Hoops Rumors Polls

Poll: Should Suns Include Josh Jackson In Kyrie Offer?

Although the Suns weren’t one of the teams named on Kyrie Irving‘s alleged list of preferred landing spots when he made his trade request earlier this offseason, Phoenix has been frequently mentioned as a possible trade partner for the Cavaliers. The Suns possess a win-now veteran (Eric Bledsoe), a young potential star (Josh Jackson), extra future draft picks, and an ability to absorb an extra contract or two, making them a good fit for the Cavs.

Still, the two sides haven’t found common ground yet, and Jackson – this year’s No. 4 overall pick – appears to be a point of contention. Last month, reports indicated that the Suns were unwilling to include Jackson in an offer for Irving, telling the rookie forward that he wouldn’t be going anywhere. The team reportedly prefers to include last year’s fourth overall pick Dragan Bender.

Jackson has been cited as a primary target for the Cavaliers as they explore their options with Irving. LeBron James himself reportedly asked about Cleveland’s chances of landing Jackson, who was named this week as one of several young players the Cavs were focused on — Kristaps Porzingis, Jayson Tatum, and Jamal Murray were among the others.

If the Suns were willing to include Jackson, a package of the rookie and Bledsoe would be a starting point, though previous reports have indicated Phoenix would need to give up a little more too — perhaps in the form of a draft pick or taking back a player like Channing Frye or Iman Shumpert.

Kevin O’Connor of The Ringer took a closer look at the situation on Tuesday, making cases for why the Suns should and shouldn’t be willing to put Jackson into an offer for Irving. Ultimately, O’Connor’s “bad cop” – who argued for including Jackson – won out, with The Ringer scribe suggesting that an unproven rookie with some question marks shouldn’t be a sticking point in a deal for a legit star.

What do you think? Are the Suns overvaluing Jackson, or are they right to refuse to include him in an offer for Irving? Does it make sense for Phoenix to hope that the Cavs will accept other players in Jackson’s place, and to move on if that bid falls short?

Vote below in our poll and then jump into the comment section to share your thoughts.

Trade Rumors app users, click here to vote.

Poll: Which Team Will Be NBA’s Worst In 2017/18?

Earlier this week, ESPN had a panel of 44 experts pick the Eastern and Western Conference winners for the 2017/18 season, along with the eventual NBA champion. The results were familiar and unsurprising — ESPN projects the Cavaliers and the Warriors to meet in the NBA Finals for a fourth consecutive season, with Golden State winning its third title in four years.

While it’s possible a contender like the Celtics, Spurs, or Rockets will upend the established order, there may be more potential for a crowded field and a dramatic race at the other end of the standings. ESPN also published its first 2018 mock draft this week, which included teams picking in specific positions based on projections for 2017/18 records.

ESPN has the Bulls picking at No. 1, followed by the Celtics (via Nets), Hawks, Suns, Kings, Magic, and Knicks, suggesting those are the teams expected to finish at the bottom of the NBA’s standings this season. A few of those clubs were cellar-dwellers last season as well, but ESPN anticipates teams like the Sixers, Lakers, and Timberwolves will improve and get out of that group, while teams like the Bulls and Hawks are expected to drop off significantly after making the playoffs last season.

It’s not hard to see where those predictions come from — Chicago and Atlanta both lost All-Stars and began rebuilding this offseason, while Minnesota acquired one of those All-Stars (Jimmy Butler) and Philadelphia and L.A. fortified their respective rosters in both the draft and free agency. As for Brooklyn, Phoenix, Sacramento, Orlando, and New York, none of those clubs made the sort of summer splash that would necessarily result in a major jump in the standings.

What do you think? Do you expect one of those clubs to be the NBA’s worst team in 2017/18, or is there another team you believe will end up in the league’s basement? Vote below in our poll, then jump into the comment section to share your thoughts!

Trade Rumors app users, click here to vote.

Poll: Which NBA Team Has Had Best Offseason?

