HoopsHype’s Michael Scotto and Yossi Gozlan discuss Bradley Beal’s future and why the Wizards could go after Domantas Sabonis and Jerami Grant. Plus, how the Jazz could upgrade following the Joe Ingles ACL injury, Pelicans trade targets, why Dennis Schroeder could be a fit for the Bulls, along with Bucks updates on the latest edition of the HoopsHype podcast.
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:35 Washington Wizards
Scotto: Several people I’ve spoken to around the league believe the Wizards will look to go big-game hunting with the trade deadline coming up to keep Bradley Beal happy, and they could look to acquire Domantas Sabonis or Jerami Grant.
Beal and the Wizards are at a crossroads in a sense. The second half of the season is going to go a long way in determining if Beal will want to take a max extension with the Wizards or if he’s going to look to move on and try to win elsewhere. This year, he’s gotten more teammates involved. He’s averaging a career-high in assists (6.6) per game, even though his scoring has decreased, and he’s shooting a career-low 30 percent from three-point range.
Gozlan: I think the Wizards have what it takes to get Grant, but I also think they can get into the discussion to acquire a guy like Sabonis. They have some recent first-round picks like Deni Avdija, Corey Kispert, Rui Hachimura, and veterans like Kyle Kuzma and Spencer Dinwiddie. Their draft pick situation is a little complicated. They owe a 2023 first-rounder to Oklahoma City. It has protections in the lottery through 2026.
Beal will be eligible for a five-year $241 million deal with the Wizards. If he were to join another team, either through cap space or a sign-and-trade, the most he can get is four years, $179 million. The biggest difference is he can get that extra year if he re-signs with his full Bird Rights. If he’s considering moving on, now ideally would be the best time in a trade so he can keep his Bird Rights and maximize his earnings.
Scotto: Looking ahead, If Beal decides to move on this summer and the 76ers can’t get a deal done for James Harden, something along the lines of Beal for Ben Simmons and Tyrese Maxey could make sense for both teams. Both Beal and Joel Embiid train with Drew Hanlen.
The backcourt fit between Beal and Spencer Dinwiddie also hasn’t gone according to plan thus far. Dinwiddie was asked about being a leader for the Wizards, and I’m shortening the full quote here, but the sentences that stuck out to me were when he said, “I spoke up a little bit early on. It wasn’t necessarily welcomed.”
Here's video of Dinwiddie's comments. Question from @Tsaltas46 https://t.co/xkCSVaI1FE pic.twitter.com/y2iRJMBsxs
— Chase Hughes (@ChaseHughesNBCS) January 30, 2022
Gozlan: I think there are a handful of teams that can make sense for Dinwiddie. I could see Boston, Dallas, the Clippers, New Orleans, Cleveland, and New York are just a few that jump out to me. I’m higher on Dinwiddie than most, and I think there’s a good chance he will be better than this over time. He’s still barely removed from his ACL injury, so if he can be acquired at a reasonable price, other teams should jump on that.
9:01 Utah Jazz
Scotto: The torn ACL injury to Joe Ingles is a tough blow to the Utah Jazz in several ways. Utah has dangled Ingles and a first-round pick on the trade market in an effort to improve on the wing. That’s going back to the draft. Now, Ingles is out, and Utah essentially is in the same boat as Cleveland when it comes to having an expiring contract to move on the market with their first-round pick, but the player isn’t going to play.
Utah has discussed several wing options, including Harrison Barnes, Robert Covington, Josh Richardson, Josh Okogie, sources say. They’ve certainly done due diligence, and the mold of finding a defensive wing certainly appears to fit with all those names. There’s a commonality there.
Regarding Harrison Barnes, I’ve heard from executives around the league that Sacramento would like at least a first-round pick in any potential deal for him.
Utah has that, but the question is if Sacramento would be willing to take on Ingles when he can’t play or if they’d try to get someone like Bojan Bogdanovic. Though, I’m not sure Utah would want to pay that price for Barnes.
When Danny Ainge was in Boston, they had talks with the Sacramento Kings to try to acquire Barnes. Now that Ainge has shifted to the Utah Jazz, it appears that the eye for Barnes remains. I’ve said this on other podcasts and have always maintained that Ainge was brought there to make a trade to bolster the team… They’ve got to improve in the West, especially when you look at the Warriors and Suns.
