Blockbuster deals are a favorite to be discussed within NBA circles and fans, and today at TheSportster, we’ve come up with 15 unexpected trades that work well for both teams involved. Whether it be a superstar for superstar trade, such as the 3 team trade that sent Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen to the Celtics, an unhappy superstar being traded, such as Paul George and Carmelo Anthony, or a more modest trade, which silently works wonders for the teams involved, each trade on this list is sure to shake up the NBA. Today’s superstars, including Anthony Davis and DeMarcus Cousins, have to deal with trade rumors and scenarios all year long. As Davis pointed out, the Celtics traded Isaiah Thomas, the guy who played the day after his sister unfortunately passed and led the Celtics to the Conference Finals, who was traded with no mercy, so it’s possible any superstar not named LeBron James could be traded at any point.
When creating this list, we considered all possible trades from all possible angles, large and small. We aimed to find potential blockbuster trades that still made sense for the teams to make, otherwise, you’d see players such as LeBron James and Kevin Durant featured on this list. The NBA frequently will have trades come out of the blue that no one expects, or for superstars requesting to be traded that no one would’ve thought (See - Kyrie Irving), so situations such as that were considered as well. If there is a trade you agree/disagree with, feel free to leave a comment below.
15 DeMarcus Cousins To The Wizards (For Otto Porter, Marcin Gortat, And A 2018 1st Round Pick)
DeMarcus Cousins, before and after his trade to the Pelicans, is always at the top of every NBA fans potential trades list. Boogie always finds himself in trade talks, and that trend has continued in 2018. While the Pelicans have gone against the fold of the modern NBA and have the two best big men in the NBA alongside each other, and right now, are a playoff team, they likely won’t be able to contend against the Warriors, Spurs, or Rockets in the West due to the lack of Guard or Wing star power. Cousins to the Wizards makes a lot of sense, Aside from the obvious Cousins and Wall team up, the Wizards get an All-Star big to complete their big 3, and the Pelicans get a young wing with potential and a solid pick to have in the draft.
14 Dennis Schroder To The Suns (For Tyler Ulis, Dragan Bender, and a 2018 2nd round pick)
While Dennis Schroder is putting up great numbers for the Hawks, at roughly 18 points and 7 assists a night, his ceiling is not clear for the Hawks. Defensively, Schroder does not appear to have much value, and while his offensive production is solid, he isn’t the most efficient player or a guy you can picture being the centerpiece of a championship contending team. Schroder, who turns 25 soon, is also 2+ years older than the rest of the Hawks core such as John Collins and Taureun Prince, so it is important for the Hawks to get players in that age range. The Hawks acquire Tyler Ulis, a young guard who at his ceiling could be a starting caliber play maker, Dragan Bender, a guy who fits the mold of a modern big, however his ceiling is unknown, and a 2nd round pick. The Suns get a starting PG on a good contract who will create an All-Star level back court with Devin Booker.
13 Blake Griffin To The Thunder (For Carmelo Anthony, Terrance Ferguson, and 2018 1st round pick)
Blake Griffin is a guy not typically found in trade talks, however with Chris Paul having left for Houston and DeAndre Jordan in trade talks, it appear it’s time for the Clippers to consider tearing the roster down and attempting to rebuild. Blake Griffin has reached his ceiling as an NBA player, and if he wants to win, a hometown reunion in OKC makes a ton of sense. Carmelo gets out of a situation where he isn’t being utilized to his best, and Blake Griffin gets to go to a situation where he can contribute his talents now for a team that wants to win now. The Clippers also get a young athletic wing in Terrance Ferguson, and a 1st round pick. Blake Griffin will fit in nicely and quickly with the Thunder, as he gets one of the best passers in the NBA, Russell Westbrook, to pass to him, and is paired with a big similar to DeAndre Jordan, who he found great success with.
