Home Sports NBA trade deadline: Every big rumor and completed deal in 2021

NBA trade deadline: Every big rumor and completed deal in 2021

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NBA trade deadline: Every big rumor and completed deal in 2021


The 2021 NBA trade deadline is here, and a new playoff format has more teams than ever thinking they can break into the postseason picture. The league will host a play-in tournament for the final two seeds in each conference involving teams that finish the regular season at No. 7, No. 8, No. 9, and No. 10 in the East and the West. The trade deadline represents for the final chance for playoff hopefuls to bolster their roster ahead of the postseason.

There are several big names expected to be dealt on trade deadline day, including Kyle Lowry. The veteran point guard helped bring the Toronto Raptors a championship during his tremendous career with the club, but with Toronto falling out of the playoff picture, and Lowry on an expiring contract, a trade makes sense for both parties. The Lakers, 76ers, and Heat are the three biggest suitors.

Other notable names on the market this year include Kings forward Harrison Barnes, Magic forward Aaron Gordon, Pelicans guard Lonzo Ball, Rockets guard Victor Oladipo, and likely buyout candidates LaMarcus Aldridge and Andre Drummond.

We’ll be keeping track of every rumor and deal ahead of the the trade deadline at 3 p.m. ET on Thursday, March 25.

Nikola Vucevic traded to Bulls for Wendell Carter Jr., two first round picks

The Chicago Bulls have acquired All-Star center Nikola Vucevic in a blockbuster trade hours before the 2021 NBA Trade Deadline. Chicago is sending Wendell Carter Jr., Otto Porter Jr., and two first round picks to the Orlando Magic for Vucevic and Al-Farouq Aminu.

The Bulls will give up first round picks in 2021 and 2023 that are top-four protected in the deal.

Here’s analysis of the deal from Blog-a-Bull:

This is simply incredible. It also affirms that we truly have no knowledge of what Arturas Karnisovas and staff are about. We were led to believe, from what little public comment, reporting, and actual moves made so far, that they were GarPaxian in their low activity and ambition. This signals otherwise.

Vucevic, who is 30 but very much in his prime, fits in the role of Bulls starting center and a complementary offensive weapon to Zach LaVine. He has been very productive while flashing dynamic skills that should immediately improve the Bulls offense.

Evan Fournier traded to Boston Celtics

The Celtics used their trade exception from the Gordon Hayward deal to land Magic guard Evan Fournier for two second round picks.

Here’s analysis of the deal from CelticsBlog:

This would imply the use of Gordon Hayward’s traded player exception (TPE) to acquire Fournier if there’s no additional salary going out. This is huge because the Celtics have been noted as the frontrunner in Aaron Gordon trades. Reports surfaced earlier that Boston could trade Marcus Smart as part of a larger trade to include Fournier, but clearly, that’s not the real asking price.

Fournier is an expiring $17M contract (leaving $11M left in the TPE), which fits in nicely for Boston under the hard cap that was put in place by signing Tristan Thompson. It remains to be seen what will happen with Aaron Gordon, but the Celtics could still conceivably acquire him by sending out salary. We’ll update this story as more information comes out on the Fournier trade.

From the Magic’s perspective, via Orlando Pinstripe Post:

It was a near certainty he would be dealt, but his status as a potential rental certainly limited the return the Magic could get. A front office that has made a habit of undervaluing second-round picks now gets a pair of them back for Fournier.

Aaron Gordon traded to Denver Nuggets

Gordon is on his way to the Nuggets. Gary Harris, R.J. Hampton, and a first round pick to the Magic.

Here’s analysis of the deal from Denver Stiffs:

Denver officially lands one of the biggest fish in the free agency pond as Gordon was one of the most sought after players at this years deadline. The Boston Celtics, Houston Rockets, Minnesota Timberwolves, and Portland Trail Blazers all reportedly showed some interest in Gordon throughout the process, but none of them were able to match the Nuggets offer.

In Gordon, the Nuggets are getting a high flying forward who can slot into the starting lineup next to Jamal Murray, Will Barton, Michael Porter Jr., and Nikola Jokic. Gordon is averaging 14.6 points, 6.6 rebounds, and 4.2 assists per game through 25 games this season and has started every games he’s played in.

Trail Blazers acquire Norman Powell from Raptors for Gary Trent Jr.

Powell is having a breakout season and will be an unrestricted free agent in the summer. Trent Jr. will be a restricted free agent after this season.

Here’s analysis of the deal from Raptors HQ:

Powell was very publicly in trade talks over the last two weeks, as the Raptors spiralled to the brink of playoff contention with a nine-game losing streak. Multiple sources reported yesterday that the number of teams interested in Norm — averaging a career-high 43 percent from three and showcasing his ability to score during Toronto’s stretch without Fred VanVleet, OG Anunoby, and Pascal Siakam — was “in the teens.”

