Julius Randle trades for De’Aaron Fox, CJ McCollum suitors, Portland Trail Blazers, Dallas Mavericks, New Orleans Pelicans, Toronto Raptors, Marcus Smart, Minnesota Timberwolves

A big trade has already taken place this week and several more will come before the next Friday (AEDT) deadline.

Keep up to date with all the latest whispers in our NBA rumor mill.

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‘PERCEPTION’ AFFECTING RANDLE’S VALUE

Sun 06 Feb

Sunday February 6

Julius Randle considers the recent trade rumors surrounding him as flimsy as garlands.

After Friday’s practice at UCLA, Randle asked this reporter about who was responsible for an alleged push by Knicks management to trade him before the Feb. 10 deadline.

“Who reported it? Who reported it?” Randle repeated over and over.

The NY Post reported after last month’s Cam Reddish transaction that management is considering everything on the table after hoarding another asset. A report from SNY has confirmed that the Knicks are open to trading the former Lakers lottery pick, but only for a significant package.

ESPN’s Brian Windhorst confirmed multiple reports, including one from The Post, that Sacramento point guard De’Aaron Fox is on the Knicks’ radar, with Randle the only pawn that would make sense in such a deal.

The idea swirled around social media like the waves of the Pacific Ocean.

“It sounds like gossip to me,” Randle said before facing the Lakers on Saturday night.

Indeed, Randle’s trade rumors seem exaggerated, but it’s worth considering what Randle’s trade value is now that he hasn’t been named to the 2022 All-Star Game. He’s 27 – the start of his early years.

“Not now,” an NBA general manager told the Post when asked if Randle has decent trade value.

Another Western Conference personnel manager said Randle’s entire career is a problem. Randle never played in a playoff game until his seventh season last year. But if superstars are made in the playoffs, the 6-foot-8 freight train came very small against Atlanta last spring.

“I think you could consider last season an anomaly,” a Western Conference personnel manager said. “This season is more like his first six seasons.”

Randle’s numbers aren’t bad at all — he entered Saturday averaging 18.5 points, 9.9 rebounds and 5.1 assists. But the efficiency is far from 2020-21.

Randle’s field goal percentage is at 41.4%, his career low (not including his one-game rookie year). Randle’s 3-point percentage is the most noticeably down – from 41.1% to 30.3%.

“You go through phases,” Randle told UCLA. “You shoot the ball well, you don’t shoot the ball well. It’s basketball. Nothing has changed for me.”

But perception has changed, and it can also shape a player’s value, both to team owners and to analytics.

Randle’s thumbs-down gesture to Knicks fans (the worst thing a professional athlete could do), his persistent haggling with umpires, and the media boycott don’t look good for those signing the checks.

Randle is under contract with the Knicks through 2026 (Photo by Rich Graessle/Getty Images)Source: FOX SPORTS

Although opposing coaches have great respect for Randle charging their defense to stop him, the NY Post also reported that Tom Thibodeau has struggled to coach Randle this season to be more of a selfless player. Some in the organization wonder if his new contract extension made him feel like he had to do too much.

“That’s low business value,” another NBA scout said. “He didn’t come across as a good teammate. He played selfish. His contract is not a problem. Perception is.”

Randle has signed a maximum contract extension of $117m (A$165m) but is nowhere near earning the maximum money next season. It should help. When Randle was faced with the contract dilemma last August, he knew he could have waited until 2022 and signed a four-year, $200 million deal.

At the time, people around Randle said he didn’t want to wait because he hoped to give the Knicks the chance to sign players in 2022. However, Knicks president Leon Rose, who hasn’t spoken to journalists since September, still has no ceiling. place this summer.

“I just trust them, man,” Randle said of Rose and top adviser William Wesley. “I think they’re doing a great job. That’s part of the reason why we spoke this summer, when I signed my extension. I trust them.”

It would seem illogical for Rose-Wesley to drop Randle shortly after overtime until he had increased his trade value. Considering Randle was an All-Star and named All-NBA Second Team in 2021, his value should be higher.

“Randle was as good as he will ever be last season,” added another scout.

“It will never be better than this – only worse.”

That said, could Randle go for a player with Fox’s young advantage, who is three years younger than Randle, or Detroit forward Jerami Grant? A league executive thinks it’s not impossible adding a first-round pick in Randle, but it could say more about Fox and Grant’s declining status.

Fox, the Sacramento Kentucky point guard, is shooting just 24.8 percent from 3, suffered a knee injury and did not win in the NBA.

If the Knicks actually leave Randle, it will be because of a giant belief that Obi Toppin can fulfill as a starting forward. However, Thibodeau was not a big fan of Toppin.

