Dorian Finney-Smith

Western Trade Rumors: Kings, Pelicans, D. White, Mavs, More

The Kings are still expected to make some sort of major move ahead of this year’s trade deadline in an effort to strengthen their roster for a postseason push, writes Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report. Sacramento has expressed interest in both Pacers centers, Myles Turner and Domantas Sabonis, but Fischer hears that Indiana’s asking price has been much higher than what teams are willing to give up for either player.

According to Fischer, who says the Pelicans also have interest in Sabonis, Turner is still the more likely trade candidate of the two Indiana centers, but only if the Pacers are willing to drop their asking price a little, since teams are concerned about Turner’s injury recovery timeline and his ability to help a team this season. If the price remains high, Turner may stay in Indiana until the offseason.

One team to watch on the Turner front is the Trail Blazers, who gained some momentum in discussions with the Pacers prior to the big man’s injury, according to Fischer. If Portland is focused more on next season than this season, acquiring Turner would make some sense, but the Blazers still hold a play-in spot in the West, so they probably aren’t prepared to just throw in the towel.

Here are a few more trade rumors from around the West:

  • Kings center Tristan Thompson is considered to be available in exchange for a second-round pick, says Fischer. I’m a little skeptical that Sacramento will be able to get positive value for Thompson by himself.
  • The Spurs received a call from the Hawks about guard Derrick White, Fischer reports. It doesn’t sound like those discussions gained any traction, but Fischer points out that San Antonio has been viewed since 2020 as a potential suitor for Atlanta big man John Collins.
  • As previously relayed, rival executives think the Mavericks may trade one of Jalen Brunson or Dorian Finney-Smith by February 10. Both players will be unrestricted free agents this summer, so there will be nothing stopping them from signing elsewhere, and if the Mavs do re-sign both, they’ll likely be taxpayers. However, Dallas has expressed confidence in its ability to re-sign both players, according to Fischer, who adds that there’s a belief Finney-Smith will seek $15MM annually on his next deal.
  • The Thunder‘s asking price in any trade for forward Kenrich Williams is believed to be a first-round pick, per Fischer.

Latest On Jalen Brunson, Dorian Finney-Smith

A lot of executives around the NBA think the Mavericks may trade either Jalen Brunson or Dorian Finney-Smith prior to the February 10 deadline, according to Michael Scotto of HoopsHype. Scotto first stated two weeks ago that rival execs believed there may be an opportunity to acquire Brunson or Finney-Smith.

As Scotto reported earlier and restated during the most recent HoopsHype Podcast, the Mavs project to go well into the luxury tax if they re-sign both Brunson and Finney-Smith to lucrative contracts this offseason when the duo reaches unrestricted free agency, which is one reason why the team would be incentivized to make a move. Those two players are also among Dallas’ best trade assets if the team wants to try to acquire an impact player.

The Pistons are one club worth keeping an eye on for Brunson, according to Scotto, who says the fourth-year point guard has “some admirers in Detroit.” The Mavericks are known to be interested in Jerami Grant, so Brunson or Finney-Smith could head to Detroit if the Pistons decide to send Grant to Dallas.

Scotto also points out that the Pistons are one of the few teams projected to have cap room this summer, so if their interest in Brunson is real and they don’t acquire him at the deadline, they could make an offseason run at him.

Meanwhile, the Hawks, Trail Blazers, Pacers, Wizards, and Pelicans are among the teams that have been keeping an eye on Finney-Smith, says Scotto. Those clubs aren’t exactly title contenders, so they’d likely view Finney-Smith as a potential long-term core piece rather than a short-term solution to push them over the top.

Of course, the three-and-D wing would fit well on virtually any roster, so he’ll likely have many more suitors than just those five teams.

Trade Market Notes: Grant, Wall, Finney-Smith

Discussing the Jerami Grant situation on his latest Hoop Collective podcast, ESPN’s Brian Windhorst suggested that Grant’s agents provided the Pistons with a handful of preferred destinations in the event their client is traded.

