Giannis Antetokounmpo indicating he may want to be traded in the near future has NBA teams planning for that possibility and many others in the next 12 months.
Other big name players, like Joel Embiid and Luka Doncic could also want out of their current situations if things go south this coming season.
Reigning MVP Embiid has openly said, “I just want to win a championship… whether it’s in Philly or anywhere else.”
As for Luka, he has affirmed he’s happy in Dallas and is under contract through 2026-27 with a player option for the final year.
But that doesn’t mean he can’t demand a trade, like we’ve seen Damian Lillard do this summer.
ESPN‘s Adrian Wojnarowski has hinted that there may be big things coming on the trade market and it could be the reason the Lillard trade has been stalled so many times.
“What the trade market, the NBA portal, is going to look like next summer,” Wojnarowski said on NBA Today. “There could be some massive talents available for trades next season. Maybe at the trade deadline. Maybe next year. You have teams weighing the assets they might use to trade for Damian Lillard versus who could be available that ‘we don’t want to be out of the game for some players younger.’ First-team All-NBA type of players who may be in that marketplace.”
If a two-time MVP like Giannis was to actually hit the trade market, it would be HUGE, which is why another insider Zach Lowe also believes that it could be having an impact on NBA’s teams’ interest in Lillard.
“By the way, hovering over all of this is Giannis’ comments last week reiterating, you know, ‘If I don’t sense the Bucks are all-in on winning, I’m not gonna end my career here necessarily,’ Lowe said on The Lowe Post. I think other teams have at least started to have—some of these other teams with assets have at least started to have the conversation of—wait a second if we think we have any chance of being in the ballgame—if that actually comes to pass—and there is no guarantee, Bucks fans, that it comes to pass at all. It could end up beautifully for Milwaukee, they could win the title, he could stay, whatever, do we need to keep our powder dry?”
One thing is for sure, until Giannis signs an extension with Milwaukee and Lillard gets his dream gig in Miami, the speculation will continue.