NBA Trade Rumors: OKC Thunder Interested in Anderson Varejao?

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Dec 19, 2012 05:46 PM EST
Anderson Varejao
Cleveland Cavaliers Anderson Varejao reacts after hitting a shot during the fourth quarter of their NBA basketball game against the Los Angeles Lakers in Cleveland

The Oklahoma City Thunder are rumored to having interests in acquiring the quirky Anderson Varejao from the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Verajao has been a treat to watch this entire season. He has always been known for perculiar style of play, but this year, as he's been healthy, nothing has gotten in the way of posting great individual numbers, not even a 5-21 start to the Cavs' season. 

So far in the season, Varejao is averaging a double-double. His scrappy style of basketball is getting him around 14 points, 11 rebounds and 1.5 steals per game. 

The Thunder can't see this talent going to waste. The 30-year-old from Santa Teresa, Brazil is soon passing his prime and competing for an NBA title seems too far ahead in the Cavaliers' future. 

For the Thunder, many will say that Kendrick Perkins is their weakest link. He's not a scorer and is solely present in the lineup for defense. So why not package the big man in a deal in attempt to acquire Varejao?

The Thunder have a pretty deep bench and talent in the D-League as they acquired Jeremy Lamb from the Houston Rockets. They could also throw in Perry Jones III and their first-rounder in 2013 and the Cavaliers have talent and a prospect that will be hard to reject. 

However, Darnell Mayberry, an OKC Thunder beat writer, warns about the dangers of acquiring Varejao through such trade

Without a doubt, the deal would make the starting five better as Verajo plays with a blue collar mentality and will bring a lot of energy by gun-slinging Russell Westbrook's side, but Mayberry sees it as too big of a risk for a small market club like the Thunder. 

Verajao will make them a better offensive team, but if the Thunder can complete in the Finals and are the best team in the NBA today, then there's no point in making a change.

The Thunder already made a lot of noise right before the beginning of the season by moving James Harden. Will they make it a second and acquire a center for their team? 

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