With the Golden State Warriors wrapping up the Championship for the second time in three years and seemingly on the cusp of creating an NBA legacy, the approaching NBA draft is one of the few things capable of shaking up their dominance during the coming season. Featuring a mixture of seasoned superstars and the top picks from this years draft, we look at what could potentially be the top 10 trades in the NBA during the current pre-season.
NBA trades 2018
10. Lonzo Ball – UCLA to LA Lakers
With Markelle Fultz being set to join the Indiana Pacers as the number one pick, Lonzo Ball is widely being tipped to be the second. As the son of outspoken Ex-Footballer, LaVar Ball, there’s a definite sporting pedigree in his genetics but after stories emerged to throw doubt over his attitude and fitness a few weeks ago, Ball still looks set to be wearing the purple and gold Lakers shirt next season.
9. Paul George – Indiana Pacers to LA Lakers
Another incoming target for the Lakers could well be the four-time NBA All-Star shooting guard, definitely one of the biggest NBA trades news. Having grown disillusioned with the Pacers, it’s no secret that George wants out of Indiana. With a host of teams being linked with the 27-year old, it could again be the Lakers who add to their rank with talk of Julius Randle and possibly also Luol Deng going in the opposite direction with this deal.
8. Jayson Tatum – Duke University to Phoenix Suns
Previously tipped as the number one pick in this year’s NBA draft, Jayson is an intelligent wing player with a good shooting ability. Although he’s been heavily linked with the Boston Celtics, the lack of confirmation from the club as to who they will choose between him and Josh Jackson could well pave the way for this promising youngster to head to Phoenix where he will fit straight into their team.
7. Patrick Beverley – Houston Rockets to Utah
The Jazz has plenty of spare cap space and is in need of a quality Point Guard which Beverley certainly offers. While the 28-year old defensive player might not have a glittering array of NBA awards to his name, he is a player of genuine quality with a level of experience which could propel the Jazz’s future hopes if they can find a way to praise him away from Houston.
6. Jimmy Butler – Chicago Bulls to Boston Celtics
With the Celtics hopeful of snapping up Gordon Hayward as a free agent from the Jazz, part two of Danny Ainge’s master plan is to trade for Jimmy Butler to overhaul his current squad with a wealth of proven talent before the end of this off-season. With the Pacers turning down an offered trade for Butler in preference of the first pick in the trades and a focus on youth, the C’s have become the clear favorites to land him as they rebuild their squad.
5. Dennis Smith Jr – North Carolina State University to Orlando Magic
The quality of this year’s draft class can be highlighted by just how far down the expected pecking order Dennis Smith Jr is currently sitting. While many teams have been linked with this explosive Point Guard, it’s Orlando who is currently most in need of some Magic and the only thing which could prevent this pick is if someone makes him one of the top 5 picks of this year.
4. Chris Paul – Los Angeles Clippers to Cleveland Cavaliers
The experienced Point Guard would be a great addition to the Cavs and his slower pace would be well-matched to their style of play. The only downside in any deal would be the likelihood that Kyrie Irving would potentially move in the opposite direction to make the deal happen and he is a player which the Cav’s would severely miss going into next season.
3. Kyle Lowry – Toronto Raptors to Houston Rockets
With the Rockets looking to close the gap between themselves and the Golden State Warriors in the Western Conference, a big trade is looking likely to help push forward their credentials. While Lowry has been quoted as happy to extend his stay with the Raptors, a move away is still a distinct possibility for a player that has been named an NBA All-Star in the previous three consecutive seasons.
2. Klay Thompson – Golden State Warriors to Boston Celtics
With the Warriors currently possessing what is widely considered as the strongest squad in NBA history, Thompson has found himself flacking playing time as he enters the peak years of his career. With the Celtics determined to mount a serious challenge in the coming season and restore glory to the historic NBA club, Thompson could be a coup which solidifies their dreams.
1. Kristaps Porzingis – New York Knicks to Cleveland Cavaliers
With Phil Jackson refusing to rule out a trade that would see the Latvian Center leaving the club, many Knicks fans have been left fearing the worst. The fan favorite is the clear jewel in a fading crown at New York but a move to the Cavs could well push him to a new level and lift Cleveland from runners-up to next year’s champions.