Over the last eight days, we’ve presented a series of polls asking Hoops Rumors readers which team in each division has had the best offseason. Starting with the Atlantic last Thursday and running through the Pacific yesterday, we’ve covered all six divisions.

In some cases, the results of those polls have revealed that a particular division didn’t do well as a whole this summer. For instance, voting in the Central has placed the Bucks in first, despite the fact that Milwaukee has essentially stood pat after having conducted an unusual search for a new GM that saw the team’s co-owners on different pages. While the Bucks’ offseason was underwhelming, it wasn’t viewed as a net negative, like the Pacers‘, Bulls‘, and Cavaliers‘ summers.

Other divisions fell on the other end of the spectrum, with multiple teams worthy of consideration after a successful summer. In the Northwest, for example, the Thunder have received less than 18% of the vote despite acquiring Paul George. But that’s only because the Timberwolves‘ offseason was considered even stronger, picking up more than 72% of the votes.

In today’s poll, we’re asking which team had the best offseason overall. While the options listed here are mostly based on your top picks in those divisional polls, I’ve also used my discretion to include some runners-up and to eliminate a poll winner in the Bucks, who probably don’t belong in the league-wide conversation for the best offseason.

What do you think? Which NBA team has had the best offseason so far? Vote below and then jump into the comment section to share your thoughts. Is your pick not on our list? Let us know!

Trade Rumors app users, click here to vote.

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Poll: Which Pacific Team Had Best Offseason?

It almost seems unfair that a team with a 67-15 record in the regular season and a 16-1 postseason mark could subsequently have one of the NBA’s offseasons too, but Golden State may have achieved that feat.

Heading into the summer, the Warriors knew Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant would be back, but none of the team’s other free agents were a lock to return. When the dust settled, the Dubs had re-signed virtually all their notable FAs, including Andre Iguodala, Shaun Livingston, Zaza Pachulia, David West, and JaVale McGee. The team even fortified its bench by adding Nick Young and Omri Casspi in free agency, and Jordan Bell in the draft.

While Golden State’s summer moves were impressive, some of their division rivals had very strong summers too. The Lakers, led by a new-look front office, drafted a potential franchise point guard in Lonzo Ball, dumped Timofey Mozgov‘s mega-contract, and improbably landed Kentavious Caldwell-Pope in free agency.

Meanwhile, the Kings – like the Lakers – certainly won’t challenge Golden State for Pacific supremacy right away, but Sacramento’s offseason’s moves featured an impressive mix of roster additions. Not only did the Kings sign a few veterans – George Hill, Zach Randolph, and Vince Carter – but the team also added several youngsters with big upside, including De’Aaron Fox, Bogdan Bogdanovic, Justin Jackson, Harry Giles, and Frank Mason.

The Clippers suffered the biggest single-player loss of any Pacific team as Chris Paul headed to Houston, but L.A. recovered nicely to retool its roster. Patrick Beverley, Lou Williams, and multiple young big men arrived in the CP3 trade, and the Clips managed to add potential starters like Danilo Gallinari and Euroleague star Milos Teodosic in free agency. The team also re-signed Blake Griffin when many NBA observers expected him to explore other options.

One of those teams that may have been eyeing Griffin was the Suns, but Phoenix ultimately opted to lay low and be patient with its rebuild rather than pursuing a top free agent. That made for a quiet summer, but it’s probably the right long-term move, and it’s not as if the Suns were totally inactive. The club landed one of the top players on its draft board in Josh Jackson and re-signed free agent big man Alan Williams to a team-friendly three-year deal.

What do you think? Which Pacific team has had the best offseason so far? Weigh in below with your vote and then jump into the comment section to share your thoughts.

Trade Rumors app users, click here to vote.

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Poll: Which Southeast Team Had Best Offseason?

For multiple teams in the Southeast, the 2017 offseason was more about retaining their own players than going out and making a major splash via trade or free agency. That was especially true for the reigning division champs in Washington.

