Five players to avoid trading for

Josh Smith among those to pass on at the NBA trade deadline

Originally Published: January 27, 2013
By Joe Kaiser | ESPN Insider

Josh SmithPaul Abell/US PresswireJosh Smith will be an unrestricted free agent this summer. Will he move before the trade deadline?

NBA trade season is finally here.

Memphis and Cleveland officially got things rolling this week with the first deal of 2013, and you can count on plenty of more trade rumors to surface in the weeks ahead as we approach the league's Feb. 21 trade deadline.

Just remember, there are many layers to every trade that go well beyond a player's value on the court today.

In many cases, it's the other factors that weigh more heavily: the contracts involved, salary cap and luxury tax implications, depth chart changes, team chemistry, winning now versus winning later. The list goes on and on.

Considering all of the factors above, here is a look at five players whom teams should avoid on the trade market this season.

Josh Smith | PF | Atlanta Hawks

As fun as it is to watch the high-flying lefty play the game, and as much as he could provide a big lift to a contender in need of an athletic power forward who can score and defend, the 27-year-old brings a big element of risk for a number of reasons. Smith's at an age where he should be in the prime of his career, yet his scoring and rebounding numbers are down this season and his player efficiency rating has plummeted almost four points to 17.35. That's alarming. Throw in the fact that he'll be an unrestricted free agent this summer, and you can see why trading for him would be a huge gamble.

Smith

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Joe Kaiser

Fantasy, Insider