In the past few months, rumors have been swirling around Buddy Hield and his future with the Sacramento Kings. Since he was demoted to the bench, reports have circulated about Hield’s unhappiness with the Kings. If he remains displeased with his role until the 2020 NBA offseason, there’s a growing belief around the league that Hield might demand a trade from the Kings.
Once he becomes officially available on the trade market, several NBA teams in dire need of a backcourt boost are expected to express a strong interest in acquiring Hield from the Kings, including the Denver Nuggets. In his recent article, Greg Swartz of Bleacher Report included the Hield-to-Nuggets deal on the list of most realistic trades that could happen in the 2020 offseason.
In the proposed trade deal by Bleacher Report, the Nuggets would be sending a trade package including Gary Harris, Keita Bates-Diop, and the Houston Rockets’ 2020 first-round pick to the Kings in exchange for Hield. If the trade becomes a reality, it would help both NBA teams improve their rosters.
As Swartz noted, the Kings would be killing two birds with one stone in the potential deal with the Nuggets. Aside from getting rid of a disgruntled player, they would also be acquiring two young and promising talents that still fit their rebuilding plan in Harris and Bates-Diop and a future first-round pick.
“With this deal, the Kings would still get a starting-level shooting guard in Harris, a 25-year-old out of Michigan State who was a first-round pick in 2014. While he’s regressed in recent years while overshadowed by Jamal Murray and Nikola Jokic in Denver, he’s a good defender who’s averaged 17.5 points per game and shot 42.0 percent from three in previous seasons. Bates-Diop is 24 and can play either forward position, while the Rockets’ first-rounder is currently slated at No. 21 overall in the 2020 draft.”
Meanwhile, for the Nuggets, the potential deal would undeniably give them an upgrade at the shooting guard position. Hield might have shown a decline with his statistics in the 2019-20 season where he is averaging 19.8 points, 4.8 rebounds, and 3.1 assists while shooting 42.9 percent from the field and 39.5 percent from beyond the arc. However, once he’s given the opportunity to return to the starting lineup under Nuggets Head Coach Michael Malone, Hield has a strong chance of regaining his rhythm and improving his consistency.
Swartz believes that trading for Hield would be a “win-now move” for the Nuggets. Adding Hield to the core of Nikola Jokic, Jamal Murray, and Michael Porter Jr. would give the Nuggets a better chance of fully dominating the Western Conference and winning the NBA championship title in the 2020-21 season.