Welcome to the NBA trade deadline at Brew Hoop, where we ask that everybody use coasters and please don’t feed the aging pugs from the table, thanks. No, it’s not a roundtable (that’ll be coming soon), but it is a place to gather and discuss the goings-on of the busiest week of the NBA season.
The Milwaukee Bucks are reigning NBA champions. Nope, still feels good to say. Everybody else wants to knock them off their lofty perch, and this week is the opportunity some contenders will create to do just that. But the Bucks want to stay put, and here is where we’ll collect any of the whispers, rumblings, and scuttlebutt relevant to the Bucks.
Bucks Out on Schröder
Remember the Dennis Schröder rumor? Turns out, the Bucks are out on that deal, and for good reason.
I'm told that reports Boston and Milwaukee have talked a Dennis Schroder-Donte DiVincenzo swap are accurate. What has killed a deal thus far is the Bucks want the Celtics to include Grant Williams in the deal and Boston is unwilling to part with their backup big man.— Keith Smith (@KeithSmithNBA) February 8, 2022
Imagining the conversation between the two front offices might amuse only me, but since I’m the writer here I’ll foist my head-canon upon you all now.
BUCKS: Hey, we want Schröder.
CELTICS: Cool! We want Donte.
BUCKS: Cool. We also want Grant Williams.
CELTICS: What? Not cool! We want Grant Williams.
BUCKS: ...lol bye.
Kudos to Jon Horst and company for pushing the envelope. Schröder was a questionable fit, but Grant Williams would have been a nice front court addition to help round out the rotation. He’s no PJ Tucker, but he’s no Semi Ojeleye either (sorry, Semi...), and that’s the type of swing the Bucks ought to take with what few trade assets they have.
Big-ish Moves Out West
As Pelicans await return of Zion Williamson, McCollum delivers a dynamic scorer in backcourt that desperately needed it. After starting 1-12, Pels have elevated to a play-in tournament spot. No team since 1996-97 Suns has made playoffs from that kind of a start. https://t.co/NAUQJ0hl93— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) February 8, 2022
The Blazers keep on jettisoning useful players in the interest of accelerating a rebuild while Damian Lillard recovers from an abdominal injury. Bucks Twitter had bandied about some interest in Larry Nance and Josh Hart, or a reunion with Tony Snell, but the salaries involved never made it more than wishful thinking.
Pacers Making Moves
ESPN story on Sacramento acquiring Indiana's Domantas Sabonis -- and parting with guard Tyrese Haliburton to make the deal: https://t.co/FP6nu0E6Fl— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) February 8, 2022
The division “rival” Indiana Pacers have parted ways with All Star big man Domantas Sabonis, alongside Jeremy Lamb and brother-of-Jrue Justin Holiday, in exchange for Tyrese Haliburton, Buddy Hield, and Tristan Thompson. This deal feels an awful lot like rearranging deck chairs for both franchises, who are each going nowhere fast. Kings faithful loved Haliburton, and were not pleased about the deal. Indiana gets back a guard with high upside while also (apparently) committing to Myles Turner as their main big going forward.
Beal Out of Action
Washington Wizards All-Star guard Bradley Beal plans to undergo season-ending surgery on his left wrist, sources tell ESPN.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) February 8, 2022
The Washington Wizards started the season hot but took a sharp downturn, which finds them today in 11th place in the Eastern Conference. The news that Bradley Beal is now out for the rest of the season with wrist surgery doesn’t mean much for them (they’re already out of the play-in tournament), but it does take them off the board as a buyer in a win-now trade, or as a dark horse candidate in the Ben Simmons sweepstakes. The NBA is a tangled web, and this news might feel unrelated but could be a factor in any blockbuster decisions made by Philly or Brooklyn in the next two days.
What’s the Deal In Brooklyn?
Things are starting to come to a head for the Brooklyn Nets. With Kevin Durant sidelined by a knee injury, Kyrie Irving half-sidelined by his vaccine refusal, and James Harden dealing with another flareup of that bum hamstring, the preseason “odds-on favorites” for the title are coming apart at the seams. Harden, who can enter free agency this summer, reportedly has had enough and wants out, according to ESPN’s Brian Windhorst. The main rumor being pushed is a deal between Brooklyn and the Philadelphia 76ers, primarily involving Harden and Ben Simmons (who has refused to play for the Sixers all year long). However, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that the two sides are actually not talking, and that there is no deal being negotiated.
The Nets are in shambles and could get stuck with an unhappy James Harden for the rest of the year, and the Sixers might not be able to move off of Ben Simmons. That would be a pretty tremendous outcome for Bucks fans.
UPDATE: James Harden can’t even ask for a trade, despite wanting out.
ESPN Sources: Although Brooklyn Nets guard James Harden wants a trade to the Philadelphia 76ers, he has resisted making that formal request out of fear of the public backlash that would come with asking out of a second franchise in consecutive seasons. https://t.co/My5XljBlI1— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) February 10, 2022
Bucks Still Eyeing Schröder?
The Bucks and Celtics are still keeping in touch regarding a Dennis Schroder-Donte DiVincenzo swap, sources tell @celticsblog. Milwaukee is a little worried about PG depth with George Hill currently out. Celtics won't add players or picks to Schroder, however.— Keith Smith (@KeithSmithNBA) February 10, 2022
Not much new here. Milwaukee is willing to trade Donte, but Boston is hesitant to send back anybody else along with Schröder (namely, Grant Williams). Will anything change in the next few hours? The Bucks don’t have anything else to really give here, so Boston seems to have the leverage (and is comfortable leaking it to the media).
Ibaka In, Dragic Coming?
Report: Milwaukee Bucks Trade Donte DiVincenzo, Semi Ojeleye, Rodney Hood; Acquire Serge Ibaka https://t.co/aSw9rae4K1— Brew Hoop (@brewhoop) February 10, 2022
The Bucks made a trade, and it’s a pretty complicated one. Adam has the initial writeup here, but the key aspects of it are as follows: Donte DiVincenzo, Rodney Hood, and Semi Ojeleye are out, Serge Ibaka is in, and Milwaukee also will receive cash considerations (yay?) and a pair of second-round picks (yay!) for their trouble.
This 3-for-1 deal opens up a pair of standard roster spots, and according to Woj the Bucks have their eyes set on Goran Dragic, who was just traded from Toronto to San Antonio and expects to negotiate a buyout.
ESPN Sources: The Spurs -- who are trading for Toronto's Goran Dragic -- are expected to negotiate a contract buyout with Dragic. Among the interested expected to be interested once he becomes a free agent: Dallas, Milwaukee, Chicago, Clippers.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) February 10, 2022
They Did It
Ben Simmons got his way, and is out of Philly. James Harden got his way, and is out of Brooklyn. The Nets have already blown up their superteam, while the Sixers have given Joel Embiid a backcourt partner that will either elevate them to “true contender” status...or lead to another postseason meltdown. Time will tell!
We’ll update this post as often as we can with new stories come out between now and the February 10 deadline. Feel free to post in the comments and follow along with us!