There’s one thing certain besides death and taxes, the NBA trade deadline will be active. This year will be no different. It is one of the great things about the NBA. One player can really change the course of the team he gets traded to. The emphasis on individual star power allows team success to be manipulated more frequently. Golden State and Cleveland might only sniff around to see if they can add bench depth for their playoff runs. Other teams, however, might swing for the fences because they sense an opportunity that they cannot pass up. Houston is surprising everyone with their hot start and could look to add another star player at the deadline. Toronto might try to change things up to better contend with Cleveland than last year. Disappointing teams like Chicago might be sellers after their slow start to the season. Here are some players who might change uniforms this season:
5. Danilo Gallinari (Denver Nuggets)
Gallinari can light it up, there is no doubt about that. Last season, Danilo averaged 19.5 points per game for the Denver Nuggets. The problem has always been his health. Gallinari has only played in 112 games the last two seasons combined. Danilo can opt out of his final year and this will incentivize the Nuggets to move him for some younger pieces. Denver has already drafted very young and wants to develop their new generation of stars.
4. Greg Monroe (Milwaukee Bucks)
The reason Monroe is on this list is because of his ability to opt out of his final year. Greg Monroe surprised everyone by signing with the Bucks two summers ago. Monroe was their big free-agent splash and although his offensive numbers are what we expected, his defensive deficiencies might be enough to get him moved at the deadline. The Greek Freak is making this decision a lot easier.
3. Ricky Rubio (Minnesota Timberwolves)
Rookie Kris Dunn has made this move seem inevitable. Rubio came into the league with a lot of razzle and dazzle, but he never developed a jump shot. Minnesota had committed to him in previous years, however, this year seems to be the year they try to get some established stars to add with Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins.
2. Nerlens Noel (Philadelphia 76ers)
With the emergence of Joel Embiid, the 76ers should be much more inclined to trade Nerlens Noel at this deadline. Many people have been scratching their heads at the 76ers and their strategy of stockpiling big men. Philadelphia has Jahlil Okafor, Noel, and Embiid on their roster. Look for Philadelphia to move the least promising piece, he definitely isn’t shy about asking for his way out.
1. Rudy Gay (Sacramento Kings)
Rudy Gay will decline his player option for next season and will become an unrestricted free-agent. The Kings are stockpiling young talent and will look to move Gay with the right offer. There are plenty of teams that could use his services. Gay should be wearing a new uniform by the February deadline. Depending on the team, Gay could be joining his 4th NBA team.