Gozlan: I think the pressure meter has definitely climbed a few notches for Utah, and this injury to Ingles is definitely contributing to that. I’m sure before this, the Jazz kept their options open in terms of potentially trading some of their other role players. Now, they don’t really have much of a choice other than to trade Ingles and turn him into a healthy body and a role player.
While Utah’s potential offer of Ingles and a future first-round pick may not seem that appealing on the surface, I think there’s a lot of value in trading for any future first-round pick that’s far out. The earliest pick the Jazz can trade would be in 2026. No one knows where any team will be two years from now, let alone four. I think any team trading a role player or a decent starter for that pick could be getting a potentially very valuable pick. If anything, the perceived value of the pick can be used as a trade chip later.
15:17 New Orleans Pelicans
Scotto: The New Orleans Pelicans appear to be buyers heading into the trade deadline and have expressed interest in trading for several players, including Harrison Barnes, Robert Covington and Eric Gordon, league sources told HoopsHype.
Rival executives also believe Nickeil Alexander-Walker and Jaxson Hayes are both available for the right upgrade as well. According to multiple executives, the Pelicans are more willing to listen on moving Alexander-Walker than in the past.
Josh Hart is also a player to keep an eye on, thanks to his team-friendly contract, which is non-guaranteed next season, as noted on our Pelicans salary page. Some teams have liked him from afar. One of those teams is Atlanta.
Gozlan: I wrote in my trade guide last week that the Pelicans seem like buyers, and I can see them making big moves next week. They have some large tradeable salaries in Josh Hart and Tomas Satoransky and several young players like the ones you mentioned. I can see all of that potentially being consolidated for a player like Barnes, CJ McCollum, or with some of the draft picks they have, to even go after some of the best available players like Ben Simmons or Domantas Sabonis. They also have that big $17 million trade exception they can use to make an additional upgrade. This could allow them to absorb a player such as Covington, Marcus Morris, or Josh Richardson, to name a few.
19:32 Milwaukee Bucks
Scotto: Donte DiVincenzo has drawn considerable trade interest from teams around the league, sources told HoopsHype. Milwaukee isn’t going to move him unless they get a good young player or someone that’s going to help them win this season. The Bucks tried to extend both DiVincenzo and Grayson Allen before the deadline this season. Once Allen agreed to an extension and DiVincenzo didn’t, some around the league wondered if Milwaukee chose essentially to keep Allen over DiVincenzo long-term, but that’s not the case. Heading into the offseason, I’m told Milwaukee has an appetite for retaining both players, with DiVincenzo heading into restricted free agency on a $6.6 million qualifying offer.
Gozlan: They are probably going to be deep in the luxury tax again next season depending on several factors, which could include re-signing DiVincenzo, if they use the taxpayer mid-level exception, and if Bobby Portis opts out and commands a bigger deal. They’re still looking at an expensive team next year. With that said, I also feel that the Bucks could decide they have enough depth with their guard rotation in case they decide to move on from him or trade him by the deadline. They’ve got Grayson Allen and Pat Connaughton under cost control for next year, and they’ve done well early on in the season with them. He might be their best trade asset if they want to ge4t an upgrade at the wing or frontcourt.
Scotto: The Bucks are also looking to add a backup center either via a trade or by signing a center in the buyout market, league sources told HoopsHype.
There’s also a curiosity if Milwaukee will also look to replace PJ Tucker with a potential wing defender, some rival executives wonder.
22:51 Chicago Bulls
Scotto: Dennis Schroeder is a name to watch for Chicago. With the injuries to Lonzo Ball and Alex Caruso, and Chicago in a win-now mode, he’s the type of player the Bulls can buy low on for a second-round pick and a player like Troy Brown Jr., for example.
Paul Millsap is another name to watch in Chicago if he gets bought out by the Nets following the trade deadline. The Bulls showed real interest in Millsap before he chose the Nets as a free agent. They could use a little help with their frontcourt depth as they try to make a run in the playoffs.
Gozlan: Schroeder to Chicago was something I was keeping an eye on during his free agency in the offseason because of his connection with Billy Donovan. Schroeder has had his most success under Donovan. A reunion could help Schroeder and help the Bulls with the injuries they have to Lonzo and Caruso. Earlier in the season, we talked about how the Celtics would have to consider trading Schroeder because they’re limited to re-signing him because his Non-Bird Rights will cap him at a starting salary of $7 million. Now, I’m not sure there are going to be offers significantly higher than that.
You can follow Michael Scotto (@MikeAScotto) and Yossi Gozlan (@YossiGozlan) on Twitter.