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10 NBA Trades That Need To Happen Before The February Trade Deadline

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10 NBA Trades That Need To Happen Before The February Trade Deadline

The NBA trade deadline is almost here in the NBA, and it's likely that there will be a lot of player movement. A lot of teams are looking to improve their rosters, while others will be looking to unload players due to disappointing seasons. 

In this article, we will cover 10 trades that need to happen before the trade deadline. Not all of these will necessarily happen. However, these are some scenarios that would benefit the teams involved and help them fulfill their goals.

10. Kemba Walker To Denver Nuggets

Kemba Walker

Denver Nuggets Receive: Kemba Walker

New York Knicks Receive: JaMychal Green, 2024 second-round pick (DEN), 2025 second-round pick (DEN)

Kemba Walker has not had a great season with the New York Knicks, with his role consistently changing. He was even out of the rotation for a good portion of the season. Perhaps it could be best for both him and the New York Knicks to move on from one another.

This trade would allow the New York Knicks to get a solid veteran in JaMychal Green and draft compensation in the form of two second-round picks for Kemba Walker. Moving Walker would free up minutes for players like Immanuel Quickley to develop. JaMychal Green is having a down year, but he is a career 37% 3PT shooter on a decent contract. Perhaps they could trade him later on for more assets as well.

On the Denver Nuggets' end, Kemba Walker would be a solid 6th man coming off the bench. He is a great shooter that can heat up at a moment's notice. He would provide great insurance for the Denver Nuggets in case Jamal Murray is unable to come back for the playoffs and would help lessen some of the offensive load on Nikola Jokic.

9. Caris LeVert To Cleveland Cavaliers

Caris LeVert

Cleveland Cavaliers Receive: Caris LeVert

Indiana Pacers Receive: Ricky Rubio, 2022 first-round pick (CLE), 2024 first-round pick (CLE)

The Cleveland Cavaliers have been looking for a guard to pair with Darius Garland for quite some time. Perhaps Caris LeVert could be that player, and the Cavaliers have notably been linked with LeVert in the past.

This trade package would grant the Indiana Pacers two first-round picks to help their rebuild, as well as Ricky Rubio's expiring contract. This seems like fair value for a talented player who is slightly inefficient but can make plays for others and score.

On the Cleveland Cavaliers, Caris LeVert could potentially thrive as a scorer with the improved spacing next to shooters like Kevin Love, and he could be a secondary ballhandler behind Darius Garland. Overall, this seems like a good way for the Cleveland Cavaliers to acquire a solid guard that could potentially help the team with his shot creation in the playoffs.

8. Dejounte Murray To New Orleans Pelicans

Dejounte Murray

New Orleans Pelicans Receive: Dejounte Murray

San Antonio Spurs Receive: Tomas Satoransky, Jaxson Hayes, Nickeil Alexander-Walker, 2023 first-round pick (NOP), 2022 second-round pick (NOP), 2022 second-round pick (CLE)

The New Orleans Pelicans have slowly been climbing towards a play-in tournament spot after starting 1-12 this season, even with the absence of Zion Williamson. Brandon Ingram has been playing fantastic All-Star caliber basketball, putting up 22.4 PPG, 6.1 RPG, and 5.2 APG. This trade would get the Pelicans some immediate help for their star, while also fulfilling the need for a true point guard.

The San Antonio Spurs would get an expiring contract in Tomas Satoransky, as well as two young prospects in Jaxson Hayes and Nickeil Alexander-Walker. Nickeil Alexander-Walker profiles a shot creator who could potentially develop into a solid two-way player, while Jaxson Hayes is an athletic lob threat with a good ceiling. The San Antonio Spurs would also get draft assets in this scenario, and moving Dejounte Murray could help them try and get a high draft pick this season and draft a top-tier prospect.

Dejounte Murray is putting up solid numbers this year, averaging 19.2 PPG, 8.4 RPG, and 9.1 APG. He could guard the best perimeter player on the opposing team, while also running the offense for the team. He would take some scoring and playmaking load off of Brandon Ingram, and he could be a solid third option once Zion Williamson returns.

7. Myles Turner To Dallas Mavericks

Myles Turner

Dallas Mavericks Receive: Myles Turner

Indiana Pacers Receive: Dwight Powell, Jalen Brunson, 2024 first-round pick

The Dallas Mavericks have actually been a solid defensive team this season, and even Luka Doncic has improved on defense. Acquiring Myles Turner would help them add yet another defensively stout player to their roster, and his sharpshooting would fit well next to Luka Doncic.

