If you’re hoping for a blockbuster, the Feb. 7 NBA trade deadline will be a disappointment.
However, deals will get done. There are some rotation players, role players on teams missing the postseason that could help and some teams trying to shore themselves up before the playoffs are willing to part with picks to make that happen.
But sources tell SN that [the Blazers] have expressed interest in another player expected to be made available for a first-round pick: Atlanta point guard Jeremy Lin.
When the Hawks traded for Lin last summer, the hope was that he could be a veteran presence for the first part of the season for young point guard Trae Young, then could be swapped for a rebuilding asset to help the woebegone Hawks’ future. A first-rounder would do the trick.
The Pelicans and Sixers have also inquired about Lin (11.0 points in 19.3 minutes per game this season), and the Hawks may be able to create some bidding for his services ahead of the deadline. It’ll still be tough to wrestle one of those first-rounders away, but this time around, there are at least more on the market.
(As a side note, Deveny joined me in the latest PBT Podcast breaking down Lin and others who could get moved at the trade deadline, if you’re looking for more trade talk.)
Lin has real value — he’s shooting 37 percent from three, has a PER of 17.5 — and makes $13.8 million on an expiring contract. He can be a quality backup guard who could give Portland 15 solid minutes a game (same with the Pelicans or Sixers, although both of those teams are more interested in wing players such as Orlando’s Terrence Ross).
But a first-round pick to rent Lin? That’s highly unlikely unless the Hawks also take on some bad salary in the deal. The Pelicans, in particular, have contracts they would love to unload and might be willing to surrender a pick to make that happen.
Right now, the Hawks are still asking for a lot for Lin, but over the next couple of weeks the price will come down and he very well may be a player in a new uniform to end the season.