Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

As a companion to the Eastern Conference Buyers & Sellers, it is time to look at which Western Conference teams are Buyers, Sellers, Either or Neither as the Trade Deadline approaches. All places in the standings are through Sunday.

- Dallas Mavericks (14th place, 11 games out): Neither. It may seem odd to say the Mavericks aren’t sellers considering their place in the standings, but Dallas doesn’t really have a lot to trade. Wesley Matthews’ contract no longer looks so onerous and he’s had a nice year, but he’s 31 and owed $18.6 million next year. Those don’t add up to much on the trade market. Nerlens Noel could be moved, but after barely playing this season, what could the Mavs expect in return? Even recouping one of the second rounders they gave up would be worth trading Noel.

- Denver Nuggets (8th place): Buyers. Denver is all-in on making the playoffs this season. They signaled that when they signed Paul Millsap this past summer. The Nuggets are known to want a backup point guard and they have been linked to both Darren Collison and Marcus Smart over the last few days. If they could get either by giving up a pick or one of their young forwards, it would give them depth a position where they really lack it. Denver is also rumored to be willing to trade Emmanuel Mudiay, who has fallen out of the rotation this season. With the playoffs in sight, but no sure thing, expect the Nuggets to be active in trying to improve their standing in the West. If nothing else, they have Millsap returning as a pseudo acquisition.

- Golden State Warriors (1st place): Neither. Golden State isn’t going to be buying or selling at the trade deadline. They may give up a player like Kevon Looney or Damian Jones to open up a roster spot, but that would be to attract a player on the buyout market. With the best starting five in the NBA and a deep bench, there isn’t much that the champs really need.

- Houston Rockets (2nd place): Neither. Daryl Morey himself said the Rockets weren’t likely to do much at the trade deadline. Of course, that could be a smokescreen as Houston is almost always active in pursuing roster upgrades. This year, however, the Rockets don’t have a lot tradable pieces. They do have an open roster spot, but that seems more likely to go to a buyout candidate. If not, Houston will re-sign locker room favorite Bobby Brown.

- Los Angeles Clippers (9th place, 1 game out): Either. The Clippers find themselves in an interesting spot. They traded away Blake Griffin, but they got good players back in return in Tobias Harris and Avery Bradley. Danilo Gallinari has returned from injury and Patrick Beverley says he’ll play down the stretch if Los Angeles is in the mix for the playoffs. Despite that, the Clips continue to be involved in talks to trade DeAndre Jordan and Lou Williams. Doing so would signal the Clippers are sitting out the rest of this year and clearing cap space for the summer. Or they could go the other way, keep Jordan and Williams and continue to make a playoff push. The Clippers are a key team to watch over the next few days.

- Los Angeles Lakers (11th place, 6.5 games out): Sellers. The Lakers are much improved but still aren’t ready to make a playoff push this year. They’re simply too young for that, which means they’re likely to go even younger and trade veterans if they can. Los Angeles won’t be able to find a trade for Luol Deng, but could find ones for veterans Brook Lopez, Jordan Clarkson or Julius Randle. The key thing to watch for the Lakers is that they do not want to take on any money past this season, as they conserve cap space to make a run at two max free agents this summer or in 2019.

- Memphis Grizzlies (12th place, 9.5 game out): Sellers. Memphis has already indicated they’ll be sellers by benching Tyreke Evans until a trade can be found for him. Evans has arguably been the Grizzlies best player this year. Once Evans is traded, the Grizzlies will likely look for trades for anyone on their roster not named Marc Gasol, Mike Conley or Dillon Brooks, even the former two should be moved as well. They have several players on expiring contracts that could help contenders for a relatively low price.

- Minnesota Timberwolves (4th place): Neither. Minnesota is firmly in the playoff picture and in the hunt for homecourt advantage in the first round. It’s hard to envision the Wolves adding any help for a playoff push though, because they keep such a short rotation as it is. The starting five is rock solid and the bench has been the same four players all year. Shabazz Muhammad has requested a trade and the Timberwolves will likely try to grant it, but that might be all you see out of Minnesota at the deadline.

- New Orleans Pelicans (7th place): Buyers. The Pelicans are hanging in the playoff race despite losing DeMarcus Cousins for the season. They already swung one trade to acquire Nikola Mirotic, who will give them added frontcourt depth. New Orleans is also re-signing DeAndre Liggins for the rest of this season. Despite those additions, they’ll look to add one more player, likely a true center, either in trade or via a buyout. One challenge is the Pels are working right up against the hard cap. They won’t have much to offer in a signing or trade, which limits the kind of player they can acquire.

