x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

NBA rumour mill gathers pace ahead of trade deadline

This year the Orlando Magic's Dwight Howard is the centre of attention, with the New Jersey Nets, Los Angeles Lakers and Dallas Mavericks all possible destinations.

Dwight Howard, right, of the Orlando Magic, could be traded to any of three teams. Fernando Medina / NBAE via Getty Images
Dwight Howard, right, of the Orlando Magic, could be traded to any of three teams. Fernando Medina / NBAE via Getty Images

March 15 never meant much to me. Just another date on the calendar. Cannot remember it having any particular meaning to anyone not named Julius Caesar.

But this year, it is different. This year I cannot wait for the Ides of March to come and go.

Because March 15 is this year's NBA trading deadline. And never before have I heard so many trade rumours and so little trading, but that has not stopped the rumour mill from spinning out of control.

Last year it was all about Carmelo Anthony and Deron Williams, superstars in the last year of their contracts. This year the Orlando Magic's centre Dwight Howard is in the same situation, and the NBA waits with bated breath.

Howard has supposedly given his OK to be traded to three teams - the New Jersey Nets, Los Angeles Lakers or the Dallas Mavericks. And none look promising.

Some are certain it is the Nets or bust, but New Jersey have little to offer in return. Ditto for the Mavs. The Lakers have Pau Gasol, whom they tried to trade for Chris Paul, and young centre Andrew Bynum, but are unwilling to deal both.

But Howard is just the start. Boston are reportedly trying to trade Rajon Rondo, the Golden State Warriors are willing to move Monta Ellis and Stephen Curry, Minnesota are desperate to trade Michael Beasley, the New Orleans Hornets have to trade Chris Kaman, and Portland are thinking of trading Raymond Felton and Gerald Wallace.

And on it goes. Please, somebody, trade someone.