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NBA Trade Rumors (02/03/2012)

As the NBA trade deadline approaches, here are some rumors that are buzzing around the league. 1) Jason Terry According to CBS Sports NBA Insider Ken Berger, the injuries and luxury tax issues may force Bostonโ€™s hand when it comes to dealing Terry: "With injuries mounting, teams have begun inquiring whether Boston is willing to trade Jason Terry to get under luxury tax, sources say." There are plenty of teams fighting for a playoff spot that would love the outside shooting of Terry, but the inconsistencies in the veteran's play this year will not make a deal easy. Add in the three-year deal worth $15.6 million Terry is currently signed to, and a team trying to make a deal must have a low payroll already or not be worried about the luxury tax. 2) Pau Gasol Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today reports that it could be the Boston Celtics that make a move to acquire Gasol if he has an issue with being a bench player: "But don't rule out Pau Gasol. Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak knows how to execute a big deal, and the season-ending back injury to Celtics rookie forward Jared Sullinger makes Boston even more active in trade talks" While it would be hard for the Lakers to get the most value for Gasol from a veteran-laden Celtics team, the possibility that L.A. could get a shooting guard like Jason Terry in the deal and another bench presence would be a short-term solution for both teams. If the Lakers continue to play well, though, Los Angeles will not make a major move at the trade deadline. 3) Josh Smith Hoopsworld NBA insider Alex Kennedy reports about which teams are at least interested in hearing what it would take to acquire Smith: "I was told that three teams - the Phoenix Suns, Houston Rockets and Charlotte Bobcats - had exploratory talks with the Atlanta Hawks." Despite a lack of elite talent around himโ€”something that has plagued the Hawks for yearsโ€”Smith is averaging 16.9 points, 8.5 rebounds and 4.0 assists per game. Any team looking to contend this postseason or even build around Smith going forward should be kicking the tires on the veteran. Of all the teams reportedly interested in the forward, the idea of the Houston Rockets (more than enough assets to make a deal happen) adding Smith to an already strong core of young players would be the best long-term coup possible for all parties involved.
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