The Orlando Magic are in talks with the Golden State Warriors and the New Orleans Hornets regarding a trade that would bring Warriors scoring guard Monta Ellis, who took home NBA Western Conference Player of the Week honors Monday, to Orlando, reports Jarrod Rudolph of RealGM. Though no deal is imminent, Rudolph says, the trade would send the Warriors' Ellis, center Andris Biedrins, and swingman Dorell Wright to the Magic. The Magic players involved in the discussions are power forward Ryan Anderson, center Daniel Orton, shooting guard J.J. Redick, swingman Quentin Richardson, and small forward Hedo Turkoglu, Rudolph reports. The Hornets' role in the trade would be to "unload" center Chris Kaman.
Ellis, 26, owns career averages of 19.6 points, 3.7 rebounds, 4.4 assists, and 1.7 steals per game. In earning the most recent Western Conference Player of the Week Award, Ellis led the Warriors to a 3-1 record by averaging 20.5 points, 7.5 assists, and two steals.
Orlando has been rumored to be seeking a "splashy" trade for Ellis, future Hall-of-Fame point guard Steve Nash, or another such player, as Alex Kennedy of HOOPSWORLD reported Tuesday, but Kennedy didn't like their chances of completing such a deal.
Rudolph cautions that word of this trade may have leaked in order to prompt the New Jersey Nets to improve their trade offer for center Dwight Howard, but also says "it's clear teams are going all-in" in these discussions.
Orlando Pinstriped Post won't break down any trade until it's made official, but it suffices to say the rumored deal would shake up the Magic immensely. This deal would cost Orlando Anderson and Turkoglu, two-thirds of its starting frontcourt and arguably its second- and third-best players behind Howard, while Redick has been the team's most reliable reserve for each of the last three seasons. Yet it'd also add, in Ellis, the league's eighth leading-scorer and one of its most prolific shot creators.
Would such a move be enough to vault Orlando into contention in the Eastern Conference? That's unclear, as is whether it'd be sufficient to convince Howard to forgo free agency in the summer of 2012. But it's very clear that the Magic are working the phones in hopes of landing a marquee player before Thursday's NBA trade deadline, and that Ellis is very much on the team's proverbial radar.