals.
There are other big names that should be on trade watch as well. The 76ers are reportedly having buyer’s remorse on Andrew Bynum and are tired of waiting for his knees to heal. Maybe they will deal him and his expiring contract, and move on with another center.
Andrea Bargnani has not been putting up the numbers that were expected of him in Toronto and he does not sound like he is happy there either.
Kevin Love has been waiting for the Timberwolves to make a move to improve the team for the future, but if they do not get it together and make a Playoff push, he may want out soon.
This is sure to be an exciting trade season before the deadline on February 21. Be ready for lots of players on new teams and maybe a few blockbuster deals.
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