Almost two years ago when Milwaukee Bucks forward Ersan Ilyasova was a free agent, the San Antonio Spurs were one team rumored to be interested in Ilyasova, before he decided to re-sign with the Bucks.
Fast-forward to today, as the Bucks are rumored to be exploring options for an Ilyasova trade, and the Philadelphia 76ers are also looking reportedly to ship out forward Thaddeus Young, Sam Amico of Fox Sports Ohio's sources say the Spurs could have interest in each player, as the NBA Trade deadline approaches on Thursday.
Some intriguing names to keep eye on as potential moving parts, mentioned to me by league insiders: Milwaukee Bucks forward Ersan Ilyasova and guard Gary Neal; Philadelphia 76ers forward Thaddeus Young; Detroit Pistons guard Rodney Stuckey; and, of course, Rockets center Omer Asik.
The Spurs, I am told, would love to land Ilyasova or Young. But no one's sure how they could actually make that happen.
Ilyasova is set to make $7.9 million this season and each of the next two season's per BasketballInsiders.com. In the 2016-17 season, Ilyasova has a non-guranteed option set at $8.4 million. At 26 years old, Ilyasova is averaging 10.2 points, 5.9 rebounds, shooting 37.5% from the field, and 29.3% from 3-point range.
Young is set to make roughly $8.9 million this season, $9.4 million next season, and close to $10 million in the 2015-16 season with an early termination option via Basketball Insiders. At 25 years old, Young is averaging 17.1 points, 6.1 rebounds, 2.1 steals, shooting 48% from the field, and 32.2% from 3-point range.
As Amico mentions, the Spurs don't have what most would assume are the necessary pieces to put such a deal together. San Antonio does have several expiring contracts like Boris Diaw, Matt Bonner, Patty Mills, Nando De Colo, and Aron Baynes' deals, as all but Baynes and De Colo have qualifying options.
However, the Spurs aren't expected to receive a top-draft pick because they're likely to finish as one of the top-tier teams in the Western Conference, while they also will have two second round picks from past deals.
So, unless Philadelphia or Milwaukee are looking just for salary shedding moves with high draft picks, a deal is highly unlikely to get done.
The NBA trade deadline is set for Thursday February 20.
Hat tip: NJ.com
Ideas from the Trade Machine
Using ESPN's Trade Machine, here are two ideas of deal's that could work through the framework of the trade-machine. None of the names below have been mentioned as possible trade pieces. These are just examples.