Thunder Could Trade Up For Pelicans’ No. 8 Pick In NBA Draft

NBA Trade Rumors
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The New Orleans Pelicans have to be happy about the direction the franchise is heading. They ended the season on a high note, defeating the San Antonio Spurs and LA Clippers in the NBA Play-In Tournament to earn a spot in the postseason.

While they didn’t advance past the first round, they did give the Phoenix Suns all they could handle in six games. This is a team on the up and up, as it is fun to imagine what they could have accomplished had Zion Williamson been healthy and in the lineup.

Williamson missed the entire 2021-22 season as he recovered from a procedure he underwent on his foot during the offseason. Despite not having him in the mix, New Orleans was buyers ahead of the deadline and acquired CJ McCollum and Larry Nance Jr. from the Portland Trail Blazers.

That move helped push them up the standings and gave them a strong foundation heading into the offseason. They are also reaping the benefits of the Anthony Davis trade with the Los Angeles Lakers, as they will be selecting 8th in the 2022 NBA Draft.

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There are a few directions that the team could head in with that selection. Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report detailed what the New Orleans Pelicans could do, as they very well could be open for business when it comes to trading the selection.

“Teams selecting behind the New Orleans Pelicans have painted them as a trade-down candidate, particularly with OKC at No. 12, if New Orleans officials’ prioritized targets are not still on the board at No. 8. Rivals believe Dyson Daniels and Bennedict Mathurin are the Pelicans’ top choices in that slot.”

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The Oklahoma City Thunder are picking second overall but they do have interest in moving back into the top-10 for another prospect. Who they are targeting is anyone’s guess, but it sounds like they could have a trade partner in the Pelicans should Dyson Daniels and Bennedict Mathurin not be on the board.

Lu Dort and the No. 12 overall pick have been a rumored package that Oklahoma City is offering, which the New Orleans Pelicans could be open to. You can never have enough defensive-minded players and Dort is one of the better ones available this offseason. They would still have a chance to add a solid prospect to the mix as well with the selection that Oklahoma City is sending back.