“I was told his representation came to the Pistons and said ‘If you’re going to trade him, here’s a list of teams we would be interested in going to play for,'” Windhorst said (hat tip to RealGM).

The Pistons have a good relationship with Grant, so if they get multiple trade offers they like, I imagine they’ll try to get something done with one of the teams on his list. However, as Windhorst notes, the Pistons still aren’t sure whether they’ll move Grant at all, let alone to one of his preferred landing spots.

Here are a few more notes on the 2021/22 NBA trade market:

  • In that same Hoop Collective podcast, ESPN’s Marc J. Spears said that John Wall is working out in Miami, away from the Rockets, as the team continues to survey his trade market. Although Houston has had some conversations about Wall, most of those scenarios are viewed as “pie in the sky,” according to Spears, who adds that the club views a swap involving Russell Westbrook as the most realistic option for Wall at this point. During his conversation with Spears, Windhorst stated that the Rockets guard isn’t interested in losing any money in a buyout agreement.
  • Already viewed as a strong defender, Mavericks forward Dorian Finney-Smith has expanded his offensive game this season, writes Callie Caplan of The Dallas Morning News. Finney-Smith has taken on more ball-handling responsibilities, and his scoring average of 10.3 PPG would be a career high. Besides benefiting the Mavs on the court, Finney-Smith’s development has increased his value on the trade market, Caplan observes. It also likely puts him in line for a bigger payday when he reaches free agency this summer, which the Mavs and any potential suitor will have to take into account as they weigh possible deals.
  • Yossi Gozlan of HoopsHype took an in-depth look at what each NBA team could – and should – do at the February 10 trade deadline.

Trade Rumors: Ross, Harris, Dinwiddie, Mavs, Grant, Pistons

The Magic are widely expected to trade Terrence Ross and/or Gary Harris before the February 10 trade deadline, assuming they can get sufficient draft capital in return, Marc Stein writes in his latest Substack column.

Ross and Harris aren’t among the top tier of players on this season’s trade market, so it may not require massive offers to get the Magic to part with one or both of them. For that reason, Stein writes, some people around the NBA view Ross in particular as a “natural target” for a team like the Jazz or Lakers — Utah and L.A. are seeking upgrades on the wing but have already given up future first-round picks and may not have the assets necessary to make a run at a higher-end target.

Here are a few more trade-related updates from around the league:

  • Some executives who spoke to Eric Pincus of Bleacher Report believe the Wizards are open to discussing point guard Spencer Dinwiddie, who hasn’t meshed especially well with Bradley Beal. While it makes sense that Dinwiddie wouldn’t be untouchable, I’d be a little surprised if the Wizards gave up on their backcourt pairing this quickly.
  • Pincus adds within the same story that the Mavericks have been mentioned as a possible “dark-horse” suitor for Pistons forward Jerami Grant. A Dallas offer would likely start with Dorian Finney-Smith and Dwight Powell, says Pincus.
  • Grant may well be traded at the deadline, especially if the Pistons can acquire a player like John Collins or Patrick Williams, but we shouldn’t be surprised if he stays put, writes James L. Edwards III of The Athletic. Edwards believes there’s a “real possibility” that general manager Troy Weaver decides to hang onto Grant until the offseason if he doesn’t get an offer he loves.
  • Edwards also expects the Pistons to remain on the lookout for a deal that nets them a promising young big man after their acquisition of Bol Bol fell through. Edwards identifies Kings forward Marvin Bagley III and Suns center Jalen Smith as two players worth keeping an eye on.

Pincus’ Latest: Pacers, Mavs, Cavs, Blazers, Hawks, Avdija

As they weigh their options on the trade market in the next few weeks, the Pacers will be seeking shooting and players who fit head coach Rick Carlisle‘s system, sources tell Eric Pincus of Bleacher Report.

As Pincus observes, this could make the Mavericks an intriguing trade partner for the Pacers. Reports have indicated that Dallas has interest in Myles Turner, and Carlisle may value some of his former players more than other teams would. According to Pincus, several rival executives had considered the Mavs the favorites to land Turner using a package that includes Dwight Powell as a salary-matching piece, plus either Jalen Brunson and/or Dorian Finney-Smith.

