As the 2022-23 NBA season approaches, most of the rosters appear to be set entering the first games. However, that doesn’t mean teams aren’t looking to make moves as the season starts to play out. There have already been some big trades in the offseason and more are sure to follow up to the trade deadline. Here’s a look at the players most likely to be dealt during the upcoming season.
Buddy Hield and Myles Turner, Indiana Pacers
The Pacers are shipping out their veterans to fully embrace the rebuild. They’ve got young players behind Hield and Turner who could use the extended playing time. Both players are going to attract contenders, and Indiana wants draft picks or young pieces in return. It’ll be hard to find a spot for Turner but Hield should have plenty of suitors as a wing scorer.
Jakob Poeltl, San Antonio Spurs
The Spurs like Poeltl, but he might be able to boost a contender near the trade deadline. He’s also an expiring contract, which creates value for the acquiring party as well. San Antonio might hold onto him and negotiate an extension, although they have notoriously shed long-term salary over the last year. It’s more likely he gets dealt than extended.
Mike Conley and Jordan Clarkson, Utah Jazz
Conley and Clarkson are last holdouts in Utah. With the rest of that contending core gone, the Jazz have two more moves to make to complete the teardown. Clarkson will gain a lot of attention as a sixth man on a fairly light contract, while Conley has to show he can still be an elite player for a contender to bring him in at his price point.
Eric Gordon, Houston Rockets
The Rockets appear content to have a veteran presence like Gordon in the locker room, but does the guard feel the same way? He’s at the back end of his career and probably wants to play meaningful games in April, May and June. Houston isn’t getting there for at least a couple seasons. Look for him to be in the mix for teams who strike out on Hield and Clarkson.
Jae Crowder, Phoenix Suns
The Suns have already sent Crowder home and are seeking a trade partner. The Hawks are reportedly in conversations to land the veteran forward, who appears to be fed up with the situation in Phoenix. Teams typically don’t give up much for malcontents but Crowder does have some valuable playoff experience and fills a need as a perimeter defender.
More names to watch
- If anyone tells you they know how the situation in Brooklyn with Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving and Ben Simmons ends up, they’re lying. Those three are so unpredictable they could all be out at the trade deadline.
- Alec Burks and Kemba Walker are unlikely to stay with the rebuilding Pistons by the deadline. Both could add value off the bench for a playoff team, especially Burks. Look for Detroit to make moves here.
- John Collins and Clint Capela might not fit together in the new Atlanta structure, which means the Hawks could deal one of them. Collins has more trade value but is also the better overall player to retain.
- If the Kings fall flat, Harrison Barnes is a nice consolation prize on an expiring contract for contenders who miss out on other players. Barnes has championship experience, although he did throw up an all-time stinker in 2016 which led the Warriors to replace him.