Miami Heat, Denver Nuggets, Rajon Rondo among the winners at NBA trade deadline

The player who could’ve helped a contender the most stayed put at the NBA’s trade deadline on Thursday.

The Toronto Raptors didn’t find an offer they liked – and no team liked the king’s ransom Toronto wanted – for veteran guard Kyle Lowry who will remain with Toronto for the remainder of the season.

But there were other moves that could have an impact on the remainder of the regular season and the playoffs. Could is the key word. Looking at last year’s trade deadline, there weren’t many moves that ended up making a huge difference.

Denver acquired Aaron Gordon and JaVale McGee, the Chicago Bulls landed Nikola Vucevic, the Boston Celtics traded for Evan Fournier in the Orlando Magic’s roster overhaul, and the Miami Heat got Victor Oladipo from Houston.

USA TODAY takes a look at the NBA’s winner and losers at the trade deadline.

Winners

Denver

After struggling all season with inconsistent performances and injuries, the Nuggets have moved back into the championship-contending conversation. By acquiring Aaron Gordon and JaVale McGee in separate deals, the Nuggets have bolstered their athleticism and defense. While McGee will help All-Star forward Nikola Jokic with rim protection, Gordon will offer perimeter defense and some outside shooting. These additions will help offset free-agent losses to Jerami Grant and Mason Plumlee and give the team additional depth to complement Jokic, Jamal Murray and Michael Porter Jr.


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