From Kyle Lowry to Andre Drummond: The Top 5 Trade Targets Ahead of The NBA Trade Deadline

Published 03/10/2021, 9:13 AM EST
Jan 25, 2021; Cleveland, Ohio, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers center Andre Drummond (3) drives between Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) and center Montrezl Harrell (15) in the first quarter at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse. Mandatory Credit: David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

With the trade deadline closing in, multiple teams in the NBA are looking forward to strengthen their teams. As the first half of the season concluded, it is evident that there are going to be big sellers in the trade market this time around.


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Let’s take a look at the five biggest trade targets ahead of the trade deadline.

5) John Collins


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Atlanta Hawks have been one of the most disappointing teams this season. After multiple moves this off-season, the Hawks have massively under-performed and are the 12th seed in the Eastern Conference.

Tensions have been pretty high in the Hawks roster as well. Earlier this season, the Athletic reported that star John Collins was unhappy with the way teammate Trae Young was playing. With cracks already appearing in the duo’s relationship, the Hawks might be looking for a solution.

Feb 1, 2021; Atlanta, Georgia, USA; Atlanta Hawks forward John Collins (20) grabs a rebound against the Los Angeles Lakers in the second quarter at State Farm Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Collins is one of the biggest names in next season’s free agency. If Hawks’ condition does not improve, the team might lose a young star in the making. Thus, trading him now to acquire capable defenders and some assets now might be a possible scenario. The rumor market might be quiet about Collins right now, but a shock might in the cards before the deadline.

4) Victor Oladipo

Another disappointing team this NBA season has been the Houston Rockets. After a strong start since the James Harden trade, it looked like the new backcourt of John Wall and Victor Oladipo was set to be a solid unit for the team.

But that clearly hasn’t been the case. Oladipo hasn’t been anywhere near his best in the Rockets, averaging 19.9 points, 4.9 rebounds and 4.7 assists per game. To add insult to injury, the 28-year-old even rejected a two-year contract extension worth $45.2 million.

Jan 22, 2021; Detroit, Michigan, USA; Houston Rockets guard Victor Oladipo (7) dribbles past Detroit Pistons center Mason Plumlee (right) during the first quarter at Little Caesars Arena. Mandatory Credit: Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

It is pretty obvious that the 2-time All-Star doesn’t see his future with the Rockets and is looking for a new team. This has made him a constant in the rumor mill. The latest reports suggest that the Warriors might be interested in trading for the Rockets’ guard.

Oladipo might be having a disappointing season till now, but given his impressive defensive play and ability to create his own shot, he will be a big plus to any contender. The possible suitors for Oladipo ahead of the deadline are the Heat, the Knicks, and the Warriors.

3) Andre Drummond

Cleveland Cavaliers are clearly a team looking for a rebuild. They have three talented players in Jarrett Allen, Colin Sexton, and Darius Garland, around whom they can build a team.

With a different approach all-together, the Cavs have made it clear that they are open to offers for big man Andre Drummond. The 6’10” center has been out of the roster and won’t be playing until Cavs trade him or buy him out.

Feb 5, 2021; Cleveland, Ohio, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers center Andre Drummond (3) drives to the basket against Milwaukee Bucks center Bobby Portis (9) and center Brook Lopez (11) during the first quarter at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

While teams like the Lakers and the Nets will hope that Drummond is brought out by Cavs, given that he has only six months left in his contract. Also, the Cavs might be looking to pick up some more assets with a possible trade.

Some teams who might pull off this trade are the Raptors, the Celtics and the Heat. All teams have the available assets and are desperately looking to add to dismal frontcourts.

2) Nikola Vucevic

After making it to the playoffs two years in a row, the Magic set to miss out on post-season action because of injuries to key players. This hasn’t stopped their big man Nikola Vucevic, though. The Montenegrin is having a career year with the Magic, averaging an insane 24.6 points, 11.6 rebounds and 3.7 assists per game.

With the franchise barely making it to the playoffs and no where near competing for the title, the Magic front office might look to tank this team in order to acquire some assets.

Feb 17, 2021; Orlando, Florida, USA; Orlando Magic center Nikola Vucevic (9) moves to the basket as New York Knicks center Taj Gibson (67) defends during the second quarter at Amway Center. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Vucevic has been in fantastic form and this might be the perfect time to acquire some good young players or first-round picks for the 6’10″center, who is more valuable than ever.

Recently, NBA insider Kevin O’Connor reported that the Spurs, Heat, Celtics and the Hornets are interested in a probable trade for the center. Considering all these teams have young players to trade, the Magic should capitalize on this situation. As for the suitors, Vucevic will be a substantial addition offensively and a decent pick defensively.

1) Kyle Lowry

The biggest name in the trade rumors currently is Toronto Raptors’ veteran guard Kyle Lowry. Having won the championship only two years ago, the Raptors have seen key players from their championship run join rival teams.

With competitors getting stronger, the Raptors haven’t remained as one of the top teams in the Eastern Conference. Their off-season move of signing Aron Baynes hasn’t reaped great results, with the former Suns’ center dipping in form.


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Feb 5, 2021; Brooklyn, New York, USA; Toronto Raptors point guard Kyle Lowry (7) reacts after hitting a three point shot against the Brooklyn Nets during the fourth quarter at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

This has left the Raptors with two options- stick with the current roster and eventually crash out early in the post-season or build around duo of Fred Van Vleet and Norman Powell.

There are multiple competitors who are also interested to take in the veteran Lowry. The 34-year-old is still a great player on the court, averaging 18.0 points, 7.0 assists and 5.5 rebounds per game. He can surely elevate a team from fringe competitors to championship hopefuls.


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The possible teams who might be interested in the 34-year-old veteran are the 76ers and the Clippers. Both the competitors are looking for a shot creator, and Lowry is the ideal solution for their problems.

These are only a handful of players who might be in for a move. It will be fascinating to see which teams finally end up making moves in these 15 days until the NBA trade deadline.



Aditya Mohapatra

1167 articles

Aditya Mohapatra is a sports enthusiast who primarily covers the NBA for EssentiallySports. Having graduated in Mass Communication, he has prior experience in writing for ABP News, and has been writing for EssentiallySports since November 2020. This die-hard Los Angeles Lakers fan feels that LeBron James is the best thing to have ever happened to the NBA, and will hold a healthy debate with anyone suggesting otherwise.