The NBA offseason is fast approaching, and there have been rumors swirling around about the top players in the league. This year's playoffs opened a lot of eyes to the quality of teams around the league and improvements are needed in both conferences. The first major move made this offseason was the deal sending Kemba Walker (plus a first-round pick in the 2021 NBA Draft) to the Oklahoma City Thunder for Al Horford and Moses Brown.
There is a lot of talent around the league right now, and it is expected that at least 20 more players will be moved this season. While it would be unlikely that every single one of these players is moved at once, it wouldn't be surprising considering the expectations of some of the league's top teams. Here are the 20 NBA players that will most likely be traded this offseason.
Kyle Kuzma is the most likely player on the Los Angeles Lakers to be traded because he has been far too inconsistent for a championship contender. LeBron James will be 37 next season and the Lakers need to make sure all the pieces fit to maximize his remaining years and so far, Kuzma isn't the answer. He has plenty of time to become the star he is capable of becoming so rebuilding teams like the Raptors (Kyle Lowry) and Spurs (DeMar DeRozan) could engage in a blockbuster sign and trade to give the Lakers their third star.
Possible Destinations: Toronto Raptors, San Antonio Spurs
Andrew Wiggins still hasn't become the star we expected
he would become, but he is a solid two-way player who can score and play strong perimeter defense. In 71 games for the Golden State Warriors, Wiggins averaged 18.6 PPG and 4.9 RPG while shooting 38.0% from three. At the very least, Wiggins can start on most teams because his athleticism makes him very versatile. Expect teams such as the Bulls and Knicks to offer first-round picks for an upgrade at the wing positions.
Possible Destinations: Chicago Bulls, New York Knicks
The Miami Heat were a disappointment this year because all their players did not repeat their stellar play as they did last year. Instead, the Heat barely put up a fight in the first round of the playoffs. Kendrick Nunn didn't have much of an impact, although he is 25 years old and is capable of starting on most teams. Nunn averaged 14.6 PPG and 3.2 RPG and can provide instant offense when he's in rhythm. The Knicks might grab him for some extra offense or if the Pelicans eventually trade Lonzo Ball, Nunn could be a replacement.
Possible Destinations: New York Knicks, New Orleans Pelicans
Kevin Love basically said his goodbye to Cleveland when he gave up during a game against the Toronto Raptors. Love simply doesn't fit on a rebuilding team, and the veteran needs a change of scenery to compete for a championship and enjoy playing basketball again. Love had his worst season averaging 12.2 PPG and 7.4 RPG, but his championship experience will be the biggest reason teams will be after his services this offseason. Teams such as the Spurs and Thunder have cap space for Love, so they can take on his salary as long as a young player and picks are involved.
Possible Destinations: San Antonio Spurs, Oklahoma City Thunder
The Pelicans fired Stan Van Gundy after a putrid season where Eric Bledsoe started in the backcourt alongside Lonzo Ball. Bledsoe averaged 12.2 PPG and 3.8 APG for the Pelicans, but he isn't the answer long-term. He is approaching 32 years old and is probably suited as a defensive stopper for a title contender like the Clippers. For now, teams will ask about Bledsoe because New Orleans probably wouldn't mind hearing offers.
Possible Destinations: Los Angeles Clippers, Dallas Mavericks
The Pelicans have a dynamic duo in Zion Williamson and Brandon Ingram, so a pass-first point guard like Lonzo Ball would seemingly be a perfect addition to the team. But the Pelicans don't seem to believe in the oldest Ball enough to keep him long-term. The Chicago Bulls were after Lonzo for the longest time as their answer at the point, and a trio involving him with Zach LaVine and Nikola Vucevic could be interesting to see.
Possible Destination: Chicago Bulls
Harrison Barnes has quietly had a strong career since winning the NBA championship with the Golden State Warriors in 2015. He averaged 18.7 PPG through 2.5 years with Dallas, and 15.1 PPG with the Kings. Barnes is a perfect forward in today's NBA because he's strong, athletic, and can make threes. Teams needing size and depth on the wing such as the Grizzlies and Wizards will go after Barnes because he certainly can make an impact when he plays alongside superstar players.
Possible Destinations: Memphis Grizzlies, Washington Wizards
Eric Gordon was the 2017 Sixth Man of the Year and is one of the quickest fire starters in the NBA right now. Whether he starts or comes off the bench, Gordon has a solid three-point jumper and is powerful at attacking the rim. The swingman is also an above-average defender and has been a critical component of Houston's championship contention the past few years. But he is nearing 33 years old and needs a new team focused on winning rather than the rebuilding situation he's in with the Rockets. The Clippers need a 6th man after trading away Lou Williams this season, while the Bulls could use an instant offense player to help Zach LaVine and Nikola Vucevic.
Possible Destinations: Los Angeles Clippers, Chicago Bulls
Buddy Hield played 71 games for the Kings this season and nailed 39.1% of his threes. He is a perfect spot-up shooter in today's game and has the size to be a solid defender as well. For Sacramento, they need to build around De'Aaron Fox so most of the roster is expendable. Hield is only 2 years removed from averaging over 20 PPG so there will be teams such as the Knicks and Pistons needing shooters this offseason.
Possible Destinations: New York Knicks, Detroit Pistons
Lauri Markkanen has a ton of potential and he hasn't quite flourished in Chicago. Especially with the acquisition of All-Star Nikola Vucevic, the Bulls have little room to give Markkanen the appropriate playing time. Rather, expect the Bulls to move him to a team needing scoring and defense in the paint such as the Kings and Mavericks. If Sacramento don't believe in Marvin Bagley III, they could do a swap. More importantly, Dallas should put together a package for Markkanen because a solid partnership with Luka could be enough to get them out of the first round.
