CHICAGO – As the NBA trade deadline approaches, there are always rumors about a few stars going to different places. But there is one native of Chicago who has put his name front and center of that market.
That’s forward Anthony Davis, who told the Pelicans that he will not sign a contract extension with the team and has officially demanded a trade. In fact, he was fined $50,000 dollars by the NBA on Tuesday for publically coming out and asking to be traded to another team.
New Orleans acknowledged this in a news release on Tuesday and said they “have also requested the League to strictly enforce the tampering rules associated with this transaction.” It means the Chicago native, who played at Perspectives Charter School, will be looking for a new team for the first time in his NBA career.
The five-time All-Star and three-time All-NBA first team selection will be the biggest name on the trade market as the February 7th deadline approaches and into the offseason should he remain on the Pelicans. At the moment, Davis is averaging a career-high 29.3 points per game along with 13.3 rebounds a contest, possessing the ability to be a franchise-changer for whichever team acquires him.
Could the Bulls, who are in desperate need of a franchise-changing player, be able to draw the center home? The odds may seem long.
Per a report from ESPN’s Brian Windhorst on “The Lowe Podcast,” it’s a badly kept secret in the NBA that Davis doesn’t want to play for the Bulls.
Plus the cost for the Bulls could be more than they’d be willing to pay, with the team likely having to say goodbye to their first overall pick this year – likely in the Top 5 – and perhaps a few members of their developing core to pull it off. Even with his immense talent, the Bulls might not be up to giving that all up, and Davis might not be keen to the idea of going to a team where competing for a championship is a few years away at the least.
The Celtics, Knicks, and Lakers figure to be in the mix to land the center, who this week became the biggest player to enter the trade market as the second half of the NBA season winds down.