NBA Draft Set To Shake Things Up

Some big names are being tossed around as trade bait.

James LeBeauby James LeBeau

If any sport can compete with the NFL when it comes to draft interest, it's the NBA. With the league rising in popularity, so to does the demand for excellence because if you have a relevant team, then people will notice you. With that thought prevalent among GM's across the land, the trade chatter has really sparked leading up to Thursday's draft.

Experts have labeled this draft as one of the weakest of all time but you can't tell it by the amount of interest being shown to lottery picks. As we get closer and closer to the big event, more and more news is leaking out that some big names are being dangled as trade bait.

The latest buzz has the San Antonio Spurs dangling their All-Star point guard Tony Parker for a high draft pick. Parker, 29, is one of the most talented points in the league but he has alienated the Spurs management to a fair degree with derogatory comments made to the media. Specifically, he has stated that he doesn't feel that the Spurs can be contenders again as they are due to their age.

While that isn't a horrible statement and may even be true, it's still one that the Spurs don't want to hear from one of their core players.

It is being reported that the Spurs have had discussions with the Toronto Raptors(no. 5 pick) and Sacramento Kings (no. 7) about a potential deal.

Another name that has been tossed around in trade speculation is Phoenix Suns point guard Steve Nash. It has been reported that Phoenix and Minnesota has had some discussion about potentially trading Nash for the number 2 pick. The Suns are told to be in love with Williams and would take any chance to get him.

This potential deal, however, doesn't look to be completed as the Suns are reluctant to trade their franchise player due to fan backlash and more than likely won't pull the trigger.

With around 48 hours to go till the Draft, you can expect to hear a ton more trade rumors swirl about as teams are set to do anything possible to make that one big move that will catapult them over the top. The current win now environment of the NBA is one of the biggest draws of the sport and that attitude will be on full display Thursday night.

Photo Credit:  ASSOCIATED PRESS