The NBA trade deadline is Thursday, which always means drama and entertainment. It continues to be fascinating for a number of reasons.
One of them, which can only be interesting (and slightly amusing) to me, is the fact that most possible transactions never occur before the cut-off time or hours before the cut-off time. I understand that teams are probably using all of their available time to leverage or get the most out of their trade. But you couldn’t have concluded these agreements at any other time during the previous four months?
On a more serious note, THE A fascinating part of this time of year is how players react to the noise around them. Players familiar with the noise, like Atlanta’s John Collins and Indiana’s Myles Turner, may become immune to it over time. But in this next section, I want to focus on a few guys who are new to this mid-season trade delay stuff.
Trade Deadline Beginners
Chris Paul – Phoenix Suns
According Athleticismof Shams Charania, the Suns offered Chris Paul to the Brooklyn Nets before Joe Tsai and co. accepted the Dallas Mavericks contract for Kyrie Irving. And this isn’t the first time Paul, a future Hall of Fame point guard, has been involved in trade talks. He’s been traded four times in his NBA career, but that’s usually in his time and in the offseason — think New Orleans to Los Angeles and Los Angeles to Houston.
Who knows what knowledge of the proposed deal CP3 had this time around, but I’m really curious to see how this week is going for him as he (and the Suns) find his groove on his return from injury. at the hip. Charania mentions that Phoenix should still “be incredibly active” this week while also mentioning Paul’s uncertain future with the team. Is Phoenix still pursuing trades with him attached? Does all this change the dynamics of the locker room? We will see.
Fred VanVleet – Toronto Raptors
However, participating in business discussions is not always a bad thing. Some players may use it as fuel to play better and increase their value before a move is made. Whether or not that was the motivating factor behind Fred VanVleet’s recent string of games is unknown, but his return to form over the past few weeks has been strong enough for us all to notice. Games 1-36 of his season were nothing to write home about, as VanVleet’s individual struggles coincided with Toronto’s. His last 10 games, however, have resembled those of his 2021-22 All-Star season. Since mid-January, VanVleet is averaging 26.0 points, 7.5 assists, 5.2 rebounds and 1.6 steals on 45.6/39.8/94.0 shooting ranges.
Now that VanVleet seems to have left behind the horrific shootout that plagued him throughout the first half of the season, more questions could have arisen than before. Are the Raptors now in a position where they could reasonably ask for more in potential trade packages? Is Toronto more motivated to keep and pay VanVleet this offseason instead of trading him now?
It doesn’t seem like there’s necessarily a right or wrong answer for any of the questions, but we’ll have some answers by the end of Thursday.
Movement of odds and timing of your bets
I think it’s safe to assume that we’re all expecting at least some movement this week across the league, and the movement I’m referring to isn’t just for completed trades. Rumors alone have moved some odds in sports betting, such as when the idea of Irving potentially being traded to the Lakers last week sent Los Angeles’ title odds up, then down after the trade. from Irving to Dallas. Of course, the completion of that trade has now boosted the Mavericks’ title odds from +2500 (before the trade) to +1400 (after the trade), with the pairing of Luka Dončić and Irving appearing to attract bettors.
But the above scenarios – both the assumed trade and the actual trade – lead to the most important point: betting is all about timing. Before the deadline ends, here are some teams with futures you should consider betting on.
New Orleans Pelicans
It’s not too late in the season for the Pelicans to catch up and catch up with the Memphis Grizzlies in the hunt for the Southwest Division title. Still, given how little time is left before the end of the regular season, I wouldn’t recommend betting big bucks for that to happen. However, New Orleans will not run against a time limit once the playoffs begin. And if the Pels were healthy at the time, their roster would be good enough to beat anyone in the West.
We’re not too far off from the Pelicans who had a run all last season to clinch a playoff berth and give the No. 1 seed a run for his money. And that was without the services of Zion Williamson. They entered this season with momentum and high expectations. They will be even more dangerous after Williamson returns from his last injury to build up at least a bit more cohesion with the recently returned Brandon Ingram. Ingram has only played in 20 of New Orleans’ 55 games so far.
The Pels could swing big at the deadline (most would suggest trying to trade for Brooklyn’s Kevin Durant). But even a little move or two around the fringes would help — something that rivals last season’s acquisition of Larry Nance Jr., which allowed coach Willie Green to unlock smaller units that present problems for the players. other teams on both sides of the pitch. Whatever they end up doing, I think they’ll be one of the last teams out west assuming health isn’t an issue, and take advantage of their +1200 odds to win the conference sounds like a good idea.
Let’s quickly destroy the East.
The Boston Celtics and Milwaukee Bucks are undeniably the crème de la crème of the East, whether you base that claim on those teams’ retained talent from their recent Eastern Conference championships (and Milwaukee’s NBA championship ) or by literally glancing at the current standings. . Philadelphia and Cleveland are next level, with the Sixers knocking on that next level.
After that, there is arguably no other team close to these four. Brooklyn is still an unknown until we find out what their roster looks like after Thursday, and Miami doesn’t seem capable of making it back to the conference finals as it’s currently constructed.
So if you consider the Cavs to be one of the top 4 teams in the Eastern Conference, wouldn’t it make sense to bet on their +900 odds to get out of the East and make it to the finals of the NBA?
They’re not peaking right now or having the same success they had at the start of this season with an 8-1 record. But we know the addition of Donovan Mitchell makes the Cavaliers a better team than last season, even before injuries hit them. They are yet to lose to Boston (2-0) or Philadelphia (1-0) this season, although Milwaukee has presented some issues for Cleveland (1-2).
But given how the Cavs have fared against the teams most likely to stand in the way of a conference championship, a trade deadline to cement the small starting forward spot could move the needle. Cleveland is running out of assets thanks to Mitchell’s trade, so they’ll need to get creative to make some potentially impactful moves this week. I’d take a chance, though, given their odds of 9 to 1.
Will there be another move as big as Kyrie to Dallas?
The Brooklyn-Dallas exchange was important for several reasons. For one, it officially ends the Nets’ huge bet in the summer of 2019 before going even further with the acquisition of James Harden from the Houston Rockets. But also important for the Dallas Mavericks to finally land Dončić another proven elite running mate. Debates can be had on Irving’s actual superstar status at this point in his career, given how everything has gone since leaving Cleveland. Still, his play this season has resembled that of an All-NBA player and should fit right in with the way the Mavericks like to operate on offense.
Does any trade at This delay will be as noisy as Irving’s move to Dallas? As I mentioned earlier, the Chris Paul and Fred VanVleet stuff will be intriguing to watch, and maybe Toronto has a fire sale. And Kevin Durant? Is Chicago hanging on to Zach LaVine? There’s plenty of news to pay attention to over the next 48 hours, so be sure to turn on those tweet notifications.
(Photo by Kyrie Irving: Dustin Satloff/Getty Images)