12 Mike Conley To The Nuggets (For Jamal Murray, Kenneth Faried, and a 2019 1st round pick)
The Nuggets are a team constantly found in trade rumors involving point guards of any kind, such as the recent Eric Bledsoe trade. With this trade, the Nuggets get a nice, underrated, all-around point guard who plays at an All Star level, and the Grizzlies get a nice young guard who provides valuable shooting and a future pick who will contribute to their rebuild. Conley will contribute to a Nuggets team who is trying to win now, as seen by the acquisition of Paul Millsap this off-season, and possible patches their only weakness, point guard. While it might be hard for Grizzlies fans to see Conley go, it is time for them to rebuild, as they just fired a promising coach in Fizdale and have one of the worst records in the NBA despite having Conley and Marc Gasol.
11 DeAndre Jordan To The Cavaliers (For Tristan Thompson and the 2018 Nets Pick)
The Cavaliers, at this point, are basically run by the player-GM LeBron James. If LeBron tells the front office he is interested in DeAndre Jordan, they will do everything they can to get him. DeAndre Jordan would complete the Cavaliers starting lineup, and would pair extremely well alongside all-star stretch four Kevin Love. DeAndre Jordan would not only add an All-Defensive level of talent to the team, but would also give the Cavaliers a much better chance versus the Warriors, should they meet again in the Finals. The Clippers are a team on verge of not making the playoffs, and are most likely willing to trade some of their assets for future pieces, especially if that includes a pick which will be as high as the Nets pick, and this draft, nearly guarantees a franchise cornerstone.
10 Nikola Mirotic To The Jazz (For Derrick Favors)
Before the season began, Nikola Mirotic was given a facial fracture from his teammate, Bobby Portis. This trade will allow for the Bulls to dispose of any chemistry issues those two may have, and while the Bulls have won some since the return of Mirotic, the development of their younger pieces, such as Lauri Marakkanen, is important, and with Mirotic gone, Lauri will be able to play a large amount of minutes. The Jazz, with this trade, get rid of a questionable fit at the PF spot with Derrick Favors, and get a solid starting caliber forward to pair alongside Rudy Gobert. The Bulls can let Derrick Favors play his natural position, Center, and not clog minutes at the Power Forward spot.
9 Hassan Whiteside To The Bucks (For Jabari Parker, John Henson, and D.J. Wilson)
The Heat began this season looking to contend in the East. Aside from LeBron's led Cavaliers, the East appeared reasonably weak and Miami believed they could reach the Conference Finals. However, the magical team that ended last season has not appeared this season. The Heat are below average, and don't have much room for growth. Hassan Whiteside is in his prime, Goran Dragic is past his prime, and Dion Waiters appears to have also reached his climax. This trade allows for the Heat to get rid of a large contract for a guy you can't build a championship team around, and acquire young talent with Jabari and Wilson who they can look to involve in their future. The Bucks, as shown by the Bledsoe trade, are a young team which still wants to win now, and borderline forms a big four with Bledsoe, Middleton, Giannis, and Whiteside.
8 Anthony Davis To The Celtics (For Al Horford, Jayson Tatum, 2018 Lakers Pick, 2020 1st round pick, and a 2019 2nd round pick)
The biggest blockbuster on this list, Anthony Davis to the Celtics is a dream of NBA fans everywhere, especially those of the Celtics. While they would get rid of valuable picks, Al Horford, and Jayson Tatum, they get arguably one of the best duos in the NBA which is built to last. As both players are 25 and younger, Kyrie and Davis will dominate for a while. The Celtics get to continue their younger approach and also directly compete with the Cavaliers. The Pelicans are in a similar situation to the Cavaliers of the 00s. While LeBron was consistently able to lead them to the playoffs, they did not win because LeBron did not have the supporting cast needed. The Pelicans can avoid a similar situation with Davis by trading him to the Celtics, where they get valuable picks and a future star in Tatum.
7 George Hill To The Nuggets (For Kenneth Faried and a 2nd round pick)
George Hill has expressed to the media that he is unhappy in Sacramento. He isn't winning, he shares minutes with young stud De'Aaron Fox, and unfortunately just isn't in the best situation. George Hill, with this trade, would get traded to a team that he would be needed on, would win games, and would play with established veterans, like Millsap, and young players, like Jokic and Harris. The Kings, due to Hill expressing dissatisfaction, don't have much leverage in this trade, and this is most likely the best they could get for Hill. Faried finally gets to part ways with Denver, and the Kings get a 2nd round pick, which could be useful.
