Monday, June 26, 2023

Making a case for why every team should trade their first-round pick this week

With the draft now just hours away, most GMs are no doubt working the phones to see if there’s a trade to be made. After all, this is the time of the year when most of them have a valuable asset burning a hole in their pocket: Their first-round pick.

Draft-week trades involving firsts are rare, but maybe not as rare as you think. Last year, we saw six trades involving first-round picks get made on the draft floor or in the days before, including deals involving Alex DeBrincat, Kirby Dach and Alexander Romanov. Whether it’s flipping picks, dumping bad contracts or adding a big name to the roster, the first-round pick is the coin of the realm once the draft draws near.

So who should trade their first-round pick this year? Well, everyone.

At least, that’s the premise of today’s piece. I’m going to try to make the case for each and every team to trade away their first. Admittedly, this will be easier for some teams than for others. For a few, it might seem completely ridiculous, no doubt leading to many very serious people being angry in the comments about a fake trade their team will not make. That’s fine, it’s almost July and my brain hasn’t been working since early March, do your worst.

We’ll work in tiers. (As opposed to working in tears, which is how I cover the playoffs.) Let’s make a deal, starting with the easiest cases to make and building up to the tougher ones. We can do this.

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