Not only did the Wizards match Brooklyn’s four-year, maximum salary offer sheet for Otto Porter — the club also completed another four-year, maximum salary extension, locking up John Wall far beyond the remaining two years on his current contract. Washington also made other minor changes to its roster, adding Jodie Meeks and Tim Frazier, but the team’s major moves involved keeping its current core intact.

The same can be said about the Heat, who pursued Gordon Hayward, but missed out and quickly shifted their focus back to their own free agents, finalizing new long-term contracts with James Johnson and Dion Waiters. Miami also made the biggest investment in the division on an outside free agent, striking a four-year, $45.6MM deal with Kelly Olynyk, which could be worth even more via incentives.

The Hawks brought back Ersan Ilyasova and Mike Muscala on new deals, but opted not to re-sign their top free agent, letting Paul Millsap go to Denver. The move was one of several made by Atlanta that will re-shape the roster for 2017/18. Dewayne Dedmon, Miles Plumlee, and Marco Belinelli are among the newly-added Hawks, while Tim Hardaway, Dwight Howard, Thabo Sefolosha, and Mike Dunleavy are a few of the players who left Atlanta this summer.

The Hornets were on the other end of a major trade with Atlanta, landing Howard in exchange for Belinelli and Plumlee. The cap-strapped Hornets didn’t have a lot of flexibility to make upgrades, but the additions of Howard, Malik Monk, and Michael Carter-Williams are intriguing moves for a club that underperformed in 2016/17.

Meanwhile, the Magic didn’t make any big-money investments in free agency, but landed Jonathon Simmons, Shelvin Mack, Arron Afflalo, and Marreese Speights on affordable deals, and added a tantalizing athlete in Jonathan Isaac in the draft.

What do you think? Which Southeast team has had the best offseason so far? Vote in our poll and then head to the comment section to share your thoughts.

Trade Rumors app users, click here to vote.

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Poll: Which Southwest Team Had Best Offseason?

In the days and weeks leading up to free agency, Chris Paul was frequently linked to the Spurs, who were viewed as the most likely landing spot for the star point guard if he left the Clippers. However, the Rockets were the team that swooped in before the free agent period even began to acquire Paul, sending seven players and a draft pick to L.A. in the deal that landed CP3 in Houston.

The Rockets‘ trade for Paul – along with the signing of P.J. Tucker – makes them an obvious pick for the Southwest team that had the best offseason, but the price for CP3 was steep, considering he was about to become an unrestricted free agent. Sixth Man of the Year finalist Lou Williams and All-Defensive First-Teamer Patrick Beverley were among the outgoing pieces in that deal, along with young big men Montrezl Harrell and Sam Dekker. Still, while the Rockets’ depth – particularly in the backcourt – may have taken a hit, pairing Paul with James Harden should make it worthwhile.

As for the Spurs, they ended up not clearing out cap room for a marquee outside free agent, opting instead to re-sign several of their own FAs, including Patty Mills, Pau Gasol, and Manu Ginobili. The club also made use of its exceptions to add Rudy Gay and Joffrey Lauvergne, though Jonathon Simmons and Dewayne Dedmon left for new teams.

Elsewhere in the division, the Pelicans entered the offseason virtually capped out, but made several interesting moves, including re-signing Jrue Holiday and adding Rajon Rondo, Ian Clark, and Frank Jackson to their backcourt.

While the Grizzlies didn’t make major changes to their core, several veterans moved on, with Zach Randolph and Vince Carter heading to Sacramento. Tony Allen – who is still on the open market – also appears unlikely to remain in Memphis. Restricted free agent JaMychal Green is a better bet to re-sign, and if he does, he’ll join new additions like Ben McLemore, Tyreke Evans, and Rade Zagorac.

Meanwhile, the Mavericks sat out of free agency for the first time in several years. However, despite the lack of big splashes, Dallas’ offseason looks like a successful one — the team managed to re-sign Dirk Nowitzki to a very modest contract, landed a very promising rookie point guard Dennis Smith Jr., and don’t appear to have major competition for RFA Nerlens Noel, which should make him a little more affordable than anticipated.

