Players Most Likely to be Placed on the NBA Trading Block

By Evan Caulfield on September 1, 2014

NBA Trading Block

The career of an NBA player is one that consists of both advantages and disadvantages.

The most obvious perk is getting to play basketball for millions of dollars, a profession that many only dream of experiencing.

However one downside to this occupation has to be the lack of job security, knowing that at any moment you face the possibility of being dealt to another team without your consent.

So far several stars and intriguing talents have already surfaced in trade rumors, despite the fact that training camp and the start of the preseason is still pretty far away.

With that in mind, read on to see which players could wind up wearing a different jersey by February 20th, A.K.A. the NBA Trade Deadline.

Greg Monroe/Josh Smith, Detroit Pistons

In a perfect world, the Pistons would get to trade Josh Smith and keep Greg Monroe.

The problem is, there’s barely a market for Smith and his $40.5 million contract, which means the likeliness of this scenario happening is as likely as me playing in the NBA next season.

New head coach Stan Van Gundy is bound to experiment with Andre Drummond, Greg Monroe and Josh Smith in the lineup, but like former coach Maurice Cheeks, he’ll soon find out that there’s no way in hell these three can remain productive together.

The solution?

Bite the bullet and trade Greg Monroe.

Even though Monroe clearly has more potential and value, he’s already made it known he wants out of Detroit after this season.

Trading Monroe would allow the team to place Smith at his natural 4 position, and hopefully pave the way for management to bring in a small forward that can actually shoot the ball efficiently.

Tristan Thompson, Cleveland Cavaliers

I’ll admit it, I was a firm believer in Tristan Thompson back in the 2011 NBA Draft.

His rebounding ability, defensive prowess and motor all just seemed like perfect skills for a bruising big man, even though at 6’8″, he was slightly undersized for the power forward position.

Unfortunately, Thompson could never quite blossom offensively, failing to shoot over 50 percent in the last 3 seasons and struggling to find any scoring opportunities other than the occasional put backs and lobs.

Now with All-Star Kevin Love becoming the head honcho at power forward, Thompson could be headed to a new team relatively soon, since the Cavs are unlikely to re-sign him to a new deal after this season.

There’s numerous teams across the association that could use an upgrade at the 4, but the two teams I’m penciling as prime destinations are the Rockets and Kings.

Dennis Schroder, Atlanta Hawks

Leading up to the 2013 NBA Draft, Dennis Schroeder was a major byproduct of draft-hype, drawing comparisons to superstar Rajon Rondo, due to his long wingspan, passing skills and ability to attack the basket at will.

That hype changed however once the regular season rolled around, as the German native was placed behind Jeff Teague and Shelvin Mack in Atlanta’s point guard rotation, struggling to receive quality minutes before eventually being sent to the D-League.

Now with Mack signing a three-year deal with the team, Schroder faces the possibility of being a full-fledged bench warmer, a role that doesn’t bode well for his long term potential and productivity.

This is exactly why Atlanta will more than likely deal him this season.

With Schroeder’s value continuing to diminish, it’s in Atlanta’s best interest to use Schroeder’s potential as a selling point to other teams.

If successful, they can acquire a player that compliments their roster even better, which would be a win-win for both the team and Schroeder.

Rajon Rondo, Boston Celtics

Oh boy, here we go again.

It appears there’s another rumor about Rajon Rondo wanting to leave the Celtics, and this time it comes from Jackie MacMullan of ESPN’s Around The Horn.

Checkout the video courtesy of Deadspin

Shortly after the video was released, both Rondo and his agent refuted the report, however you still have to wonder if the soon-to-be free agent really has a desire to stay in Beantown beyond this season.

The Celtics clearly don’t have enough talent to contend for the playoffs anytime soon, and with Rondo turning 29 in February, the window for him to get another title is slowly beginning to close.

Trading Rondo would allow Boston to give rookie Marcus Smart a chance to develop in the starting lineup, as well as erase the risk of losing the superstar point guard in free agency for nothing.

Then again, I’ve heard Rondo trade rumors a million times already, so I guess we’ll just have to wait and see if this speculation actually comes to fruition.

Agree or disagree? Hit me up on Twitter @fieldhoops!

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