NBA Trade Rumors: 5 Interesting destinations for Anthony Davis if he is traded
There is a blizzard of rumors swirling around the New Orleans Pelicans' superstar pivot Anthony Davis. Their center is coveted by many general managers and teams throughout the NBA. Pelicans’ general manager Dell Demps is in a tough spot.
He can wait until this summer to offer the big man a supermax contract that would pay Davis 35% of the team's payroll as a 7-year veteran. It would be for another five years which would kick in after his current 5 years $145 million dollar deal expires in the summer of 2021.
However, Davis could reject the supermax extension this summer and would then almost certainly opt out of the last year of his current deal making him a free agent in the summer of 2020. Ultimately Demps’ dilemma is if Davis rejects the supermax deal this summer. Demps could try and trade Davis.
However, with opposing General Managers knowing Davis will be an unrestricted free agent they might not want to give up assets and draft picks. General Managers knowing they could sign Davis in 2020 and add his immense talents to their current roster would play hardball with Demps.
The trade deadline is February 7th, 2019 so Demps could move Davis now when he would most likely fetch a hefty return for the star center from a desperate team. The Lakers are interested and so to are the Celtics. However, the Celtics must wait until the summer to make a play for Davis because of the CBA’s Designated Rookie Rule. Kyrie Irving’s contract has to expire first.
It’s a rule obviously meant to prevent certain teams from stockpiling young rising talent by pillaging other teams. Apart from these obvious rumors, of Davis to the Los Angeles Lakers or to Boston, here is a quick look at potential destinations for Davis that are somewhat under the radar.
#1 Houston Rockets
After winning 65 games last season, the Rockets struggled out of the gate this season. However, they are on a meteoric rise in the Western Conference standings. They currently are 4th overall in the west.
They are doing it mostly on the strength of a record-breaking stretch of 30 plus point games from one James Harden. Harden has put the Rockets completely on his back in the absence of the Rockets star point guard Chris Paul who is expected back at the end of January.
Currently, Eric Gordon and Brandon Knight are hurt as well. The Rockets are a perimeter-oriented team and if Paul makes it back healthy he and Harden will need help. Earlier this season when things were not going well the Rockets were willing to deal 4 future first round draft picks to the T-Wolves for Jimmy Butler.
They could offer Clint Capela who is a less dynamic offensive version of Davis, either Eric Gordon or Brandon Knight, to make salaries match and 2 first round draft picks for Anthony Davis.
Davis would give Houston everything they get out of Capela defensively and so much more offensively. Davis would bring an inside post game the Rockets don’t currently have. However, Davis can play on the perimeter as well and could take a lot of pressure off of Harden and Paul. The Rockets would become a true contender to the Golden State Warriors’ dynasty.