The 2017-18 NBA season is just under a couple of weeks old, but a number of names, including Eric Bledsoe, Tyson Chandler, and Nikola Mirotic, are already being floated around as candidates to be in different uniforms in various trade rumors.
The most prominent NBA player who will likely be traded in the near future is Phoenix Suns starting point guard Eric Bledsoe. Bledsoe, 27, made a lot of noise recently after tweeting, “I don’t want to be here” on Sunday. Many, including the Suns organization, interpreted the tweet as a plea for Bledsoe to play for another team. Suns general manager Ryan McDonough answered by telling reporters that Bledsoe “won’t be with us going forward.”
Since then, Bledsoe has been mentioned in different trade rumors. The latest rumor, according to Bleacher Report, is that Bledsoe is being offered to the Milwaukee Bucks for Malcolm Brogdon. If the Bucks trade for Bledsoe, they will have to let go of Brogdon and a few other pieces to make the salaries work. The Bucks, however, are reluctant to part with its young point guard.
Brogdon is the reigning NBA Rookie of the Year and is having a superb start to the season. The 24-year-old Brogdon is averaging 16 points and four assists in four games. Bledsoe, meanwhile, was also averaging close to 16 points to go with three assists in three games before being shelved.
The Bledsoe trade rumor to the New York Knicks is supposedly dead for now along with the one sending Mini-LeBron to Cleveland to play with the real deal.
According to Yahoo Sports, the Knicks will not trade for Bledsoe, especially if it means parting with the team’s top pick from the last NBA draft – Frank Ntilikina. The Knicks are also hesitant to trade Willy Hernangomez or a draft pick for Bledsoe.
The Cavaliers’ interest in Bledsoe has also died down. After failing to get Bledsoe for Kyrie Irving, who went to Boston, the Cavs seem to be no longer in pursuit of Bledsoe. LeBron James, a close friend of Bledsoe, appears to be hinting that he wants him on his side.
LeBron said in an interview with Joe Vardon of Cleveland.com that the Brooklyn pick, which the Cavs got from the Irving deal, “might not even be that good.” James is rumored to be considering a move to Los Angeles and the Cavs are apparently looking for ways to keep him happy in Cleveland. A trade for Bledsoe, who has the same agent as James, may go a long way. For now, however, the Cavs are not taking the bait.
Aside from Bledsoe, the Suns are also looking to trade center Tyson Chandler. The 35-year-old veteran may find himself packing his bags as part of a Bledsoe deal, according to Marc Stein of ESPN. Chandler, who’s averaging a respectable seven points and 10 rebounds a game so far, has two years and $26.5 million left on his contract.
Despite the delicate situation with Bledsoe and possibly Chandler, it pales in comparison to the quandary the Chicago Bulls are facing right now. After the much-publicized brawl between teammates Nikola Mirotic and Bobbi Portis, the former is now asking the Bulls to trade him if the latter stays. Mirotic, who suffered a concussion and facial fractures, is willing to waive his no-trade clause just to avoid Portis.
Trade rumors for both Mirotic and Portis have yet to surface, which is quite understandable since teams may not be too excited to add any of the two. Mirotic will be out for four to six weeks, so he won’t be able to help anyone real soon. Plus, no one knows how the incident and the injury will affect his play going forward. As for Portis, his reputation is now damaged and few teams would want to roll the dice on him. Mirotic also got some bad rep after it was revealed that Nikola was the aggressor in the incident.
[Featured Image by Jeffrey Phelps/AP Images]