NBA Trade Rumors Roundup, January 21st: Lakers Trade ruled out, Dennis Smith Jr. return and more
We have now passed the halfway point of the 2018/19 NBA season, and teams are starting to get a good idea about where they currently stand. Up until this point, both Conferences have remained competitive, with eleven teams in playoff contention in the Eastern Conference, whereas every team except the Phoenix Suns has a shot in the West.
The February trade deadline is also quickly approaching, as the NBA has made changes to the deadline so that it will now always occur 10 days before the All-Star game. This has been done so that players who get traded have time to settle into their new teams, and this year's trade window will close on February 7th.
So with the deadline just three weeks away, here are the biggest trade rumors you need to know for January 21.
Marc Gasol's Future is still undecided
Marc Gasol has been spent his entire NBA career with the Memphis Grizzlies, although the 33-year-old is currently being linked with a trade away from his longtime team. Despite this, Anthony Sain from the Memphis Flyer has discussed the difficulty that the Grizzlies will have in trading away Gasol:
Gasol's decline at both ends of the court is a key reason for the Grizzlies' failure to win this season. Of course, it would be great if a deal happened that would benefit the Grizzlies and Gasol, but the often-heard refrain of just trade Marc for some picks is more fantasy than reality. For the Grizzlies to be able to trade Gasol, the other team would have to be able to return comparable salary numbers.
Gasol has started 45 games for Memphis so far this season, averaging 15.2 points, 8.5 rebounds and 4.7 assists per game. The veteran center will become an unrestricted free agent in 2020.