So, off he goes — and the haul isn’t bad. Gary Trent Jr., just 22-years-old, is a fun basketball player, and was one of the centrepieces of a feisty Blazers squad that earned their way into the bubble playoffs through the play in round. Now in his third season with Portland, Trent is averaging 15.0 points in 30.8 minutes per game, shooting 39.7 percent from three on 7.4 attempts per game. Obviously, he will slot nicely into Powell’s spot in the starting lineup, as the two enjoy much the same skillset. Contract-wise, Trent is on an expiring rookie deal, where the Raptors would have his bird rights in restricted free agency.

Bulls acquire Troy Brown, Mo Wagner from Wizards for Daniel Gafford, Chandler Hutchison

George Hill traded to 76ers for Tony Bradley, Terrance Ferguson

Ferguson will go to the Knicks as part of a three-team deal, while the Knicks are sending Iggy Brazdeikis to Philly.

Heat acquire Nemanja Bjelica from Kings for Moe Harkless, Chris Silva

NBA trade rumors 2021

Kyle Lowry, G, Toronto Raptors

The greatest Raptor of all-time turned 35 years old on trade deadline day and will be an unrestricted free agent this summer. He’s the biggest name on the trade block, and appears to have the Heat, Lakers, and 76ers seriously vying for him.

Harrison Barnes, F, Sacramento Kings

Barnes is under contract for two more seasons after this year at an average of $19 million. The 28-year-old forward is having one of the best seasons of his career with the Kings. Sacramento also believes Barnes could be a key piece in a playoff run for the team next season, and would need an enticing offer to trade him.

Lonzo Ball, G, New Orleans Pelicans

No. 2 overall pick in the 2017 NBA Draft could be on his way to his third team before the end of his rookie contract. The Pelicans have made Ball available before he heads into restricted free agency this summer, and the team could use getting rid of him as a way to shed extra salary from Steven Adams or Eric Bledsoe.

  • Chicago Bulls: Woj said the Bulls are the ‘team to watch’ with Ball. Chicago has its own restricted free agent-to-be in Lauri Markkanen that would make for a natural one-for-one swap. If Chicago includes Otto Porter Jr.’s expiring deal, it could take on the salary of Adams or Bledsoe. It would reportedly take more than just Markkanen for the Bulls to acquire Ball:

Victor Oladipo, G, Houston Rockets

One of the best players reportedly on the block right now is Oladipo. Under normal circumstances the Rockets wouldn’t move one of their most promising players, but the writing is on the wall that Oladipo might leave for free agency in the Summer.

Considering he was the largest piece for Houston in trading away James Harden the team will be loathed to move him, but it will be far worse if the Rockets lose Oladipo and get nothing in return.

  • Miami Heat: Oladipo has shown a long-term interest in joining Miami according to Adrian Wojnarowski. This means the Heat might submit a lowball offer, knowing they could just wait until the summer to sign him — but something is better than nothing.
  • New York Knicks: Another team Oladipo has shown interest in is the resurgent Knicks. There’s young talent that could be sent Houston’s way, and getting a 20 point per game scorer would elevate New York for a potential playoff push.
  • Portland Trail Blazers: The Blazers are sitting 6th in the west and are in dire need of another elite player to solidify their playoff spot. Their interest would be as a rental, but this could be a higher offer right now than most teams would make.

Likely NBA buyout candidates

LaMarcus Aldridge, C, San Antonio Spurs

Aldridge has been away from San Antonio and the two sides have agreed to part ways. If the Spurs can’t find a trade partner for the veteran big man, he will likely become one of the top targets on the buyout market.

  • Miami Heat: Miami is reportedly the front-runner to land Aldridge on the buyout market, per ESPN. Aldridge met with Pat Riley and the Heat in free agency before eventually picking the Spurs.
  • Brooklyn Nets: The Nets seem to be targeting every top veteran on the buyout market. Aldridge could provide bench minutes as a stretch five in Brooklyn.

Andre Drummond, C, Cleveland Cavaliers

Drummond has also been away from the Cavs as they’ve prioritized developing young big man Jarrett Allen. It’s more likely he’s on the buyout market than traded because of his expiring $28.7 million salary.

  • Los Angeles Lakers: The Lakers need front court depth with Anthony Davis banged up, and it’s possible Drummond could slide into a big role in time for the playoffs.
  • Brooklyn Nets: The Nets would like another answer for Joel Embiid in the playoffs, and Drummond has the size to battle the MVP candidate down low.

Completed NBA trades at the 2021 deadline

We’ll keep track of every completed trade below.

We’ll update this story as it develops.





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