Turner’s health complicates matters, however. The Pacers’ big man is expected to be sidelined through the February 10 trade deadline due to a foot injury, which will likely temper enthusiasm among his potential suitors. Additionally, league sources tell Marc Stein (Twitter link) that the Mavericks have recently backed off their pursuit of Turner as their defense has moved into the NBA’s top five.

While Turner may no longer be a top target, it’s still possible the Mavericks will consider moving Brunson or Finney-Smith for a roster upgrade, especially if they’re concerned about their ability to sign either player this summer, when they’ll reach unrestricted free agency. According to Pincus, there’s a sense around the league that Finney-Smith probably won’t get more than the full mid-level exception, whereas Brunson is “believed by many” to be seeking a four-year, $80MM deal.

Here’s more from Pincus:

  • Rival teams don’t get the sense that the Cavaliers are making Isaac Okoro or Kevin Love readily available, Pincus says. That doesn’t mean that either player – especially Love – is untouchable, but it sounds like they’re not being actively shopped.
  • There’s an expectation that the Trail Blazers will pursue deals that help them shed a few million dollars in salary to get under the luxury tax line, according to Pincus, who suggests Robert Covington, Jusuf Nurkic, and even Larry Nance Jr. are among Portland’s potential trade candidates. The Blazers gave up a first-round pick for Nance last summer.
  • Some executives around the NBA believe the Hawks acquired a first-round pick from New York in the Cam Reddish trade in an effort to improve a potential offer for Sixers star Ben Simmons, writes Pincus. Philadelphia wasn’t interested in Reddish, Pincus adds.
  • Multiple teams have interest in Wizards forward Deni Avdija, per Pincus. If Washington looks to upgrade its roster, it’s safe to assume Avdija is someone potential trade partners will ask about.

Trade Rumors: Finney-Smith, Pacers, Mavs, Grant, Howard, Lillard, Harris

Following up on Michael Scotto’s report that stated teams around the NBA are eyeing Mavericks forward Dorian Finney-Smith, Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report says Rick Carlisle was considered Finney-Smith’s “biggest advocate” in Dallas, adding that the Pacers are considered a possible suitor for that reason.

According to veteran reporter Marc Stein, the Mavericks have been trying to get in the mix for Pacers center Myles Turner or Hawks forward John Collins. Dallas may need to part with at least one of Jalen Brunson and Finney-Smith in such a deal — Stein suggests those two 2022 free-agents-to-be have “no shortage of suitors” around the NBA.

However, Stein also points out that in order to make a major move, Dallas may need to find a taker for Tim Hardaway Jr. While Hardaway’s $21MM salary makes him the Mavericks’ most logical salary-matching piece if they make a play for someone like Turner ($18MM) or Collins ($23MM), his production has dipped to 14.5 PPG on .395/.328/.747 shooting through 35 games (30.6 MPG) this season.

Here are a few more trade rumors from around the league:

  • Although Jerami Grant has frequently been cited as a trade candidate in recent weeks, Marc Stein says the Pistons forward isn’t a lock to be on the move. General manager Troy Weaver remains a “staunch backer” of Grant, and there’s a sense he may prefer to hang onto the 27-year-old. However, vice chairman Arn Tellem also has a significant voice in personnel moves, so the decision isn’t just up to Weaver.
  • Jake Fischer adds Dwight Howard to the list of minimum-salary Lakers veterans who are thought to be on the trade block. DeAndre Jordan and Kent Bazemore are also part of that group.
  • The Trail Blazers had zero intention of trading Damian Lillard prior to his abdominal surgery and still has no desire to trade him going forward, sources tell ESPN’s Zach Lowe.
  • Noting that Gary Harris has had a nice bounce-back season for the Magic, Lowe says contending teams have inquired about the veteran wing as a trade candidate or possible buyout signing. A previous report stated Orlando is seeking a first-round pick in exchange for Harris, but I’m not sure that’s realistic, given his $20MM+ expiring contract, unless the Magic take on some unwanted long-term money.

