New @ringer on the OKC Thunder, Chet Holmgren’s defensive dominance, the team making a leap, and whether Sam Presti has seen enough to cash in some picks to bolster the roster into a potential Finals contender.— Kevin O'Connor (@KevinOConnorNBA) December 18, 2023
Plus, six other thoughts around the NBA: https://t.co/WahLv0Q8mf
We’ve already heard that Danny Ainge is now willing to listen to offers for Lauri Markkanen, and the wording of the Lauri Markkanen seems very similar to what was said about Donovan Mitchell who was eventually traded.
After previously shutting down inquiries on moving All-Star guard Donovan Mitchell, rival teams say the Utah Jazz are showing a willingness to listen on possible trade scenarios, sources tell ESPN.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) July 12, 2022
The asking price appears to be steep, but in the wake of Utah’s recent Rudy Gobert blockbuster deal to Minnesota, the Jazz are no longer simply dismissing calls on Mitchell, sources said.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) July 12, 2022
This wording is similar to what Kevin O’Connor states in his article:
So what’s the line for an acceptable offer? My impression from talking to teams is that it’s something resembling the haul the Jazz received for Mitchell and Gobert: so, five-ish firsts and/or players of comparable value. This is a lot for Markkanen in the sense that he doesn’t have postseason scoring success like Mitchell, or three Defensive Player of the Year trophies like Gobert. As good as Lauri is, he’s made an All-Star team only once and thrived at this level in only one system. But his qualities seem like a fit for virtually any scenario you can imagine: Flanking Bam Adebayo in Miami’s frontcourt, adding a desperate influx of shooting to help Detroit’s young core, replacing Julius Randle in New York, filling open space in Golden State, operating in the two-man game with Tyrese Haliburton in Indiana, mixing in with Houston’s versatile core, thriving off the ball in New Orleans, or completing Oklahoma City’s core.
The price for Markkanen is about the same as it was for Mitchell and Gobert, “five-ish firsts and/or players of comparable value.” The wording of that is interesting because it gives some wiggle room. If the Jazz get a young developing player does that make it 4 firsts and a player? Does that mean pick swaps count? This allows the Jazz to take more offers and listen to different ideas from different GMs. The fact Markkanen makes around $17 mil between this season and next makes him even easier to trade, this isn’t a bloated contract like Tobias Harris’ who is apparently a target of the Detroit Pistons. It’s much easier to make a contract work for $17 mil rather than $39 mil. On top of that, smaller contracts for developing players could make this happen rather than having so many parts in move.
All things considered, if you want to get Markkanen, you’ll have to pay up for him. And what we learned from the Gobert and Mitchell trades? It could absolutely work. Trade season is here and we’re going to keep hearing rumors up until trade deadline, the question is, is there one GM/Owner that wants Markkanen bad enough to make this happen?