2019 NBA Trade Deadline: When Is It, Which Trades Could Happen?

Anthony Davis, New Orleans Pelicans
Anthony Davis, #23 of the New Orleans Pelicans sits on the bench with an injury in his finger during the game against the Detroit Pistons at Smoothie King Center on January 23 in New Orleans, Louisiana. Chris Graythen/Getty Images

February is arguably the busiest time of the year for NBA teams, as they frantically rush to complete deals before the trade deadline on Thursday.

Some franchises, like the Philadelphia 76ers, have made moves to improve their chances of winning as soon possible. Others, like the New York Knicks, have taken a longer-term view and cleared out salary cap space ahead of the summer.

Meanwhile, the future of Anthony Davis, by far the biggest name on the trading block, remains up in the air with the Los Angeles Lakers ready to pull out of negotiations with the New Orleans Pelicans after deeming their demands excessive.

Here is everything you need to know ahead of tomorrow.

When is the NBA trade deadline?

The 2019 trade deadline is set for 3 p.m. ET on Thursday, February 7. The deadline used to be set after the NBA All-Star weekend but, beginning with last season, it has been brought forward.

Why has the NBA set the deadline before the All-Star break?

For a number of reasons, chief among them the fact it avoids the risk of the All-Star extravaganza being overshadowed by trade rumors.

The NBA believes the All-Star break also gives players who have just been traded to a new team the option of figuring out their new surroundings. A bit like students who have just begun college, NBA players also need to familiarize themselves with their new reality.

"It was more unsettling to have a player traded right after the All-Star break," NBA Commissioner Adam Silver told CBS. "The All-Star break would have been an opportunity for the player to move himself […] and get readjusted to the new team when they have that four- or five-day period to do that."

Any chance of a blockbuster trade?

Yes, plenty, beginning with Davis. The Pelicans know the five-time All-Star wants to be traded but are in no rush to accept any offers, as he can't become a free agent until the summer of 2020.

The Lakers have put together a trade package which included their core of young players and two first-round picks. However, ESPN reported on Monday that the Pelicans want four first-round and second-round picks and the Lakers have cooled their interest.

Meanwhile, Marc Gasol and Mike Conley could leave Memphis. The Athletic reported the Charlotte Hornets had opened talks with the Grizzlies, while Sports Illustrated indicated the Raptors have offered Jonas Valanciunas and Kyle Lowry to Memphis for Gasol and Conley.

Have any major trades happened already?

Yes. The New York Knicks sent Kristap Porzingis to Dallas and cleared out enough contracts to have over $70 million in salary cap room available next summer.

Expect the Knicks to be very aggressive in the summer, when Kyrie Irving, Kevin Durant and Jimmy Butler could all opt to become free agents.

Meanwhile, the Sixers decided it's time to have a serious shot reaching the NBA Finals and traded for Tobias Harris, Boban Marjanovic and Mike Scott. In return, the Los Angeles Clippers got Wilson Chandler, Mike Muscala and rookie guard Landry Shamet plus two first-round and two second-round picks.

The Lakers, meanwhile, have acquired Detroit Pistons guard Reggie Bullock in exchange for guard Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk and a second-round draft pick.

Can trades be completed after the deadline?

No, but they can be announced after 3 p.m. as long as all the required documentation has been submitted before the deadline. Players, however, can still change teams after 3 p.m. A team can buy out a player, release him and he can then be claimed off the waiver wire by another team within 48 hours. If he isn't, he then becomes a free agent. Players released after March 1, will not be eligible for the playoffs.