The NBA trade deadline is only days away and the Golden State Warriors have suddenly popped out as one of the rumored teams who could make a move before then. One of the latest speculations about the squad suggests a possible deal with the New Orleans Pelicans for superstar center Anthony Davis.
Davis, 24, has been mentioned in a lot of trade rumors this season. With the Pelicans (27-23) currently settled for the seventh place in the West, these rumors have gone on and off, similar to the team’s inconsistencies since the beginning of the 2017-2018 season.
After the season-ending Achilles injury suffered by teammate DeMarcus Cousins, the second half of New Orleans’ dreaded two towers, speculations of a potential Davis trade have just become louder.
Bleacher Report’s Sean Highkin said that with Cousins’ future with the team now clouded in doubt, the Pelicans would have to “prove they can build a contender around him (Davis)” to make the five-time NBA All-Star stay. Davis can become an unrestricted free agent in the summer of 2020, should he exercise his player option, which means New Orleans has until then to build a contending team around the former All-Star Game MVP.
Highkin added that the Pelicans would have to decide whether to trade Davis and start from scratch to do a full rebuild or just “wait out his free agency and risk losing him for nothing.”
Based on his recent interviews, Davis is willing to stick with the Pelicans for the duration of his career, but he could still have a change of heart if the club will not be able to “build a contender around him,” Highkin said.
Several teams are linked to Davis at the moment, including the Los Angeles Lakers, Boston Celtics, San Antonio Spurs, Chicago Bulls, and the defending champion Warriors.
Golden State (40-11) is still on top with the best record in the league and many analysts believe that they are set to win their second straight NBA title (third in the last four years) this June. While one may think that it makes no sense for them to alter their lineup, FanSided’s Tre LyDay suggested that the team could still make themselves stronger by acquiring Davis.
LyDay proposed a trade scenario that would send Davis to the Warriors in exchange for Draymond Green, Nick Young, Patrick McCaw, and two future first-round draft picks.
Acquiring Green would be considered as an ideal starting point for the Pelicans’ full rebuild, should they indeed decide to go that route. LyDay said that the six-year veteran is “the most versatile player in the NBA” today, and some basketball pundits believe that he is the glue that makes the Warriors blend well and stick together.
However, it remains to be seen whether the Warriors would ever be prepared to give up Green and tear apart their core that won multiple NBA championships for a chance to acquire another top-five player.