What do you think? Which Southwest team had the best offseason? Does the Rockets’ acquisition of Paul instantly give them the edge, or did another team’s summer moves impress you more?

Vote below, and jump into the comment section to share your thoughts!

Trade Rumors app users, click here to vote.

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Poll: Which Central Team Had Best Offseason?

When we asked last week which Atlantic and Northwest teams have enjoyed the best offseasons of 2017, there were a handful of teams deserving of consideration. Several of the 10 teams from those divisions landed star players or deftly maneuvered the salary cap to upgrade their rosters in other ways.

In the Central division, the candidates are a little less impressive.

The Bulls and Pacers were on the other end of two of those trades that sent All-Star players to Northwest teams, with the clubs trading away Jimmy Butler and Paul George, respectively. In both cases, the return left something to be desired — Chicago received Zach LaVine, Kris Dunn, and Lauri Markkanen, while the Pacers landed Victor Oladipo and Domantas Sabonis.

Indiana has at least has made some savvy moves in the weeks since the George trade, picking up Cory Joseph, Darren Collison, and Bojan Bogdanovic on affordable contracts, while the Bulls have only re-signed Cristiano Felicio and added Justin Holiday.

The defending Central – and Eastern – champions may join those two teams soon in having traded away an All-Star player, but for now Kyrie Irving remains with the Cavaliers. Cleveland’s offseason grade is probably incomplete until we see what the team does with Irving, but so far the Cavs’ summer moves have been somewhat underwhelming. The additions of players like Derrick Rose, Jeff Green, Jose Calderon, and Cedi Osman were solid, but they were hardly the sort of transformative moves the clubs envisioned heading into the offseason.

The up-and-coming Bucks showed signs last season suggesting they could be an Eastern Conference force within the next year or two, but with Greg Monroe and Spencer Hawes opting into their respective contracts, Milwaukee’s flexibility to make additions has been limited. Outside of re-signing Tony Snell, the Bucks have essentially been quiet in free agency — the team’s most notable additions came in the draft, when D.J. Wilson and Sterling Brown joined the roster.

Of the five Central teams, the Pistons have perhaps been the most active in adding roster reinforcements, though your view of their offseason may hinge on how you feel about Kentavious Caldwell-Pope. Detroit let its top restricted free agent walk, opting to replace him by signing Langston Galloway and trading Marcus Morris for Avery Bradley. Other minor moves for the Pistons included re-signing Reggie Bullock and adding Anthony Tolliver.

What do you think? Which of the Central division teams had the best offseason? Did any of these teams take positive steps forward with their summer moves? Vote below in our poll and then jump into the comment section to share your thoughts.

Trade Rumors app users, click here to vote.

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Poll: Northwest Division Winner

The Jazz made the leap last season, winning 51 games while taking home the Northwest Division crown. After an offseason of change, a repeat is far from certain. Utah lost Gordon Hayward in free agency, something that should knock them down in the standings. Kevin Pelton of ESPN.com projects the Jazz to take home under 45 wins next season.

Pelton predicts that the Wolves will win the division after they brought in 3-time All-Star Jimmy Butler this offseason. Minnesota added several other pieces in free agency, including Jeff Teague and Taj Gibson. Pelton has the Thunder placing second in the division with his model predicting OKC takes home 49.5 wins.

The statistician has the Nuggets finishing third in the division with Utah and Portland behind them. The mathematical model gives Denver 47.2 wins which puts them third in the division and seventh in the conference. Adding a proven veteran like Paul Millsap will certainly increase a team’s chances of making the postseason, something that the franchise hasn’t done in each of the last four seasons. The addition of Millsap, along with the progression of the team’s young nucleus, should also give the team a chance to steal the division’s crown and land a top-4 seed in the Western Conference.

What do you think? Which team will win out in what should be a tight race for the Northwest Division crown? Weigh in below with your vote and jump into the comment section to share your thoughts.

