NBA Trades: This Pelicans-Raptors deal would send a star to the Big Easy

Zion Williamson, Brandon Ingram (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
Zion Williamson, Brandon Ingram (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images) /
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Would the Pelicans offer that much for Siakam?

Were the trade to happen, the Pelicans’ hypothetical starting lineup would consist of McCollum, Trey Murphy III, Williamson, Ingram, and Siakam at center. That lineup would certainly turn heads, especially if Ingram and Williamson could stay healthy. Better yet, they would still have some depth with Jose Alvarez and Herb Jones. Of course, there are downsides to the trade for the Pelicans.

Having three All-Stars and McCollum share the ball might make the team less than the sum of its parts. There would also be some overlap concerns with Ingram and Siakam, though the Pels were interested in Anunoby last season and Siakam is a more talented player. Additionally, while Siakam has a lot of experience playing at center, he’d have to play the position full-time in a conference that has Nikola Jokic, Anthony Davis, and Victor Wembanyama.

On the other hand, the Pelicans would be cashing in their chips by trading for Siakam, and he’d provide them insurance against Williamson or Ingram not being healthy. Assuming that he agrees to an extension, it could also be a multi-season experiment to see if it works. If not, the Pelicans could choose who to trade among their big four.

Giving up depth, Daniels, and a first would force them to reshuffle their roster, but they would still have enough depth to build out a good nine-man rotation, and that might be tempting for New Orleans. Next, we’ll see if the Raptors would agree to the proposed deal.