Possible Destinations: Sacramento Kings, Dallas Mavericks
Myles Turner has been in trade talks all year long because the Pacers already have Domantas Sabonis in the middle. Turner averaged 12.6 PPG, 6.5 RPG, and 3.4 BPG for the Pacers this year. As a big man who can stretch the floor (35.2% career 3-point), he is as versatile as it gets. The Los Angeles Lakers will likely need a replacement for the (expected) departing Andre Drummond and Montrezl Harrell, so Turner is the immediate fix. Otherwise, the Clippers and Mavericks can acquire Turner to greatly improve their defense in the middle.
Possible Destinations: Los Angeles Lakers, Los Angeles Clippers, Dallas Mavericks
Kristaps Porzingis had a very disappointing run this year, failing to make an impact alongside Luka Doncic in Dallas. For some reason, he looked lost and disinterested in playing for the Mavericks. As a result, it is expected that "The Unicorn'' will be moved this offseason because averaging 13.1 PPG and 5.4 RPG in the postseason won't cut it for Mark Cuban and the Mavericks. Teams such as the Celtics and Hornets could make a move because Porzingis can still play like an All-Star when motivated.
Possible Destinations: Boston Celtics, Charlotte Hornets
Jerami Grant was a contender for the Most Improved Player of the Year Award, and for good reason. The versatile wing player averaged 22.3 PPG and 4.6 RPG while playing like a number one option for most of the season in Detroit. While he won't be a number one option for a contending team, Grant is a very good player. Expect the Washington Wizards to try to acquire Grant while the Charlotte Hornets can continue building an intriguing team in the Eastern Conference.
Possible Destinations: Washington Wizards, Charlotte Hornets
Brogdon is a heck of a player, as he averaged 21.2 PPG and 5.9 APG while playing above-average defense on the perimeter. He has the right attitude to succeed in the NBA and can really stroke it from deep, nailing over 38% of his threes. The Dallas Mavericks could use Brogdon's playmaking and scoring to relieve pressure off Luka, while New Orleans need a third piece to help Zion Williamson and Brandon Ingram take the Pelicans to the playoffs.
Possible Destinations: Dallas Mavericks, New Orleans Pelicans
It was great to see John Wall back on an NBA court again, and he didn't disappoint. The speedy point guard was still explosive when he attacked the rim and was one of the bright spots for a rather poor Houston Rockets season. Wall averaged 20.6 PPG and 6.9 APG this year, and he clearly still has some star power left in the tank if he can keep healthy. The Lakers need a point guard because Dennis Schroder is likely out the door, while the Clippers could gamble on a potential John Wall buyout. Otherwise, Chicago could offer expiring contracts for a chance to build a solid Big Three with Vucevic and Zach LaVine in the lineup.
Possible Destinations: Chicago Bulls, Los Angeles Lakers, Los Angeles Clippers
Pascal Siakam had a very turbulent season with the Toronto Raptors, apparently beefing with head coach Nick Nurse to the point that "lines were crossed". Siakam averaged 21.4 PPG and 7.2 RPG this season and has been a pivotal player for the franchise over the past few years. But it might be time to move on and rebuild, with the Hornets and Bulls likely interested. The Hornets can build a Big Three with Siakam, Gordon Hayward, and LaMelo Ball while the Bulls can have their own by swapping Lauri Markkanen and other assets.
Possible Destinations: Charlotte Hornets, Chicago Bulls
Russell Westbrook had incredible individual statistics this year by posting a triple-double for the 4th time in his Hall of Fame career. Westbrook is undeniably one of the best point guards in the game, but his lack of team success is hurting his legacy. Nonetheless, Westbrook should be moved because he deserves a shot at proving he can win an NBA title. He is also a box office attraction, making him a perfect fit with Julius Randle in New York.
Possible Destination: New York Knicks
Lakers fans can dream of Collin Sexton nailing threes playing alongside LeBron James and Anthony Davis, but that will only happen if Cleveland believes in Kyle Kuzma, a first-round pick, and a second-round pick. Otherwise, Cleveland will have to settle for a deal involving first-rounders from Boston or New York. Sexton was one of the All-Star snubs this season after averaging 24.3 PPG, so his value is sky-high at the moment.
Possible Destinations: New York Knicks, Boston Celtics, Los Angeles Lakers
The best possible destination for CJ McCollum is in Dallas with Luka Doncic. McCollum is one of the best scorers in the NBA averaging 23.1 PPG for the Trail Blazers, but the team is struggling to make it out of the first round. Changes will be made this season and McCollum is the most valuable trade asset. The Mavericks need another star alongside Luka and can strike a deal this offseason, or Cleveland can make a deal for a new franchise star.
Possible Destinations: Dallas Mavericks, Cleveland Cavaliers
Karl-Anthony Towns is a superstar big man on a very poor team right now. Towns averaged 24.8 PPG and 10.6 RPG this season but could not lead the Timberwolves out of the lottery. Minnesota simply don't have the right coach, lineup, or rotation that suits the playing style of Towns. As a result, the big man should request a trade to the Golden State Warriors. Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson are untouchables, but the likes of Andrew Wiggins and Kelly Oubre Jr can be used along with first-round picks to form a superteam in Oakland.
Possible Destination: Golden State Warriors