Poll: Best Rookie Point Guard Season

The 2017 NBA Draft was loaded with talented point guards, including first overall pick Markelle Fultz, No. 2 selection Lonzo Ball, and fellow lottery picks De’Aaron Fox, Frank Ntilikina, and Dennis Smith Jr. 

Fultz showed flashes of brilliance in the NBA Summer League amid overall inconsistent play before he ultimately injured his ankle in his Las Vegas debut. The 76ers guard was promptly shut down for the remainder of Summer League. This season, the rookie figures to be a regular fixture in the Philadelphia backcourt.

After dominating his freshman season at UCLA, Ball won Las Vegas Summer League MVP honors, racking up assists (9.3 APG) and steals (2.5 SPG), as well as points and rebounds. Although it is not clear whether Ball will start for the Lakers right out of the gate, he will certainly be the beneficiary of a hearty amount of playing time.

Fox is also expected to see his fair share of action this season, but averaged just 21.3 minutes per game in four Las Vegas Summer League games. Like Fultz and Ball, Fox exhibited tantalizing athleticism. The Kentucky product averaged a solid 11.8 points per contest and 3.0 assists. Fox’s 2.3 SPG were extremely impressive.

The Knicks drafted Ntilikina eighth overall because of his speed and agility. Last season, the point guard averaged just 15.5 minutes per game for Strasbourg in France but displayed tremendous promise and improved noticeably as a shooter. With D. Rose out of town, it appears as if the keys to Madison Square Garden are about to be Frank’s.

In six games in Las Vegas, Smith averaged 17.3 PPG, 4.8 RPG, and 4.2 APG, shooting 45.7% from the floor and electrifying with the occasional powerful dunk. The Mavericks prospect also tallied 2.2 SPG.

This brings us to today’s poll: Which of these point guards will have the best rookie season in 2017/18?

Poll: Which Northwest Team Had Best Offseason?

The Jazz took home the Northwest division crown in 2016/17, finishing with a 51-31 record despite having several key players miss time due to injuries. However, with Gordon Hayward heading from Utah to Boston this summer, and several other Northwest teams making impact moves, things look a little more wide open in the division as the 2017/18 season nears.

The Timberwolves struck first, acquiring Jimmy Butler in a blockbuster draft-day trade that sent Kris Dunn, Zach LaVine, and a draft pick to Chicago. Having traded for Butler, the Wolves continued to stock up on veterans in free agency, adding Jeff Teague, Taj Gibson, and Jamal Crawford to a young core that already features Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins.

With one All-Star Eastern forward headed to Minnesota, the Thunder worked quickly to snag another, reaching a deal with the Pacers that saw Paul George land in Oklahoma City. It was an impressive move by Sam Presti, who didn’t appear to have the assets necessary to make the winning bid for George. The team’s strong offseason continued in free agency, as OKC secured Patrick Patterson on a very affordable contract and re-signed standout defender Andre Roberson.

A third All-Star made the move from the Eastern Conference to the Northwest division when the Nuggets locked up Paul Millsap to a three-year contract in free agency. Denver lost longtime forward Danilo Gallinari, but the addition of Millsap creates a formidable frontcourt duo, as the former Hawk will be paired with Nikola Jokic.

The Trail Blazers have had a quiet offseason, but did make a few moves of note, drafting big men Zach Collins and Caleb Swanigan in June and then slicing their projected tax bill in a massive way by trading Allen Crabbe to the Nets.

Meanwhile, the defending division champs recovered nicely from losing Hayward and George Hill. The Jazz re-signed Joe Ingles, and Ricky Rubio, Thabo Sefolosha, Donovan Mitchell, Jonas Jerebko, and Ekpe Udoh are among the new additions who will contribute to the 2017/18 squad.

What do you think? Which Northwest team had the best offseason? Weigh in below with your vote and jump into the comment section to share your thoughts.

Trade Rumors app users, click here to vote.

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