- Oklahoma City Thunder (5th place): Buyers. It’s been an up and down season for the Thunder. For stretches they look as good as anyone in the NBA. Then they follow that up by looking like a team that will be one round and out in the playoffs. After losing Andre Roberson, Oklahoma City is looking to add a wing defender. They are a popularly mentioned destination for Tony Allen, should he shake free from the Chicago Bulls. The Thunder would also like to add another shooter/scorer for their bench, as they can go through long offensive lulls when Billy Donovan goes to the reserves.

- Phoenix Suns (13th place, 10.5 games out): Sellers. Phoenix has made some incremental improvements, especially since Jay Triano took over for Earl Watson as the head coach. They play hard game to game, largely behind their young players. The Suns already moved Eric Bledsoe and then worked a buyout with Greg Monroe. Phoenix would trade Tyson Chandler, Jared Dudley or Troy Daniels if the right offer came along. They won’t just give players away, but if the Suns can return assets in the terms of draft picks or young players to aid the rebuild, they’ll move in that direction.

- Portland Trail Blazers (6th place): Either. Portland is in a tricky spot. They’d love to add talent to the roster, but don’t really have the means to do so without increasing their luxury tax bill. On the flip side, Portland could move a contract to lessen the tax, or get out of it entirely. A player like Noah Vonleh would likely be part of any deal the Blazers might make, due to his age and contract. Portland has been linked to trying to acquire DeAndre Jordan, but it hard to see what package they can put together to entice the Clippers.

- Sacramento Kings (15th place, 11.5 games out): Sellers. The Kings' offseason plan has played out largely as expected. They signed veterans to take the heat off their kids early. Now that the playoffs are out of reach, Sacramento is moving forward with their youth. They’ve started to sit the veterans on a regular basis and will listen to offers on any of them as well. The Kings reportedly got close on a trade with Cleveland for George Hill and are listening on Zach Randolph, Garrett Temple and Kosta Koufos. Curiously, they are also shopping Skal Labissiere. No matter what, the Kings are likely to look at least somewhat different in the next few days.

- San Antonio Spurs (3rd place): Neither. The Spurs have made just two trades at the deadline in nearly 20 years under Gregg Popovich. Don’t expect things to change this year. Kawhi Leonard and Rudy Gay are out, but should eventually return. They will be the closest thing San Antonio makes to an “acquisition” this season.

- Utah Jazz (10th place, 3.5 games out): Either. The Jazz are hanging around the fringes of the playoff race, despite an injury ravaged season. Utah is one of the teams in the league that could truly go either way at the deadline. They have players like Derrick Favors, Rodney Hood and Joe Johnson who could fetch them assets of varying degrees in trades. Or they could make a move to strengthen the roster now and make a playoff push. Even if they make the playoffs, a first round exit likely looms. Because of this, the Jazz should prioritize building around Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell. That means getting additional assets for players who aren’t part of their long term future.

NBA News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Yardbarker Privacy Policy and Terms of Service. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

This article first appeared on RealGM and was syndicated with permission.

MORE FROM YARDBARKER

New format leads to competitive NBA All-Star Game

Big crash takes Danica Patrick out of Daytona 500

NFL teams wondering if Marcus Peters will be traded

Adam Silver floats seeding playoff teams regardless of conference

Paul George wants his next team to be his last team

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Mayweather Sr. indicates Floyd Jr. is training for UFC

10 takeaways from the first week of the Winter Olympics

Detroit GM 'at top of list' to run potential Seattle franchise

Evan Longoria feels ‘sorry’ for Rays fans after latest moves

‘No indication’ Royals are trying to re-sign Mike Moustakas

Mets GM on Tebow: 'I think he will play in the major leagues'

Sports & Politics Intersect: NBA united against racial divide

10 NFL offseason moves that need to happen

Champions League Round of 16 preview, predictions

The 'Emerald City on ice' quiz

NHL Weekender: Blackhawks, Rangers continue to free fall

Big surprises, disappointments heading into NBA All-Star break

Signing A.J. McCarron would be a typical Browns move

Dario Saric thriving in shadows of Joel Embiid, Ben Simmons

MLB's top 10 starting pitchers for 2018

MLB's top 10 catchers for 2018

Flyers reverse course behind a balanced attack

The greatest barrier-breaking African-American moments in MLB history

NBA News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Yardbarker Privacy Policy and Terms of Service. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

Sports & Politics Intersect: NBA united against racial divide

The 'Emerald City on ice' quiz

NHL Weekender: Blackhawks, Rangers continue to free fall

The 'Hope springs eternal' quiz

Dario Saric thriving in shadows of Joel Embiid, Ben Simmons

MLB's top 10 starting pitchers for 2018

MLB's top 10 catchers for 2018

The 'My Bronny valentine' quiz

Flyers reverse course behind a balanced attack

The '100-point game that you never heard about' quiz

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker