-- With the Atlanta Hawks considering moving 2015 All-Stars Al Horford, Jeff Teague and Kyle Korver before the trade deadline, our NBA Insiders -- Chad Ford, Kevin Pelton and Bradford Doolittle -- have several potential blockbuster trades in mind.
Here are the deals.
Kevin Pelton: Unless the Celtics are willing to part with one of Brooklyn's picks or the Clippers with Griffin, the best realistic scenario for Atlanta is to get a young replacement for Horford who comes cheap on a rookie contract. Capela, who has averaged 12.1 points, 11.6 rebounds and 2.1 blocks per 36 minutes at age 21, would be an ideal target if Houston is looking for an immediate upgrade to salvage a lost season.
Another option would be targeting 21-year-old Jusuf Nurkic from the Denver Nuggets, whom Kevin Arnovitz and Marc Stein report are among the teams most actively searching for "a veteran difference-maker." Nurkic has fallen behind rookie Nikola Jokic in the Denver rotation since coming back from patella surgery, and the Hawks would need to have reliable reports on the condition of his knee. Before the injury, however, Nurkic was one of the most promising players from the 2014 draft as a rookie.
The Rockets could include Lawson (whose contract is nonguaranteed for 2016-17) and the Nuggets could include Randy Foye and JJ Hickson (with their expiring contracts) to balance the money and help Atlanta clear major cap space this year. From there the Hawks could re-sign free agent Kent Bazemore and go shopping for an upgrade elsewhere on the roster.
Chad Ford: The Celtics have been collecting a number of assets to land a star player and boost themselves into contender status. With Horford on the market, this could be their chance.
Two potential deals stand out to me, though deal No. 1 is more plausible than deal No. 2.
Horford is the big, versatile, intelligent big man Boston has been looking for. Celtics coach Brad Stevens would love having him in their rotation.
The Celtics really like Olynyk, a talented offensive player. Meanwhile, Horford will be an unrestricted free agent and turn 30 this summer, and the Celtics will have to break the bank to re-sign him.
Still, Celtics president Danny Ainge will always gamble on talent when he sees it and Horford could push this team into contention for the Eastern Conference title this year and beyond.
The Hawks are trying to get younger, and adding two first-round picks and Olynyk is probably about as much as they'll get for a player approaching free agency. Olynyk is a new-age big who can shoot, pass and handle the ball.
In this scenario, the Hawks would push the Celtics to include an even bigger prize, the Nets' 2016 high lottery pick, but I think the Celtics would resist given Horford's age and free agent status.
Deal No. 2: Celtics send Olynyk, James Young, Evan Turner, the Mavs' 2016 first-round pick (top-7 protected) and Lee to the Hawks and the Nets' 2016 first-round pick to the Kings; the Hawks send Horford, Teague and Korver to the Kings; and the Kings send DeMarcus Cousins and Rajon Rondo to the Celtics.
This one is a little more unlikely for a couple of reasons. The Kings have shown little or no interest, so far, in trading Cousins, and it seems unlikely that Horford would commit to re-signing with the Kings this summer given other options he would have as a free agent.
But if Ainge could pull this off, he'd get the big man he's coveted at the peak of his career. I don't think there's any question Boston would pull the trigger, even if it meant taking back Rondo for the rest of the year. Knowing Stevens, he'd turn that into a plus.
For the Kings, this would be an immediate culture shift and give them the tools they need to make a serious charge at the playoffs this year. Despite their losing record, they sit only a few games out of a playoff spot.
Horford, Teague and Korver would add what the Kings desperately need -- winners who are all about the team. And if the Celtics were to throw in that Nets pick, which could turn out to be the No. 1 overall pick, it might be adequate compensation for Sacramento, even if they lose Horford to free agency in the summer.
For the Hawks, this is, essentially the same deal, though adding a young player like Young and a free look at Turner would sweeten the pot a bit.
Bradford Doolittle: The Hawks need a superstar and with Griffin possibly being on the outs with the Clippers, this could be a great opportunity to acquire one. Griffin is three years younger than Horford and a little better, with a multi-season real plus-minus (plus-3.49) better than Horford's (plus-2.87). He'd pair well in a pick-and-roll combination with young Atlanta point guard Dennis Schroder and get more chances to shine as a facilitator in Atlanta.
If the Hawks don't think Griffin can fit long term with Paul Millsap, you can deal the latter, whose value now is as high as it's going to be. Griffin can opt out after next season, but you'd have a year to make him happy.
So ... just how upset are the Clippers with Griffin? How happy are they about the the 18-4 record they've posted since he first got hurt?
Horford would be a great fit for a Clippers team trying to win now. He spaces the floor and is an upgrade defensively -- an important consideration for a possible playoff matchup with Golden State. He could also play center and hold down the fort defensively if Doc Rivers wants to sidestep any hack-a-DeAndre scenarios.
Miami is another intriguing fit. Horford might be keen on re-signing with a Florida team and he and Chris Bosh would provide a rare combo of long-range shooting on offense and legit big-man defense. The Heat could unload Hassan Whiteside in advance of his possible free agency and throw in Luol Deng, giving the Hawks the option of going with a more traditional configuration.