Zach Lowe published his collection of trade deadline material earlier this morning, and the New Orleans Pelicans were smack dab in the middle of a lot of his thoughts.
The most consequential blurb revolves around Dell Demps and the Pelicans 2016 first round pick.
The Pels and Rockets once flirted about Ryan Anderson-Omer Asik swap, and the Pelicans now have both to send to Houston in exchange for Howard. But the Pelicans are sifting through a pile of potential Anderson offers, and teams have gotten the impression that Dell Demps, the New Orleans general manager, may not have the freedom to toss in a first-rounder after dealing three picks for Jrue Holiday and Asik. Other teams have offered to slap top-of-the-lottery protections onto New Orleans' 2016 pick, but that hasn't swayed the Pelicans, sources say. Teams are also confused about whether Mickey Loomis, a top executive for Tom Benson's New Orleans Saints, has the final say over Demps.
The Brooklyn Nets are currently without a general manager, yet it hasn't prevented other teams from attempting to negotiate possible deals before the deadline. Reportedly, Brook Lopez and Thaddeus Young have been the center of most trade discussions.
When it comes to the Pelicans, on the other hand, no one is sure who has the final say over important matters. Is Dell Demps prohibited from dealing future draft picks, or are the Pelicans merely reluctant to do so? Either way, this appears to signal a significant shift from previous strategies by the still current general manager.
Lowe next touched on a number of potential moves regarding Ryan Anderson, ranging from the Detroit Pistons
Anderson thrived in Orlando under Stan Van Gundy, Detroit's coach, and he grew up around Sacramento. The Pistons badly want to make the playoffs after a seven-year wait, and they've shown some willingness to at least talk about dealing a protected 2016 first-rounder.
The Wiz are also a natural Anderson trade partner; John Wall would get him all the open 3s he could eat, and Washington has a readymade trade package in the Kris Humphries/Kelly Oubre combo. Oubre's an intriguing young player at a position of need; the Pelicans aren't doing much better than that. Washington is reluctant to trade Oubre, but he's barely playing, and the status quo hasn't worked.
to possible landing spots with the Houston Rockets and the Toronto Raptors.
One final thing of note was the continuing speculation revolving around Greg Monroe.
The Pelicans still like the idea of surrounding Anthony Davis with a bruiser; they've gone back and forth with the Bucks about Greg Monroe, sources say. New Orleans' roster is pretty bare going forward, and the team might feel pressure to salvage something from this disastrous, injury-riddled season.
Needless to say, if the Pelicans are attempting to hang onto a first round pick for the first time in years (Hooray!), Anderson is the most logical trade piece remaining if the team has hopes of making a significant change prior to the upcoming trade deadline.
Stay tuned for further developments as we're closing in on the 48-hour mark of the conclusion of this special time of the year. Just be sure to keep in mind that a number of deals may not happen until around the final buzzer. Lowe mentions at the start of his article that the bulk of the trades last year didn't occur until the final hour!