Scotto’s Latest: Bulls, Hawks, Finney-Smith, Thunder, Rockets

The Bulls figure to explore potential roster upgrades at the trade deadline, but they’re resistant to the idea of moving Patrick Williams, Michael Scotto said on the latest episode of the HoopsHype Podcast.

If the Bulls want to make a major move at the deadline, it may have to involve Williams, 2020’s No. 4 overall pick, since the club has already traded away multiple future first-rounders. Williams’ ability to help the team this year may also be limited, since a wrist injury is expected to sideline him for most or all of the regular season.

Still, based on Scotto’s reporting, it sounds as if Chicago will likely hang onto Williams. One Bulls player who is available in the right deal is 2019 lottery pick Coby White, rival executives tell Scotto.

Here’s more from the HoopsHype Podcast:

  • Hawks forward Danilo Gallinari could be had for a first-round pick or as part of a larger package, rival executives tell Scotto. I’m very skeptical any team will be willing to give up a first-rounder for Gallinari unless they can dump an unwanted long-term contract on Atlanta. Scotto adds that execs believe Hawks forward Cam Reddish is more likely than not to be on the move at the deadline.
  • Mavericks forward Dorian Finney-Smith and Thunder forward Kenrich Williams are among the role players on modest contracts who are drawing trade interest from playoff teams, says Scotto. Oklahoma City is obviously more likely than Dallas to be a seller, but rival executives believe there may be an opportunity to poach Finney-Smith since he and Jalen Brunson are free agents in 2022 and re-signing both would likely make the Mavs a taxpayer.
  • Playoff-caliber teams are also monitoring Rockets veterans Eric Gordon and Daniel Theis, according to Scotto. They’ve been mentioned multiple times this season as potential trade candidates, since they probably don’t fit the timeline of a rebuilding Houston squad.
  • League sources tell Scotto that Thunder rookie Aaron Wiggins is a good candidate to have his two-way contract turned into a standard deal at some point this season.

Southwest Notes: Poeltl, Finney-Smith, Green, Kleber

Jakob Poeltl has been out since November 1 due to the league’s health and safety protocols and the Spurs have missed his inside presence, Tom Orsborn of the San Antonio Express-News tweets. Poeltl is the team’s top rebounder at 9.7 per game.

“We are a small team,” Spurs forward Thaddeus Young said. “We are shorthanded most nights as far as getting rebounds and being physical under the basket.”

Poeltl is back with the Spurs, but won’t play on Tuesday due to reconditioning.

We have more from the Southwest Division:

  • Some Mavericks fans are lobbying for Reggie Bullock to be inserted in the lineup, but Dorian Finney-Smith has stepped up his game as of late, Brad Townsend of the Dallas Morning News writes. Finney-Smith had a season-high 15 points, seven rebounds, three steals and three assists against San Antonio on Friday. “When you take your mind off the shooting, it kind of takes the pressure away,” he said. “I just wanted to go out there with a lot of energy and shoot the ball with confidence — and worry about [shooting percentage] less.” Finney-Smith, who added eight points against Denver on Monday, will be a free agent after the season.
  • Pelicans first-year Willie Green has kept a consistent message despite the team’s struggles, Scott Kushner of the New Orleans Times-Picayune writes. Green has emphasized effort, relentlessness and competitiveness, and the players have remained in his corner. “Willie has the ultimate trust in me to go out there and play my game and play with confidence,” Josh Hart said.
  • Maxi Kleber is “progressing” from his left oblique strain, Mavericks coach Jason Kidd told Callie Caplan of the Dallas Morning News (Twitter link) and other media members. He has begun doing on-court drills but he’s not doing any contact yet. He suffered the injury on October 31.

Trade Rumors: Finney-Smith, Gordon, Fournier, Holmes, Herro

Teams have checked in on Mavericks forward Dorian Finney-Smith, though it’s uncertain if he’s available, Brad Townsend of the Dallas Morning News tweets. His recent uptick in play, plus his very affordable contract ($4MM this season and next), has increased interest in him.

