As the NBA trade deadline approaches, teams are scrambling to make last-minute deals to strengthen their rosters for the rest of the season. Last year saw high-profile players like Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving change teams, and fans eagerly anticipate a similar flurry of activity this year.
Some teams want to improve their lineups, while others want to shed salary to avoid the tax aprons or acquire draft picks for future preparations. While this year's deadline may not be as shocking as last year's, expect some noteworthy transactions that will undoubtedly impact fantasy managers after February 8.
Keeping up with all the news can be overwhelming, but don't worry — we've got you covered with everything you need to know about the fantasy implications of this year's trade deadline.
Most impactful deals for fantasy
The biggest news of the day is that Buddy Hield is finally out of his committee, joining a Sixers squad in dire need of another threat on the perimeter and scorer with Joel Embiid sidelined for a while. Hield will start, so if you held him, this is good for his fantasy stock
Kelly Oubre’s stock is likely dwindling, with De’Anthony Melton nearing a return and Buddy Hield coming in. I’d still hold for now, but don’t be surprised if production falls a bit
Bennedict Mathurin and Aaron Nesmith are winners, as they’ll take over most of Buddy’s minutes at shooting guard and small forward. Both players are under 60% rostered in Yahoo leagues, so if you see them on waivers, they’re worth adding. Though, I prefer Nesmith over Mathurin
Gafford was on tank-watch with the Wizards, so now we’ll see him play meaningful minutes as a lob threat and rim protector with Luka Dončić and Kyrie Irving. He’s never been a 30-plus-minute player, so entering a potential timeshare doesn’t diminish his value for fantasy basketball. It wouldn't surprise me if he starts ahead of Lively going forward.
Dereck Lively’s stock is down a bit, but I’d still hold because there’s a chance that both big men can co-exist in 20+ minutes a night. Lively is currently on IR with a broken nose, but his return is imminent
The real winner here is Marvin Bagley III. The Wizards' frontcourt depth was already limited, so he's about to see an uptick in minutes. He's worth stashing because he’ll be the better fantasy player than Richaun Holmes for the rest of the season.
Holmes is a short-term addition if Bagley's back injury keeps him out of the lineup.
Can I get an Amen for Ausar Thompson’s return to fantasy hoops? Isaiah Stewart is out and Bogdanovic was traded to the Knicks, leaving a vacancy at power forward. It's the rookie’s time to shine — in the short term, at least
The Knicks are going for it, clearing the deck this season for most of their young draft picks over the past several years — RJ Barrett, Immanuel Quickley, Obi Toppin and now Quentin Grimes
I expect Bojan Bogdanović to hold value for as long as Julius Randle is out. Precious Achiuwa’s minutes likely take a hit as a result
Grimes is a 3 & D guy who could have a bigger opportunity in Detroit. But the Pistons just traded for Simone Fontecchio (more on that later), and we know how finicky Monty Williams can be with his rotations, so he’s more of a wait-and-see than a pickup, mainly because he’s on IR with a knee injury right now.
I don’t expect Burks to contribute much now that he’s in New York
Trades that will impact players outside the top 100
The Mavs are winning the deadline, acquiring another frontcourt player who can help them win now
Washington is going from a losing franchise to one where they’ll need his shooting and defense. He’ll sustain averaging 14 points with six boards with 1.5 stocks as a starter for the Mavs and could be even better
Williams landing with Charlotte is a wait-and-see because, while the Hornets' frontcourt looks bleak, he hasn’t been a productive fantasy player this year
Dinwiddie, who will likely come off the bench behind Immanuel Quickley, needed a change of scenery. I’m not entirely writing him off because he’s been productive for fantasy in a bench role before, but this year has been rough for him
Schröder was benched in Toronto, but he’s still producing enough to hold in fantasy. Brooklyn still has Dennis Smith Jr. and Ben Simmons, so if we’re being honest, Schröder is the most reliable of the three options.
Intriguing moves that offer opportunities for young players
I like the Pistons' long-term approach to acquiring Fontecchio. It didn’t cost much, and Detroit desperately needed another perimeter shooter. He’ll be in the rotation right away as the Pistons have removed a lot of their wing depth (Bogdanović, Burks, Kevin Knox, and Joe Harris), so he's on my watchlist and has streaming potential in deep leagues
Watch out for Taylor Hendricks. The signals of trading Fontecchio and Agbaji show that they’re opening up more time for the rookie who’s been playing well in the G-League
I don’t expect much fantasy output from this trade. However, Kelly Olynyk’s unselfish play will fit Toronto’s system well. Agbaji is bench depth
GG Jackson's brought a ton of offense for the Grizzlies lately, sporting a 21% usage in limited minutes this season. I think the 19-year-old’s role grows with more minutes available in the frontcourt now that Tillman is gone. Don’t sleep on his defense, too; he's a promising shot blocker. I've added him to my watchlist
The Celtics' acquisition of Xavier Tillman Sr. was a solid move. Although it was a better real-life basketball move, I don’t expect Tillman to do much unless Kristaps Porziņģis or Al Horford get injured
Santi Aldama is well-positioned to take over the center minutes for Memphis. He hasn't proven to stay healthy, but if he can, there's streaming appeal
I’m intrigued by Tre Mann’s potential in Charlotte — especially with LaMelo Ball still out. He’s on my watchlist. Even in limited minutes, he’s always carried around a 20% usage rate, and when given the chance to start, he posted 15/4/3 in his career
Gordon Hayward is a nice haul for the Thunder. When healthy, he is a solid fantasy player. I’m not rushing to add him, as there is a clear pecking order for this squad, but I like the move for the Thunder as they contend out West
Trades with no fantasy impact
One less body for Marcus Sasser and Jaden Ivey to compete within Detroit. Morris gives the Wolves a more competent play-maker off the bench, but there is no fantasy impact here
Other deals that have no fantasy impact
Milwaukee Bucks traded for Patrick Beverley, sending Cameron Payne and a 2027 second-round pick to the Philadelphia 76ers
The Phoenix Suns traded three second-round picks to the Brooklyn Nets for SG/SF Royce O'Neale
The Memphis Grizzlies traded C Steven Adams to the Houston Rockets for Victor Oladipo and three second-round picks
The Detroit Pistons waived PG/SG Killian Hayes and SF Danuel House Jr.