The 2022 NBA trade deadline is just a couple of days away, so teams are getting ready for the final negotiations ahead. While all eyes are on the Ben Simmons situation, whether or not James Harden is involved, it still seems as if a Simmons deal is unlikely. There are a number of other notable names on the trade market, and Bleacher Report’s Jake Fischer says Portland Trail Blazers star CJ McCollum is now the biggest star expected to be dealt ahead of Thursday’s deadline.
The New Orleans Pelicans are reportedly the most likely destination for McCollum, but the New York Knicks and Atlanta Hawks are also involved in conversations. Fischer highlights a potential Pelicans offer:
The framework most often mentioned by league personnel in New Orleans’ pursuit of McCollum has centered around Josh Hart and Tomas Satoransky, while the Pelicans have made both former first-round picks Jaxson Hayes and Nickeil Alexander-Walker available in trade conversations around the league. Hart’s unique deal structure is entirely non-guaranteed for next season. Satoransky is on an expiring contract. The Pelicans are also plush with a surplus of future first-round picks stemming from their Anthony Davis and Jrue Holiday blockbusters.
The Blazers already made one big trade by shipping Norman Powell and Robert Covington to the Los Angeles Clippers for a questionable return, so it will be interesting to see what kind of trade package they wind up getting for McCollum if there is a deal.
Elsewhere around the NBA, Fischer reports the Indiana Pacers are still asking for at least two first-round picks for Myles Turner and an even larger package for Domantas Sabonis after shipping Caris LeVert to the Cleveland Cavaliers. It’s unclear if any suitor will pay up for either of those players. The Sacramento Kings are interested in both guys, with De’Aaron Fox’s name coming up “in some capacity,” per Fischer, but he also notes it’s unclear if there was any progress made in discussions.
Another popular player on the trade block has been Detroit Pistons star Jerami Grant, but there are signs that Grant may be staying put. The Pistons are reportedly asking for multiple first-round picks, and Grant’s strong relationship with general manager Troy Weaver could play a role in him sticking around.
This is all to say that there’s a lot of smoke around a McCollum trade, with major question marks on these other big names as the 2022 NBA trade deadline draws closer.