There has been many possible trade ideas floating about for the Oklahoma City Thunder. Why not start a few more? ESPN's Chad Ford had been discussing the top 10 names that may be moved by the trade deadline. Names like Amare Stoudemire, Hasheem Thabeet, Andre Iguodala, and Shane Battier may be available soon. Is anyone interested?
Let's see what Mr. Ford says...
Amare Stoudemire, F, Suns
Stoudemire made our list last week, but just barely. The thinking was that, given the Suns' recent success, the team would likely hold on to him, see how far it could get in the playoffs, and then, this summer, try to sign him or try to do a sign-and-trade.
But the feedback I've received in the last week has caused me to recalibrate the chances of Stoudemire getting traded. The Suns are in a slump (losers of 15 of their last 26), and the word out of Phoenix is that there has been some tension in the locker room involving Stoudemire.
Stoudemire won't be easy to trade. He can become an unrestricted free agent this summer, and any team that trades for him is going to want some sort of guarantee that he'll sign an extension or a new contract this summer. If Stoudemire's willing to give it, and a team is willing to give up a substantial asset for him, the Suns may very well pull the trigger.
I see this essentially the same as the Bosh trade rumor/fantasies that has been floating around. The Thunder could easily toss some expiring contracts, cheap rookie assets, and draft picks at Phoenix and pick up Amare Stoudemire this year. The question remains, will Amare stay around for very long?
Andre Iguodala, G/F, Sixers
For the past several weeks, I've dismissed the idea that the 76ers, even if they are desperate to reduce payroll, would give away Iguodala for the expiring contract of Tracy McGrady. But after talking with a number of people close to the situation, I think it's plausible.
A deal of Iguodala and Samuel Dalembert for McGrady would work under terms of the collective bargaining agreement. While it would eat up any cap space the Rockets might have this summer, if Iguodala is the prize, who cares?
So what's the holdup? A couple of things. From Houston's point of view, Dalembert's 15 percent trade kicker would be a bitter pill. And from Philadelphia's perspective, it's important to get back an asset for a building block like Iguodala. While the Sixers love the idea of getting his long-term salary and Dalembert's off the books, they want something in return. The Rockets could offer Trevor Ariza or Aaron Brooks to sweeten the deal, but it sounds as though talks haven't gotten that far yet.
OKC could easily walk into this trade scenario. The Thunder could toss a 1st round pick to the 76ers to sweeten the deal. Imagine this... The 76ers receive T-Mac, Chase Budinger, and a 1st round pick from OKC. The Rockets receive Andre Iguodala, Nenad Krstic, Etan Thomas, and D.J. White. Then Thunder could take Samuel Dalembert and Carl Landry. Of course this deal could go down without a White/Landry swap, but I think Presti is shrewd enough to make this happen. The 76ers would get a great young player, an All Star, and an additional 1st round pick. The Rockets would get a temporary front court for this season, an expiring contract in Thomas, and a young star with Iggy. The Thunder would clear up some roster space, and add some toughness to it front court.
Hasheem Thabeet, C, Grizzlies
Gay isn't the only player the Grizzlies would move for the right price. Thabeet is off to a slow start in his rookie season in Memphis and doesn't fit into the team's current plans. Still, he was the No. 2 pick in the draft, and he has value in the league.
If a team is willing to give up a veteran defensive presence, I think he could be had.
This could be an easy pick up. I know the Thunder heavily scouted Hasheem before last year's draft. I wonder if they are still interested.
Shane Battier, F, Rockets
Battier is the heart and soul of Morey's Rockets. Remember, Houston traded lottery pick Rudy Gay for him in 2005, shortly after Morey's arrival, and has never looked back. While Gay has been the more electric prospect, Battier has done what Battier does: all the little things that translate into chemistry and wins. I don't think any team in the league values him the way Morey does.
That said, there have been rumblings that Battier is available for the right price. The Rockets are after a big man, and, well, isn't just about anyone available for the right price? I don't see a team making an offer that knocks Morey's socks off, but you never know.
Battier seems like a Presti guy if I've ever seen one. Shane is a classy veteran that could add some leadership and 3pt shooting. I know OKC is looking for some front court support as well, but maybe Presti could make an offer Morey can't refuse.
To read Chad Ford's full ESPN Insider article click HERE .