NBA free agency reaching a lull and fewer transactions happening, there’s not much to report on a daily basis. However, several teams still need to make significant decisions regarding their rosters before the majority of clubs begin training camp in October.
In the situation, here are the top five teams that require one or two strategic moves.
The Heat and Trail Blazers
At present, Miami and Portland are discussing a potential trade deal for Damian Lillard; however, there are still many uncertainties that need to be resolved. Miami has already lost two important players Max Strus and Gabe Vincent during the offseason. To acquire Lillard, the team may have to part with Tyler Herro, Kyle Lowry, and Nikola Jović, along with several first-round picks.
If Portland decides to trade Lillard, it would also make little sense to keep Jusuf Nurkic, the team’s center for the past six and a half seasons who still has three years and $54 million remaining on his contract.
Fred VanVleet, a former All-Star and NBA champion, signed a three-year contract worth $130 million with the Rockets. This move is surprising because Toronto did not extend his contract before and did not trade him for valuable assets even though he is 29 years old.
Now when VanVleet leaving without compensation, there are concerns about Toronto’s next move. Even though they have a talented team, they didn’t make any moves to improve when they seemed to be out of contention. Now that Pascal Siakam is the only star left, some are wondering if the team should trade him as he is entering the last year of his contract and Toronto doesn’t seem interested in offering him a max extension. Several teams, like the Pacers, Magic, and Hawks, are reportedly interested in acquiring Siakam.
Despite already having two talented All-Rookie forwards in Jae’sean Tate (2022) and Tari Eason (2023), they recently drafted two more in Amen Thompson and Cam Whitmore, both standing at 6′ 7″. They even added veteran small forward Dillon Brooks to the mix. Although having so many young forwards with a perceived lack of discipline may seem like a strange situation, it may give the Rockets some flexibility to use them as trade assets and address other areas of need in the future.
If Houston has an excess of small forwards, Orlando appears to have too many shooting guards. Before the draft, the Magic had point guards Markelle Fultz and Cole Anthony, as well as shooting guards Jalen Suggs, Gary Harris, and Caleb Houstan on their roster. Additionally, with their sixth and eleventh picks, they added Anthony Black, a point guard from Arkansas, and Jett Howard, a shooting guard from Michigan.
Orlando has added Franz Wagner and Rookie of the Year Paolo Banchero, who are currently the club’s top players, making them one of the most wing-heavy teams in the sport. It would be beneficial for the Magic to trade one or two of their young players for a talented big man.
Players must be 21 years of age or older or reach the minimum age for gambling in their respective state and located in jurisdictions where online gambling is legal. Please play responsibly. Bet with your head, not over it. If you or someone you know has a gambling problem, and wants help, call or visit: (a) the Council on Compulsive Gambling of New Jersey at 1-800-Gambler or www.800gambler.org; or (b) Gamblers Anonymous at 855-2-CALL-GA or www.gamblersanonymous.org.
This site is using Cloudflare and adheres to the Google Safe Browsing Program. We adapted Google's Privacy Guidelines to keep your data safe at all times.