5 NBA players who could be traded before the end of December

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Nov 28, 2022; Los Angeles, California, USA; Indiana Pacers center Myles Turner (33) shoots against Los Angeles Lakers forward Anthony Davis (3) in the first half at Crypto.com Arena. Mandatory Credit: Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

Most of the in-season deals happen right before the NBA Trade Deadline in February. But these five guys could be on the move much sooner.

The handful of days before the NBA Trade Deadline isn’t the only window in which players can be traded but it often feels like deals get clustered there as teams who are selling hold out for the best deals available.

But there are plenty of likely trade candidates who could be moved earlier this season, for a variety of reasons. This is especially true once we pass the Dec. 15 mark, after which players who signed with new teams last offseason are eligible to be traded. Here are a few who could be moved very soon and why their teams won’t wait.

5. How long will the Pacers hold Myles Turner?

The Indiana Pacers have gotten off to a surprising 12-9 start and the strong play of Myles Turner has been a big part of that. Since the public kerfuffle around him appearing to advocate for the Lakers to trade for him, Turner has averaged 18.1 points, 8.6 rebounds, 1.4 assists and 2.4 blocks per game, shooting 56.4 percent from the field and 40.0 percent from beyond the arc.

However, as Caitlin Cooper pointed on this week’s episode of The Step Back podcast, there is still the issue of his expiring contract:

“I think No. 1 is, ‘is Myles Turner going to be willing to sign an extension?’ Because if he’s not, that’s going to dictate a lot of your decision-making. If they’ve had those types of conversations and he’s prepared to test free agency then you kind of need to get that trade done sooner rather than later.”

Turner may be the most appealing player who is likely to be moved this season, a still-young, elite defensive anchor who can space the floor on offense. Everyone knows the Lakers have been interested but they are far from the only suitor and if he’s not coming back and the Pacers are going to trade him anyway, they might as well do it soon.

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