The Drive with Jody Oehler

The Drive with Jody Oehler

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Top5Thurs: Top 5 Least Likely To Be Traded Athletes

We've been on a wild ride as sports fans the last few years. So many big names have been traded, rumored to be traded or even demanding trades that we've become desensitized to it.

Consider in the last six months alone that James Harden, Russell Wilson, Deshaun Watson, Julio Jones and most recently Aaron Rodgers have all had their turn as the subject of blockbuster trades.

That doesn't include Russell Westbrook, Paul George, Chris Paul, Jared Goff, Matthew Stafford or Carson Wentz.

With all the big names flying around, I couldn't help but thinking which current athletes would never be a part of a trade rumor, no matter what was being offered or what the circumstances around the trade were.

Do any exist? Is everyone tradeable in 2021? Not everyone. This week's Top 5 Thursday is about ranking which current players couldn't be pried away from their current team no matter the offer or find themselves dangled as a franchise altering trade bait. The list, it turns out, is much shorter than you might think.

Without further ado, here is this week's Top5Thurs:

Top 5 Thursday: Top 5 Athletes Least Likely To Be Traded

5. Lebron James

  • We're finally starting to see some signs of wear and tear on Lebron's body and career. He recently admitted he would never be 100% again in his career. But the Lakers are an organization built on catering to stars in a city built on catering to stars. While the Lakers have traded big names before (Shaquille O'Neal, Pau Gasol), I don't think there's any scenario where Lebron would be traded. He simply means too much to basketball. And it would be beneath the Lakers organization.

4. Justin Herbert

  • The least accomplished, most inexperienced player on this list but he makes it for good reason. The Chargers franchise is a stranger in their own home. They have shown zero chance of capitalizing on playing in one of the largest media markets in the country before Herbert showed up. Now not only does it feel like the Chargers have a chance to own LA, they might be able to own the NFL someday. I'm not sure there's any trade involving any other young QB and draft picks that could sway the Chargers from ending the Justin Herbert experience.

3. Connor McDavid

  • In a sport bereft of star power, Connor McDavid has it. He's a Canadian kid on a purely Canadian team trying to snap the nearly 30 year streak of no Canadian teams winning the Canadian national pastime. McDavid has amassed 93 points in just 51 games this season and continues a pace unseen in the NHL since Wayne Gretzky. Does that sound like someone the Oilers would ever trade? I agree.

2. Luka Doncic

  • NBA superstars are traded as commonly as left handed specialists in Major League Baseball but Luka feels different. He inexplicably fell to the Mavericks in the 2018 draft and I can't imagine any scenario where Mark Cuban voluntarily moves on or any scenario where the European-born and raised Doncic forces his way out. This is the player Mark Cuban was born to make happy. Cuban is far more likely to keep stacking his chips with Luka rather than cash it out.

1. Patrick Mahomes

  • Wildly successful, wildly charismatic for a city and a franchise that is absolutely wild for football. Mahomes recent mega-extension for a half of a billion dollars was the real ring on the finger that Chiefs fans wanted and they know more rings are coming, as long as Mahomes is in uniform.

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