Unless Randle’s trade was a directive from the ever-eager James Dolan, it’s hard to imagine Randle ending up anywhere else on this five-game West Coast trip.

Dolan recently took the hit for Randle, a CAA client, for not speaking to the media, absorbing a $25,000 fine. For the most part, Randle spoke when asked and showed some scuffle Friday when the rumors surfaced, chiding this reporter: “You’re just making stuff up,” he said.

“I just think he’s awesome,” Randle said of Dolan. “I spoke to him, of course. He’s our team owner, so I have a relationship with him. I think he supports us enormously as players. I appreciate it.

“I trust Wes, trust Leon, trust Scott [Perry], trust Jim, everyone. I feel like they will do what is best for the team. I will ride with him however they go. ”

-This article was first published in the NY Post and reproduced with permission

Boban called in to repair faulty rim | 00:47

MAVS, PELICANS INTERESTED IN CJ

The Dallas Mavericks have joined the New Orleans Pelicans in claiming Portland’s CJ McCollum.

According to Michael Scotto of Hoops Hype, several teams are expecting the Blazers’ next move to involve McCollum after Anfernee Simons emerges.

It comes after Portland traded Robert Covington and Norman Powell to the LA Clippers on Saturday in a five-man trade to essentially clear payday by helping revamp the roster around Damian Lillard.

“With the emergence of Simons and the sale of veterans like Powell and Covington, rival league executives believe the Trail Blazers will move CJ McCollum before the trade deadline or this offseason as Portland continues to reshape its roster around of franchise star Damian Lillard Several teams, including the New Orleans Pelicans, Dallas Mavericks and others, are expected to trade for McCollum, who owes $69.13 million over the past next two seasons,” Scotto wrote.

Could McCollum be the next traded Blazer? (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)Source: FOX SPORTS

McCollum, who spent nine seasons in Portland to round out the team’s star backcourt alongside Lillard, is averaging 20.6 points per game over 35 games this season.

According to ESPN’s Brian Windhorst, the Pelicans are “very actively looking to buy” in the trade market and have made Josh Hart available.

It comes as they look to push towards game qualification and surround Zion Williamson with as much talent as possible in the long run.

It is believed that in addition to being interested in McCollum, the Pelicans have also held trade talks with the Atlanta Hawks over Kevin Huerter, the Houston Rockets over Eric Gordon and the Sacramento Kings over De’Aaron Fox.

RAPTORS LOOKING AT CENTERS OF STARS

The Toronto Raptors are reportedly looking for an established big man.

Michael Scotto of Hoops Hype reports that the Raptors are targeting multiple centers ahead of the trade deadline, including Jakob Poeltl, Myles Turner, Robert Williams, Nicolas Claxton and Jusuf Nurkic.

Toronto, which is in the midst of a five-game winning streak to move up to seventh in the Eastern Conference, spun Pascal Siakam, Chris Boucher, Precious Achiuwa and Khem Birch to its fifth-place finish but misses out. a great seasoned man.

Raptors target Poeltl (Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images)Source: FOX SPORTS

“Toronto has all of its forward-looking first-round picks that can be used as trade bait for a potential starting-caliber center. The Raptors flirted with the idea of ​​moving a first-round pick to buy out Poeltl, HoopsHype has learned,” Scotto wrote.

NBA Insider Marc Stein reported San Antonio wanted a first-round pick and quality player in any deal for Poeltl, who is on a reasonable $26.3 million, while Scotto revealed the Pacers are looking for two picks first round or a promising one. young player and first round for Turner.

‘DEFINENTLEY’ WOLVES TRY TO LAND SMART

The Minnesota Timberwolves made the playoffs this season but haven’t finished trying to improve their roster.

Darren Wolfson of 5 Eyewitness News and @SkorNorth reports the Wolves are “definitely” trying to trade for Boston’s Marcus Smart, although he won’t come cheap.

Minnesota is thought to have to give up a first-round pick Where Jaden McDaniels in addition to Malik Beasley to close the deal.

The Timberwolves would apparently like the idea of ​​pairing Smart alongside D’Angelo Russell in their backcourt, with Anthony Edwards and Karl-Anthony Towns up front.

While Smart’s averages of 11.5 points per game and 5.5 assists aren’t obvious, he’s one of the best perimeter defensemen in the league and a strong general on the ground.

Also, when Smart, Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown share the field together, the Celtics have a net rating of +11.6.

Smart, who signed a four-year, $76.5 million extension with Boston that begins next season, is sure to be targeted by multiple parties ahead of the trade deadline.