As Townsend explains (Twitter link), if the Mavericks want to make a run at a player like Aaron Gordon, Norman Powell or John Collins, Finney-Smith would likely have to be included in any deal, along with perhaps Jalen Brunson and draft picks. However, Dallas can’t offer a first-rounder earlier than 2025, which makes it difficult for it to make a major move.

We have more on the trade front:

  • The Celtics are considered the frontrunners to acquire Gordon, multiple sources told The Action Network’s Matt Moore. The Magic are expected to continue to take offers up until Thursday’s deadline. The Nuggets, Trail Blazers and Mavericks are also in the running but Boston has offered two first-round picks and the other contenders for Gordon haven’t done that. It’s assumed there will be some protections on those picks. Evan Fournier could also go to Boston in a separate deal. The Celtics would send a player — the Magic prefer Marcus Smart — and the two picks, using their $28.5MM traded player exception as part of the deal.
  • Richaun Holmes has become a top trade target for multiple teams, ESPN’s Jordan Schultz tweets. It would take a sizable offer to pry him away from the Kings, Schultz adds. H0lmes has expressed his contentment with his current team. He had 17 points and 16 rebounds against Cleveland on Monday.
  • While the Heat could make a major move, they appear unwilling to part with Tyler Herro, according to another Schultz tweet. Miami considers Herro an essential part of the future and is a favorite of team president Pat Riley, so Schultz would be shocked if the second-year guard is moved.

Southwest Notes: Winslow, Spurs, Van Gundy, Finney-Smith

Justise Winslow was thrilled to be back on the court Saturday night, making his debut for the Grizzlies and playing for the first time since January 8, 2020. Although he started slowly, missing his first nine shots from the field, Winslow got more comfortable as the game went on and finished with nine points and seven rebounds in 21 minutes.

“I’ve been looking forward to this day for a long time,” Winslow said (video link from the Memphis Commercial Appeal). “I was excited, a lot of nerves, to be honest, but just being out there competing was a lot of fun. In the first half, I was just trying to get that first bucket, you know, a little excited. But once I settled down, settled into my game, I felt pretty comfortable out there. But a lot of praise to this organization, helped me get back out there, and my teammates. They kept me very confident while I was out there playing.”

Winslow was sidelined with a hip injury when Memphis acquired him at last year’s trade deadline. The pandemic prevented his projected return in March, and he suffered a left hip displacement during the summer that he’s just recovering from.

Looking ahead, Winslow could be a valuable contributor to the Grizzlies’ reserve unit as a shot creator, slasher and perimeter defender, notes Evan Barnes of The Commercial Appeal.

There’s more from the Southwest Division:

  • With the Spurs in the middle of an unexpected break due to COVID-19, Jeff McDonald of The San Antonio Express-News talks to other coaches who have guided their teams through the same experience. San Antonio hasn’t played in a week after four players tested positive for the virus. The team is set to resume its season Wednesday at Oklahoma City if enough players are available. “It’s as mentally challenging as anything I’ve ever had to deal with,” Wizards coach Scott Brooks said. “… There’s nothing I can take from a past experience or even another coach’s past experience to be able to navigate through it. It’s something nobody has had to do.”
  • Pelicans coach Stan Van Gundy doesn’t believe youth should be an excuse for a fourth-quarter meltdown Friday against Phoenix, according to Scott Kushner of NOLA.com. New Orleans was outscored 41-12 as a big lead slipped away. “A lot of teams in this league have quarters like that,” Van Gundy said. “I’ll never throw the young card out there. We’re a basketball team with really talented people, and we didn’t get the job done in the fourth quarter.”
  • Getting back on the court after a week-long break will be a relief for Mavericks forward Dorian Finney-Smith, writes Callie Caplan of The Dallas Morning News. After testing positive for COVID-19 and spending two weeks in a Denver hotel last month, Finney was among the many who lost power this week amid freezing conditions in Texas.