Pump Fake: A Recap of The NBA Trade Deadline and Buyout Market

Coming into the trade deadline, rumors were circulating about some big names being on the market such as Kyle Lowry, Victor Oladipo, John Collins, and Andre Drummond. In a minor trade, the Pelicans traded JJ Reddick and Nico Meli to the Mavericks and received James Johnson, Wes Iwundu, and a second-round pick in return. JJ Reddick provides floor spacing for the Mavericks, something they desperately need. Two veteran players were traded for each other when the Clippers traded away Lou Williams, the reigning Sixth Man of the Year, for Rajon Rondo. Despite having two of the best wing players in the league, the Clippers have been in dire of a solid point guard. The acquisition of Rajon Rondo gives the Clippers championship pedigree and Rondo will be playing for a contender again. As for Lou Williams, he stated that he pondered retirement when he was traded to the Hawks, given that they are currently rebuilding around their young players. The biggest trade of the day came right at the deadline once the Miami Heat acquired Victor Oladipo from the Houston Rockets for Avery Bradley, Kelly Olynyk, and two first-round picks. Given that Oladipo is in the final year of his contract, the Rockets attempted to extend him, but he turned down the extension. Oladipo showed flashes of his pre-injury self, with the Rockets, averaging 20.8 points per game. The reigning Eastern Conference Champions will benefit from Oladipo’s fantastic defense and offensive fire-power, given that they are right in the mix for the 8th seed.

The buyout market began when the Detroit Pistons chose to buyout Blake Griffin and he signed with the Brooklyn Nets. Blake adds more star-power to that Brooklyn Nets team, who already has named such as Kevin Durant, James Harden, and Kyrie Irving. The Nets were not done after the acquisition of Blake Griffin because they then went out and obtain LaMarcus Aldridge after the Spurs bought him out. There are currently 41All-Star appearances between all of the Brooklyn players. The star-studded Brooklyn Nets lineup puts them as heavy favorites to win the NBA Championship, but their success hinges on whether or not their lineup can remain healthy and build chemistry with one another. On Sunday afternoon, the Lakers announced they were acquiring Andre Drummond, another big name from the buyout market. Drummond will join an injury-riddled Lakers team, as he adds depth to the Lakers front-court who currently relies on Harrell and Gasol to man the paint. This addition has the potential to go a long way in the Lakers repeating their championship run.


Email Ryan at rrm232@cornell.edu with any questions!