6 Paul George To The Lakers (For Julius Randle, Jordan Clarkson, and a 2nd round pick)
Paul George has said multiple times that he is very interested in going to play for his hometown team, the Los Angeles Lakers, and it is extremely likely he ends up there one way or another, whether via trade or free agency. The Thunder, with this trade, at least get something back for Paul George, who is likely to leave, and the Lakers get a superstar who absolutely wants to play for them, a win-win for both teams. Randle has shown that he isn't happy in L.A., and Clarkson is a nice young guard who could support the Thunder in a bench role. Of all the trades listed, this one is most likely to happen, so don't be surprised if you see the news of George being traded to the Lakers.
5 Kent Bazemore To The Pistons (For Jon Leuer, Reggie Bullock, and a 2nd round pick)
The Hawks, who have Bazemore on a bad contract, look to get rid of him as he doesn't really fit their rebuild. However, his contract prevents them from getting any amazing deals for him. This trade is most likely one of the better deals the Hawks could get for Bazemore, and would take this trade due to the pick involved. Any pick helps the Hawks, and getting rid of an older, bad contract helps for the future as well. The Pistons get rid of a bad contract as well, however not as long as Bazemore's, and get an athletic wing which can help them now. ATL fans might be sad to see fan favorite Bazemore go, but this trade will end up helping both teams.
4 Kyle Lowry To The Spurs (For DeJounte Murray, Kyle Anderson, and a 2nd round pick)
The Spurs are a team not typically known to make big trades or changes throughout the season, but getting a guy of Kyle Lowry's caliber would be a huge step for the Spurs. Not only would Lowry give the Spurs a defensive guard who can guard Curry, Westbrook, and Paul, but it would also complete their big 3, and once Kawhi returns to form and Aldridge keeps up his great play, the Spurs have a deadly true which is ready to compete in the West. The Raptors, as good as they look, simply cannot compete with the Cavaliers and Celtics, and look to begin their rebuild by acquiring young guard and wing, respectively, Murray and Anderson, as well as a nice pick they could potentially draft a backup with.
3 Derrick Rose And Iman Shumpert To The Spurs (For Danny Green and a 1st round pick)
Derrick Rose hasn't exactly had the season he imagined with the Cavaliers this season, and the Cavaliers, with Isaiah Thomas back, don't necessarily need Rose in the lineup in order to compete with the best. With this trade, the Spurs get a nice athletic guard to pair with Kawhi and Aldridge, and the Cavaliers get a nice wing that'll fit in any small ball lineup and a solid pick. This trade would tremendously help out both of these contenders, providing scoring for the Spurs and defense for the Cavaliers, and it would be interesting to see the effect should these teams meet in the Finals.
2 Kemba Walker To The Knicks (For Frank Ntilikina, Joakim Noah, and a 1st round pick)
This would be an unexpected trade to your average NBA fan, but Kemba Walker trade rumors have began to circulate within NBA groups and discussions. The Hornets, who came in expecting to possibly win their division and have a solid seed in the playoffs, are under performing, and this is despite Kemba playing like an elite guard every night alongside Dwight Howard and Nicolas Batum. The Hornets don't appear to be built to last, and it's best if they test to see what they can get for Kemba before it is too late. With this trade, the Knicks get a guy who they can pair with Porzingis and trust he will get him the ball, and the Hornets get a nice, future starting PG with Frank and a 1st round pick which will be valuable in the draft.
1 Marc Gasol To The Raptors (For Jonas Valanciunas, C.J. Miles, and a 2018 1st round pick)
Ever since the Grizzlies had the situation with Fizdale and Gazol, rumblings of a Gasol trade have began. Although the Grizzlies are typically a playoff team led by Gasol, this season, that hasn't been the case. The Grizzlies have been losing, badly, and remain near the bottom of the west standings, and unless they believe they can comeback in this difficult west, they should look to trade Gasol before he wants to leave. This trade gives the Grizzlies a nice young center in Valanciunas, and a 1st round pick which they can use to get a nice young player in this draft class. The Raptors get a piece which will help them out immediately, and potentially beat LeBron in the playoffs.