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NBA moves trade deadline ahead of the All Star break

FILE - In this Friday, April 7, 2017, file photo, New Orleans Pelicans forwards DeMarcus Cousins, left, and Anthony Davis joke with each other as they sit on the bench and watch the second half of the team's NBA basketball game against the Denver Nuggets in Denver. The Pelicans did not make the playoffs for the second year in a row. The All-Star break trade that paired Cousins and Davis showed considerable potential. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski, File)
AP Photo/David Zalubowski, File

The Sacramento Kings’ decision to trade power forward DeMarcus Cousins in February was an awkward one, as the five-time All-Star first heard about the possibility of him being dealt during his press conference following the All-Star Game. There should not be such awkwardness at next year’s All-Star Game, with the league making the decision to move its trade deadline.

It was reported on Wednesday by Shams Charania of The Vertical that the NBA has moved the trade deadline to the second Thursday before the All-Star break, which during the 2017-18 season will fall on February 8, 2018. Last year’s deadline was February 22, three days after the All-Star Game.

While there was no shortage of rumors in the lead up to last year’s deadline, the Cousins trade was the biggest move and he’ll be a key figure for the Pelicans alongside Anthony Davis and Jrue Holiday. Houston acquired Lou Williams from the Lakers in an attempt to bolster its bench, and Dallas landed Nerlens Noel in a trade that sent Justin Anderson to Philadelphia.

Williams is headed back to Los Angeles but will play for the Clippers next season, as he was included in the trade that featured Chris Paul moving from L.A. to Houston. As for Noel, he’s still looking for a new contract as a restricted free agent.

Dallas extended a qualifying offer to Noel in late June, with the center being viewed as a key building block for the franchise moving forward. However, the 6-foot-10 center remains unsigned as he has yet to agree to an offer sheet from another team.

The trade deadline move was one of two decisions made by the NBA Board of Governors, with the other being to cut down the total number of timeouts in a game from 18 to 14 according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.com. Teams will also be limited to two timeouts in the final three minutes of games, with the same number of timeouts available for each overtime period.



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