5 Most Intriguing Trades ahead of the 2023 NBA trade deadline

As we all know around this time, many NBA teams have different goals to accomplish each and every season. Some teams are trying to win the NBA title this year or at least willing to be competitive enough to win games this season. There are also teams that rather lose games (for now) to have a chance at a top lottery pick to help them compete to win at a later time. With the trade deadline a few days away, many teams are assessing to see if they are good enough to make a move to improve their team or to rather sell off some of their assets to other teams in order to get future assets. 

With that being said, there are many names that are floating around that are available for trade. Here we’ll look at five potential deals that are intriguing if executed. 

Trade Between Toronto Raptors and New Orleans Pelicans

Raptors Receive: Devonte’ Graham, Naji Marshall, Trey Murphy III, 2024 first-round pick (Via Milwaukee)

Pelicans Receive: O.G. Anunoby, Dalano Banton

With this trade, the Raptors get to turn one solid wing in Anunoby into two younger wings in Marshall and Murphy, who also are promising as well as been playing real minutes for the Pelicans behind Brandon Ingram and Herb Jones. The Raptors also acquired another pick (from Milwaukee) as well as cap filler in Graham to make the deal work. These assets are more than enough to solidify the Raptors trading away Anunoby here. As for the Pelicans, they get a slight upgrade defensively on the wings from the Marshall and Murphy combo to Anunoby, who they can star alongside Ingram, Jones, or Zion Willamson or they can have him come off the bench to make the pelicans second unit more terrifying, especially on defense alongside Jose Alvarado.

Trade Between Chicago Bulls and Miami Heat

Bulls Receive: Victor Oladipo, Duncan Robinson, 2023 first-round pick (Via Milwaukee), 2026 Second round pick (Via Oklahoma City, Dallas, or Philadelphia)

Heat Receive: Demar Derozan

Cue in the Derozan and Lowry reunion in Miami here. The Heat gets an all-star in Derozan to pair with Jimmy Butler, Tyler Herro, and Bam Adebayo. Although it will cost them a first a second-round pick to get done, (and some shooting in Robinson) this helps the Heat’s offense tremendously but adding another legitimate scorer in Derozan. As for the Bulls, they replaced Derozan with a different look at the wings in Robinson and Oladipo plus obtained future assets in a first and second-round pick in exchange for letting Derozan go. The Bulls won’t be winning a title anytime soon so they might as well offload Derozan into future assets to help their team’s future going forward.

Trade Between Toronto Raptors and Phoenix Suns

Raptors Receive: Dario Saric, Deandre Ayton, 2023 first-round pick, 2025 first-round pick 

Suns Receive: Khem Birch, Pascal Siakam, Christian Koloko, 2023 second-round pick

Here we’ll see a shift in team philosophies with both teams in this deal. The Raptors turn Siakam into two future picks and a promising young center in Ayton. Not sure if Ayton is the right player to put next to Scottie Barnes, but this trade does two things in upgrading the Center spot in Ayton as well as gives them the two picks to use in future trades. As for the Suns, they use Ayton and their two picks into Siakam, who is by far the better player and is more versatile. They also receive Koloko and Birch, who are better fits at center next to Devin Booker and the rest of the Suns’ roster, as those two big men are more pick-and-roll style bigs who don’t need the ball as much as Ayton does. Saric is only in the deal to make the Salaries work, but can be a short-term replacement for Siakam or can serve as a backup big who can stretch the floor for the Raptors.

Trade Between Minnesota Timberwolves and Brooklyn Nets

Timberwolves Receive: Patty Mills, Joe Harris, Royce O’Neal

Nets Receive: D’Angelo Russel, Wendell Moore Jr

With the Nets now in a need of a PG, what better way to fill that need than to bring back Russell? Russell who was shipped to Golden State in the Kevin Durant sign and trade deal (which also helped them make room for his replacement Kyrie Irving) who be the perfect guy to replace Irving as the Nets’ new PG. Being that he has had his best years in Brooklyn, the Nets would bring him back here and see if they can spark the old Russell, who played extremely well during his tenure on the Nets. As for the timberwolves, they turn Russell into more shooting with Harris and Mills as well as solidify their defense even more with O’Neal. This move will also push Anthony Edwards into the primary ballhandler, thus transitioning Edwards to become the PG for the Timberwolves going forward.

Trade Between Toronto Raptors and Minnesota Timberwolves

Raptors Receive: Karl Anthony-Towns

Timberwolves Receive: Pascal Siakam

Now here is where you fix glaring weaknesses for both teams here. In addition, each team is basically trading one of their star players without losing much star value in return. The Timberwolves get Siakam, who is a more natural PF than Towns is and would be (in theory) the better fit alongside Gobert, being that Siakam is a solid two-way big that can get you buckets as well as defend. As for the Raptors, they fill their need at C with Towns and although they trade away Siakam in the process, they can now build this team around the skills of Scottie Barnes instead of deferring to Siakam. With the addition of Towns, they fill their glaring need as well as get rid of some redundancy at both forward spots with Siakam gone, now that they can play Barnes with O.G. Anunoby at both SF and PF respectively. 

What do you think of these trades? Do you think they’ll move the needle at all for either team? Or do you think some of these teams involved should just stand pat and not do any moves? Only time will tell.

Share this article:

Born and Raised in the Greater NYC Area. Long time New York Knicks fan as well as a Huge NBA fan since 2006. You can follow him on twitter at @KyosotaComics.