In this scenario, the Indiana Pacers would get a promising young guard in Jalen Brunson as the centerpiece of this trade. Brunson is currently averaging 15.8 PPG, 3.8 RPG, and 5.6 APG, and he could definitely be solid next to Malcolm Brogdon. Dwight Powell would be a solid backup big man, and he provides energy and rebounding off the bench. The first-round pick would help the Indiana Pacers rebuild.

As mentioned, Myles Turner would fit well in Jason Kidd's defense-first system. He is one of the best rim protectors in the league and having him and Kristaps Porzingis would deter opponents from attacking the rim. Turner's shooting would work really well with Luka Doncic's playmaking, and he is actually finishing really well this season (75% from the restricted area). Myles Turner would give the Mavericks more talent overall, and this trade could definitely help them get better.

6. John Wall To Los Angeles Clippers

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Los Angeles Clippers Receive: John Wall

Houston Rockets Receive: Eric Bledsoe, Serge Ibaka, Marcus Morris

We first mentioned this John Wall trade scenario in a previous article. Essentially, this trade would allow the Los Angeles Clippers to get a solid point guard to be the third option behind Kawhi Leonard and Paul George while allowing the Houston Rockets to get some sort of return for John Wall.

The Houston Rockets would get Serge Ibaka in this deal, who will be a free agent at the end of the season. Eric Bledsoe's contract is only partially guaranteed for the 2022-2023 season and will expire at the end of that season. Trading for those two players could help the Rockets save some money. They would also get Marcus Morris, who is signed through the 2023-2024 season, and could potentially become a nice trade chip down the line, as he is a really good veteran player.

The Los Angeles Clippers would obviously get John Wall in this scenario. John Wall averaged 20.6 PPG, 3.2 RPG, and 6.9 APG last season. However, he was very inefficient, only shooting 40.4% from the field and 31.7% from beyond the arc. On the Los Angeles Clippers, he would have less pressure to score, which reduces those concerns, and could focus on playmaking for others. This trade definitely has upside for both teams.

5. Christian Wood To Golden State Warriors

Christian Wood

Golden State Warriors Receive: Christian Wood

Houston Rockets Receive: James Wiseman, Kevon Looney, 2027 first-round pick (GSW)

Christian Wood to the Golden State Warriors is a move that we've covered previously. Essentially, this would be the Golden State Warriors' win-now move, for a big man who is known as one of the best stretch bigs in the league. 

The Houston Rockets would get a great prospect in James Wiseman in this trade scenario. Wiseman is extremely athletic, has some shooting touch, and can handle the ball relatively well for a center. If developed right, he has the tools to be a very good player in this league. The Houston Rockets would also acquire a solid defensive veteran in Kevon Looney and some draft compensation in this deal. This trade would help Christian Wood go to a contender while giving the Rockets a prospect that matches up with their timeline.

Christian Wood would be a player that fits the Golden State Warriors system like a glove. He is a fantastic perimeter shooter for a big man, currently shooting 36.6% from beyond the arc on 4.8 attempts a game. He would be a much better starting option at center for the Warriors than anyone they can field right now, and his athleticism and rebounding would help the Warriors a lot. Overall, Christian Wood is an impact player that could make a difference in a tough playoff series, and the Warriors should definitely look into getting him if he's available. 

4. Domantas Sabonis To Boston Celtics

Domantas Sabonis

Boston Celtics Receive: Domantas Sabonis

Indiana Pacers Receive: Marcus Smart, Robert Williams, 2022 first-round pick (BOS), 2024 first-round pick (BOS)

The Boston Celtics have two young wings in Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown. Ideally, they would add a player who can provide an immediate impact and help the team improve, without giving up either of the two. Domantas Sabonis would allow them the opportunity to do just that. This trade package was previously reported by us in a list of potential good targets for the Boston Celtics.

The Indiana Pacers are likely to go through a retool/rebuild, and this package would give them some assets to do that. Marcus Smart is a solid defensive guard, who could potentially be traded later on to a contender, as he would be a solid contributor on any team. Robert Williams is a fantastic defensive center, who could still improve further on the offensive end. This trade would get the Indiana Pacers an elite young prospect for their All-Star, as well as draft compensation.

Domantas Sabonis would thrive next to Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum, as he is a playmaker that can help his teammates get easy baskets. He would be able to be the third option on the Boston Celtics scoring-wise, and his playmaking would allow both Brown and Tatum to focus on scoring. He is also a fantastic rebounder and finisher at the rim. Overall, Domantas Sabonis would be able to be a connector piece as a point forward, and he is a good fit with the other stars on the roster.

