The NBA season has just passed its halfway point and the decisions made between now and the March 25 trade deadline will determine who separates themselves from the pack heading into the postseason. Do the Mavericks have enough to push for playoff security? Can the Bucks or Sixers compete with the Nets firepower? Do the Clippers have enough to make it out of the West? What about the Jazz? or the Nuggets? The trade deadline comes with so many questions, and here's the answer to who should buy at the deadline

NBA trade teams:

5. Milwaukee Bucks

For a team currently third in their conference, it may seem counterintuitive for them to be one of the hottest buyers in the NBA trade market. But, as is evident to anyone who's watched hoops the past few seasons, the Bucks need to build a roster capable of playing multiple styles and making a deep playoff run. The Bucks don't need another top-15 player as much as they need to fill very specific roles with very specific players.

Though DJ Augustin is a serviceable NBA backup, he's not the type of player that can will a team to playoff wins at this stage in his career. An upgrade to a proven leader of the second unit (like Patty Mills) can entirely change the dynamic of this team. The wish list should also include a versatile wing defender, a shot creator outside of Khris Middleton, and more shooters surrounding Giannis Antetokounmpo.

4. Dallas Mavericks

Dallas is nowhere close to the position they thought they'd be in coming into the NBA season. Sitting in the final true playoff spot in the West, changes will need to be made to Rick Carlisle's squad to escape the play-in tournament.

Larger questions of this roster's ceiling and player compatibility will probably have to wait for the NBA offseason, but fine-tuning an offense that features the generational talent of Luka Doncic is never a bad idea. GM Donnie Nelson should have one word listed about four times on his wishlist: shooters, shooters, shooters, and more shooters. Big shooters, small shooters, doesn't matter surround Luka and Kristaps Porzingis with as many floor-stretching options as possible.

Players like OG Anunoby, Jae Crowder, Robert Covington, and Danny Green should all be on Nelson's NBA radar.

3. Boston Celtics

Through the C's onto the list of underachieving NBA teams. With the most exciting, young wind duo in the league, hovering around .500 simply isn't good enough. The positive spin is that it's very clear the kind of players they need to turn their season around.

As far as I'm concerned, there are three untouchable NBA players on this roster: Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, and Marcus Smart. Everyone else should be on the table, in spite of their obvious talents (see: Kemba Walker). Buying at the deadline, given the trade assets at their disposal and the lingering Gordon Hayward trade exception, is the most straightforward path to contention.

In the best-case scenario, the Celtics find a way to acquire a two-way shot-creator alongside Marcus Smart and a versatile big man to complete a deadly NBA lineup that can match up with the best of them. The names in my head? Kyle Lowry at the guard spot and one of Thaddeus Young, Brook Lopez, or the heavily linked Nikola Vucevic.

2. Denver Nuggets

Simply put, Nikola Jokic is a cosmic object that every other player on the court orbits around. He's a top-five player in the NBA in his prime. With a roster this close to competing for a championship, all moves are on the table.

The Nuggets need to buy wisely in order to maximize the potential of this roster. With two all-world level shotmakers, complementary pieces with defensive repertoires. The same type of wing disruptors that the Bucks would covet. NBA role players such as Garrett Temple, Danny Green, or Matisse Thybulle should all be on GM Calvin Booth's list.

Or, scrap that and go for the best NBA player on the market: Bradley Beal. With the assets to make this trade happen, no price is too high to add one of the most explosive offensive players in the league.

1. Miami Heat

A subtle reminder that we lived in a world where Tyler Herro was the tipping point between James Harden being or not being a member of the Miami Heat. Now, the Eastern Conference representatives of yesteryear have to scramble to find a roster capable of returning to the NBA Finals.

The top option for Pat Riley's team should be a wing defender to replace the shockingly massive hole left by the departure of Jae Crowder. Moe Harkless was supposed to be that player and Precious Achiuwa can only do so much as an NBA rookie. Though trade rumors constantly link the Heat to all-star caliber players like Victor Oladipo and Kyle Lowry, more fundamentally sound buying decisions–one's that don't shake up the core of a Finals team–are just smarter.

What makes Miami the number one team that needs to buy is the simple moves they can make to change their fortunes. Andre Iguodala, Kelly Olynyk, Avery Bradley, and Harkless all have very easily flippable contracts, but if Miami wanted to make a splash they could via Goran Dragic's $18 million salaries. With so many movable pieces, buying at the deadlines to make incrementally positive changes can have a massive impact on where the Heat finish in the NBA end-of-season standings.