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NBA Trade Rumours: 3 players that the New Orleans Pelicans are currently targeting

ANALYST
Rumors
2.80K   //    14 Jan 2019, 01:17 IST

Atlanta Hawks v Boston Celtics
Atlanta Hawks v Boston Celtics

The New Orleans Pelicans are desperate to make the NBA playoffs this season, as the Pelicans are aware that time is running out to keep Anthony Davis. Davis can opt of his contract in 2020, and the 5-time All-Star could potentially demand a trade this summer, as both the Boston Celtics and Los Angeles Lakers are known to hold a long term interest in the center.

Despite this, the Pelicans still believe they have a shot at retaining Davis, who has been with the organization since the team drafted him with the first pick of the 2012 NBA draft. Due to this, the Pelicans are likely to be in the trade market this month as they look to fuel a sustained playoff push, and with the NBA trade deadline just under one month away, here we will look at three players from around the NBA that are currently interesting the New Orleans Pelicans.


#3 J.R. Smith

Atlanta Hawks v Cleveland Cavaliers
Atlanta Hawks v Cleveland Cavaliers

J.R. Smith has not played for the Cleveland Cavaliers since the early stages of the season. The Cavs decision to bench Smith came after the veteran publicly criticized the direction of the franchise, whilst also stating his desire to be traded. Smith has been linked to a number of teams since, and back in December, the Ringer and Kevin O'Connor revealed the Pelicans interest in Smith:

Expect the Cavaliers to try to move on next from JR Smith. I heard this week they received some interest for Smith from the Rockets and Pelicans—both teams need depth at the wing position. Smith's 2019-20 salary is guaranteed for only $3.9M, so it has some value as a trade chip.

Smith remains a reliable source of production from the field, averaging 8.3 points, 2.9 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game during the 17/18 season. The Pelicans, however, seem reluctant to make an immediate trade for Smith, as the player could still agree to a buyout with the Cavs, so this deal may be completed after the deadline.

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