3. Jerami Grant To Chicago Bulls

Credit: USA Today

Credit: USA Today

Chicago Bulls Receive: Jerami Grant

Detroit Pistons Receive: Patrick Williams, Derrick Jones Jr, 2021 first-round pick (POR)

The Chicago Bulls became a contender this season, and they are currently 30-17 and the 2nd seed in the Eastern Conference. A win-now move could increase their chances of winning the championship, and Jerami Grant seems like the perfect target.

It was previously reported that the Chicago Bulls would need to send out this exact trade package to acquire Jerami Grant from the Detroit Pistons. Patrick Williams would be a solid young wing to develop alongside their young core. He would definitely get more offensive opportunities compared to his time in Chicago, and he is already a fantastic perimeter defender. Derrick Jones is an expiring contract at the end of this season. The draft pick from the Trail Blazers is top-14 protected, and since the Trail Blazers are currently a lottery team, it would likely defer to 2023. The Detroit Pistons would essentially be getting a prospect and a pick to help their rebuild, while also saving some money.

Jerami Grant is a two-way wing that could be perfect in Chicago as the 3rd option behind Zach LaVine and DeMar DeRozan. He would take some scoring burden off of Nikola Vucevic, and hold down the fort on defense until Lonzo Ball and Alex Caruso return from their injuries. Jerami Grant would definitely be a difference-maker for the Chicago Bulls, and perhaps we'll see them explore avenues to get him in the future.

2. Buddy Hield To Los Angeles Lakers

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Los Angeles Lakers Receive: Buddy Hield

Sacramento Kings Receive: Talen Horton-Tucker, Kendrick Nunn, DeAndre Jordan, Kent Bazemore

The Los Angeles Lakers have been extremely inconsistent this season, but they do have a pretty good big 3. We know that LeBron James and Anthony Davis are a duo that is capable of winning a championship: they just need some solid players around them. Buddy Hield would be able to be an immediate contributor to the team.

The Sacramento Kings would receive a Talen Horton-Tucker-centered package in this deal. They notably run a three-guard system currently, and Horton-Tucker would likely be taking Hield's place as a 6th man. There is however potential for him to get more minutes if someone like De'Aaron Fox gets moved. The contracts of Kendrick Nunn, DeAndre Jordan, and Kent Bazemore would be salary fillers in this scenario, and their contracts expire this year unless Nunn decides to pick up his $5,250,000 million player option. This trade would allow Buddy Hield to go to a playoff team while getting the Kings a solid prospect in return.

Buddy Hield would immediately help the Los Angeles Lakers with his elite shooting. He would bring defenders out to the perimeter, allowing Russell Westbrook and LeBron James to live at the rim. He would also thrive off of easy baskets from Westbrook and James. Essentially, Buddy Hield would be a fantastic fit on the Los Angeles Lakers, and would greatly help them on the offensive end. 

1. Ben Simmons To Atlanta Hawks

Ben Simmons

Atlanta Hawks Receive: Ben Simmons

Philadelphia 76ers Receive: John Collins, Bogdan Bogdanovic, 2022 first-round pick (ATL)

Ben Simmons has been linked with the Atlanta Hawks in reports previously. It is easy to see why the Atlanta Hawks would be interested in Simmons, as they lack a legitimate co-star for Trae Young.

On the 76ers' end, this trade would allow them to put a promising young forward in John Collins next to Joel Embiid. Collins is currently averaging 16.8 PPG, 7.9 RPG, and 2.0 APG this season while shooting 41.4% from beyond the arc. His shooting would let him thrive next to Joel Embiid, and perhaps he could end up being successful in a bigger offensive role. Bogdan Bogdanovic would provide some spacing and supplementary shot creation next to Joel Embiid, and he would be a solid option at either the SG or SF for spacing purposes. The first-round pick would give the 76ers some assets for the future, perhaps to be used in a future trade.

Ben Simmons would be a solid fit on the Atlanta Hawks. He would be a much better fit with Trae Young, and his playmaking would allow Young to play more off-ball at times, leading to easier scoring opportunities. Ben Simmons would also help the team on the defensive end, and he was one of the candidates for the DPOY award during the 2020-21 season. This move would get the 76ers a solid package for their star, while also getting the Hawks a star to put next to Trae Young. This seems like a win-win move for both teams.