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NBA Trade Rumors: Jan. 2–8

An actual trade this week sets off a flurry of new rumors.

NBA: Brooklyn Nets at Atlanta Hawks Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports

It was a busy week of trade rumors. First, we had actual trades this week!

On Saturday the Atlanta Hawks finalized a deal to send Kyle Korver to the Cleveland Cavaliers for a protected first-round pick along with Mike Dunleavy Jr., Mo Williams, and cash considerations. To help make this trade happen Cleveland reached a separate deal with Portland giving the Trail Blazers the rights to their 2017 first round pick in return for the rights to their 2018 first round pick, which they had previously traded to Portland. The trade kicked off a new round of rumors about Paul Millsap’s future with the Hawks.

Initial rumors that Paul Millsap may be available popped up last Sunday. Since then several teams have been rumored to have interest in the All-Star power forward. The Toronto Raptors, Denver Nuggets, New Orleans Pelicans, Sacramento Kings, and Portland Trail Blazers have all been mentioned as teams interested in acquiring Millsap. Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders tweeted that he thinks Toronto is the leading contender while adding that Portland is also “sniffing around” the possibility.

Speaking on ESPN’s TrueHoop podcast on Tuesday, Brian Windhorst of ESPN mentioned that the Hawks have come close to trading Millsap to both the Raptors and the Nuggets in the past year:

They almost traded him to Denver at the trade deadline last year, and then they also had a trade lined up for Jeff Teague and then ultimately decided not to do either trade and ended up in the second round against the Cavs, where they got swept. Then over the summer, after they did trade Jeff Teague and signed Dwight Howard, they were all set to trade Millsap if Al Horford had re-signed. They were going to trade him to Toronto. And then that deal fell through when Horford went to Boston.

On Saturday ESPN’s Marc Stein mentioned several players Denver is willing to part with in any potential trade:

The Nuggets, for the record, are now openly shopping third-year big man Jusuf Nurkic in addition to the widely assumed availability of vets Danilo Gallinari, Kenneth Faried and Wilson Chandler.

Stein also commented that Atlanta would look to get back at least one quality first round pick in exchange for Millsap who can become a free agent after this season by opting out of the final year of his contract.

Mike Scotto of Basketball Insiders reported New Orleans’ interest in Millsap on Thursday.

Chris Vivlamore, who covers the Hawks for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported that Sacramento is “very interested” in acquiring Millsap. He also mentioned Thabo Sefolosha and Tim Hardaway Jr. in an article Friday as other players Atlanta might be open to trading.

Zach Lowe of ESPN reiterated that the Hawks are looking to trade Hardaway on his podcast friday. “They’re already shopping Tim Hardaway for second round picks because they don’t want to pay him,” said Lowe. Atlanta acquired Hardaway from the New York Knicks for a first round pick in 2015.

The Cavaliers, meanwhile, might not be done making moves yet either. LeBron James told reporters that the team needs another point guard. They may not have to trade for one. Mario Chalmers, who played with James in Miami, and Jarrett Jack are free agents returning from injuries who could provide the backcourt depth James is looking for.

Joe Vardon of says the Cavs are monitoring the situation between Rajon Rondo and the Chicago Bulls. Rondo has sat out the last three games, and said last week that he would “absolutely” look to move on from the Bulls if he continues to not play.

Another Bull that popped up in trade rumors this week is Jimmy Butler. In a video for Bleacher Report, Ric Bucher said, “League sources say that the team made it known weeks ago through back channels that shooting guard Jimmy Butler is available for the right price.” Other sources, however, “emphatically deny” that Chicago is willing to move their All Star small forward. Butler leads the Bulls in scoring with 25.2 points to go with 6.8 rebounds and 4.5 assists per game.

Dallas Mavericks center Andrew Bogut says that he wouldn’t be surprised if he was traded before the Feb. 23 trade deadline. He told Sky Sports Radio that he did not plan on staying in Dallas after his contract runs out after this season:

Thankfully I’m a free agent here so I only have a couple of months more here and then will most likely move on,” Bogut said. “I don’t see myself hanging around with everything that’s gone on. It will be an interesting six months ahead.”

On the possibility of the Mavericks trading him, Bogut said, “I’ve got a valuable contract … having four months left on my contract I’m a valuable commodity to be moved.” Dallas is tied for the fewest wins in the Western Conference at 11-26. Bogut, who is averaging 9.7 rebounds in 23.8 minutes per game, was recently moved out of the starting lineup. He told ESPN’s Tim MacMahon that he doesn’t want to be traded but was just acknowledging the possibility.

Some other notes from around the league this week:

  • Ian Begley of ESPN wrote on Wednesday that the New York Knicks have identified Phoenix Suns forward P.J. Tucker as a potential trade target.
  • In a chat on Tuesday, Steve Kyler listed Nerlens Noel, Rudy Gay, Brandon Knight, Goran Dragic, and Jeff Green as players likely to be traded before the deadline.
  • Marc Stein wrote on Saturday that Miami is asking too much for Dragic to encourage any serious trade discussions.
  • Stein also reported that the New Jersey Nets are asking for two first round picks for Brook Lopez.
  • He also mentioned Portland’s interest in Tyson Chandler—a subject Timmay! covered on Saturday.

There are plenty of trade rumors going around. Check back next week for an update on all the latest.

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