Best “dream” trades for the NBA

Joe Flynn, Sports Editor

With the NBA season finally underway, and each team finding its rhythm, now is a good time to access who should stay or who should be traded. Here are four of my best dream trades in the NBA:

Rudy Gobert for Jaylen Brown

Rudy Gobert and his relationship with the Jazz has been tumultuous to say the least.

You may know Rudy Gobert as the NBA player who jokingly touched all the mics before leaving a press conference when asked if he was scared of Covid-19, but NBA fans know him as a three-time Defensive Player of the Year. Gobert has made up with his teammates and Jazz management since his Covid-19 controversy, and he even signed a five-year, 205 million dollar extension.

However good Gobert is, the Jazz have never gotten over its hump in the playoffs, and it doesn’t look like Rudy Gobert is the answer. Gobert is good, don’t get me wrong, but he’s not great on offense, and he’s a center in a league dominated by guards.

I think the Jazz should get with the rest of the league and become a guard-dominant team and downsize in the center position. Jaylen Brown would be a great fit on the Jazz.

Jaylen Brown really came into his own in 2019 and made the superstar leap last year, but the Celtics are 13-14 (as I write this) and the Brown-Tatum era isn’t going as planned.

Brown obviously can’t lead his team to a championship, let alone a .500 record, but if he was traded over to Utah, he wouldn’t have to be “the guy.” Donovan Mitchell is “the guy,” and I think Brown likes not having all the responsibility and pressure on him.

The Jazz have great shooters like Bojan Bogdanovic, Joe Ingles, Jordan Clarkson, and Mike Conley. The Jazz would be one of the best offensive teams in the league, and after losing in shootouts against the Clippers in the playoffs last year, they need a guy who can routinely put up 25 a night. The Jazz would lose a great defender in Rudy Gobert, but in 2021, offense trumps defense.

The Celtics would win this trade because they desperately need a big man. They need to up their defense and let Tatum become the one true leader of the team. Give Romeo Langford and Josh Richardson more minutes and allow Schroder to create plays for Tatum and the Celtics will be just fine.

Pascal Siakam for Jerami Grant and a 2022 First Round Pick

Pascal Siakam is on a downward spiral and has been on a downward spiral for the last year and a half.

The only reason you don’t hear his name in trade talks is his massive contract. He signed a four-year, 136 million dollar contract in 2020 and is guaranteed 33 million dollars this year and an atrocious 37 million dollars in 2024.

Siakam is averaging 18.9 point per game so we’ll round that up to a “clean 19.” Pascal is an interesting player, to put it nicely. Whenever he gets a steal and runs a fast-break, he does a series of unnecessary spin moves and ends up committing a travel.

He really likes doing spin moves, so much so that he uses them in the post, when shooting mid-range jumpers, and even when he’s wide open with no one anywhere close to him. I just imagine Pascal Siakam goes to the gym and instead of lifting weights he does 10 sets of 360 spins.

Siakam is on the Raptors, and it doesn’t look like they’re going to make the playoffs or compete on a high level anytime soon, so now might be a good time to clean house. Management might want to start with the 136 million dollar man. Jerami Grant would be a good enough replacement for Siakam.

Grant is a score-first type of guy who doesn’t care about his field goal percentage, and on any given day will chuck up 25 shots.

Grant could be a good fit on the Raptors because if they do decide to trade Siakam, Grant could be a good replacement that says “We’re definitely not tanking because we just traded for an All-Star caliber player,” even if Grant’s numbers are inflated because he plays on the last place Pistons.

Grant might not be enough for the Raptors, so Detroit might throw in a first round pick to persuade Masai Ujiri to trade the former champion. Siakam might be content in Toronto, but his fat contract isn’t doing them any favors.

The Raptors are a team that doesn’t attract a lot of free agents because the average cost of a 1 bedroom apartment in Canada right now is 1.2 million dollars. It’s time for the Raptors to tank away the next 5 years and stock up on draft picks and hope the players they draft work out for them and don’t betray them like Vince Carter did back in 2004.

Ben Simmons for CJ McCollum

Ben Simmons is one of the most hated players in Philadelphia sports history, and he will inevitably be traded. CJ McCollum’s tenure in Portland is coming to an end and he fills a much needed hole for Philly.

Simmons is a freakishly tall point guard who can play the forward position. He is a great defender, something the Trail Blazers sorely need. The one downside about Simmons is that he is one of the worst pressure players of all time. If there was a Hall of Fame of the worst pressure players of all time, Ben Simmons would be the starting point guard.

Simmons choked badly during the playoffs last year. He is also pretty bad on offense, but if he goes to Portland, he wouldn’t have to shoot. He would be there to play defense and rebound.

Simmons for McCollum makes a lot of sense, but 76ers GM Daryl Morey seems content with playing the Ben Simmons situation out. I don’t think it would be a good idea for Simmons to rejoin the 76ers because Philly fans are angry people by nature, and Simmons hates negativity. Simmons is a player who likes to be pampered and told he’s great, and Portland is a lot different than Philadelphia. Portland is filled with people who are all like, “Hey man, you do you. Your aura is giving me strong blue vibes, man.”

CJ McCollum is currently out for an extended time, but he’ll be back before February at the latest. McCollum is a great shooter who is starting to decline in ability, but Doc Rivers can stick him in the corner and tell him to shoot 10 3’s a game.

McCollum can play decent enough defense and could be the player that helps the 76ers get over the hump.

Buddy Hield for Aaron Gordon

Buddy Hield was about to make the leap from good player to star, and then Luke Walton became his new coach; even though Walton has since been fired, and Buddy Hield is now an above average player.

Hield is a great three-point shooter, but his trade stock has definitely taken a hit since his decline. However, the Nuggets need shooters since Jamal Murray is out with a torn ACL and Michael Porter Jr. is recovering from back surgery. Hield would be a good compliment to Jokic and could help the Nuggets stretch the floor.

Aaron Gordon is a serviceable player for the Nuggets, but he isn’t winning them any games. Gordon could plug a hole for the Kings in the forward position, and Hield could plug a hole for the Nuggets in the guard position.

Trades are usually scarce in the NBA, but these four trades would bring a much needed shake-up to the league.