In the first real interesting trade scenario, Marc Stein of ESPN reports the Chicago Bulls and Washington Wizards have discussed the possibility of swapping swingman Luol Deng for the third overall pick in Thursday night’s draft. The Wizards, who have filled the backcourt by drafting point guard John Wall and shooting guard Bradley Beal the last three years, could fill out a starting lineup that would likely include Nene and perhaps Kevin Seraphin,
Stein reports “ most likely trade construction, if talks were to progress to the serious stage, would send Deng to the Wizards for the No. 3 pick and center Emeka Okafor, who would have to formally opt into his contract for next season ($14.5 million) this week for the trade to go through.”
With Boston looking to get rid of their stars in Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett and Milwaukee potentially losing Monta Ellis, Brandon Jennings and J.J. Redick, the Wizards could possibly make a run at the playoffs.
Deng, 28, averaged 16.5 points, 6.3 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 1.1 steals per game for the Bulls last season.
The Bulls could get an immediate replacement for Deng, potentially having their choice from two of Kansas’s Ben McLemore, Georgetown’s Otto Porter, Jr. and Indiana’s Victor Oladipo.
Getting the expiring contract of Okafor paired with an eventual use of the amnesty clause on Carlos Boozer could clear space for the Bulls to make a run at free agents in the vaunted class of 2014.
Stein also notes the Cleveland Cavaliers also have interest in trading for Deng, but it’s pretty clear they will not part with the top pick to get him.
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