The Feb. 8 NBA trade deadline is fast approaching, and rumors are heating up as teams look to make a deal before the playoff push. The most notable trade of the season may well have already taken place, as Blake Griffin was dealt to the Pistons on Monday in exchange for Avery Bradley, Tobias Harris, Boban Marjanovic and two draft picks.
Eyes are also now fixated on the Cavs after Kevin Love broke a bone in his hand on Tuesday night, an injury that is expected to keep him out for six to eight weeks. Cleveland has been rumored to be in talks for Kings point guard George Hill, and there might be more pressure for the Cavs to make a deal to stay afloat in the Eastern Conference after the loss of Love.
Another team to keep an eye on is the Pelicans, who lost All-Star center DeMarcus Cousins for the season last Friday, when he ruptured his Achilles tendon. New Orleans had an agreement in place with the Bulls for a deal involving Nikola Mirotic, but it fell apart after neither team would guarantee Mirotic's $12.5 million team option for next season. The Pelicans are expected to be buyers before the deadline to compensate for Cousins' absence.
News and Rumors
• The Celtics could pursue Greg Monroe and use part of the $8.4 million disabled player exception they were granted after Gordon Hayward's season-ending injury in the first game of the year. (Adrian Wojnarowski, ESPN.com)
• The Suns will buyout Greg Monroe. When he clears waivers, the 27-year-old big man will become an unrestricted free agent and there will be interest in signing him around the league. (Adrian Wojnarowski, ESPN.com)
• Joakim Noah will not be required to return to the Knicks before the Feb. 8 trade deadline after reportedly getting into a heated exchange with coach Jeff Hornacek Jan. 24. (Adrian Wojnarowski, ESPN.com)
• The Bulls will sit out Nikola Mirotic for the "immediate future." (K.C. Johnson, Chicago Tribune)
• The Sixers are interested in Grizzlies guard Tyreke Evans, but Memphis' asking price of a first-round pick has hamstrung discussions. Philly could be enticed to make the deal, however, if Memphis agrees to take Jerryd Bayless, who is owed $8.5 million next season. Other teams interested in Evans, who has enjoyed a resurgence in Memphis, include the Celtics, Thunder, Heat, Rockets and Pelicans. (Marc Stein, New York Times)
• As New Orleans' deal for Bulls forward Nikola Mirotic hits a wall, the Jazz are still interested in dealing for the sharp-shooting Spaniard. A potential holdup for the deal: Utah does not want to part with a first-round pick for Mirotic, who could become a free-agent after the season. (Tony Jones, Salt Lake Tribune)
• The Bucks are interested in acquiring a center and have been linked with the Clippers' DeAndre Jordan. Milwaukee is also reportedly interested in Miami's Hassan Whiteside. Miami would likely need to receive Jabari Parker in return to pull the trigger. Parker was the second overall pick in the 2014 but hasn't played in a year since tearing his ACL. He is expected to return to the court this week. (Steve Kyler, Basketball Insiders)
• There were reports that the Clippers planned to continue as active sellers ahead of the deadline, but coach/general manager Doc Rivers called those reports "not true." If Los Angeles does make another deal, keep an eye on Lou Williams, who is having arguably the best season of his career and can provide an instant scoring punch off the bench for a contender. (Jovan Buha, ESPN.com)
• The Pistons have "ramped up" efforts to trade third-year forward Stanley Johnson, who had a career-high 26 points on Tuesday night. Johnson, who was picked eighth in the 2015 draft, has struggled in his young NBA career but is still just 21 years old. Detroit is reportedly interested in the Jazz's Rodney Hood, but Utah might not be interested in a swap. (Steve Kyler, Basketball Insiders)
• The Clippers are exploring all their options regarding the two best players remaining on their roster: DeAndre Jordan and Lou Williams. Los Angeles is reportedly interested in inking both players to extensions before seriously considering any trade offers. The Clippers are also looking to shed salary to position themselves to make runs at free agents in the summer—L.A. has under $50 million in contract commitments to just six players next year, and any team dealing for Jordan would likely have to take on either Wesley Johnson's ($6.1 million option) or Austin Rivers' ($12.65 million option) deal. (Adrian Wojnarowski, ESPN.com)
• The Knicks are intent on moving Joakim Noah after the veteran center was involved in a heated exchange with coach Jeff Hornacek during practice this week. Noah, 32, has played just seven games this season. His contract is extremely difficult to trade, as he still has two full years left on the four-year, $72 million deal Phil Jackson gave him in 2016. (Shams Charania, Yahoo! Sports)
• The Lakers are another team looking to get lean on contract commitments ahead of the summer. To do so, Los Angeles will want to explore trading Jordan Clarkson, Julius Randle and/or Luol Deng. Deng is owed $36 million over the next two seasons and has played in just one game this season, so teams won't realistically consider onloading his deal unless one of the Lakers' best players (Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram or Kyle Kuzma) are involved. Deng would prefer a buyout which would allow him to sign somewhere as a free agent (Bill Oram, Orange County Register)
• The Celtics will not sign 26-year-old forward Jarrell Eddie to a second 10-day contract because Boston wants to keep its options open as the trade deadline approaches. The Celtics have an open roster spot and the $8.4 million disabled player exception they were granted after Gordon Hayward's season-ending injury in the first game of the year. (Shams Charania, Yahoo! Sports)