Portland Trail Blazers 6-9 power forward/center JJ Hickson has been receiving exploratory interest from a handful of teams looking to potentially swap for his services before the Feb. 21 trade deadline, a source close to the situation told CSNNW.com.

However, these teams have not made contact with Trail Blazers General Manager Neil Olshey, just yet. The inquiring phone calls are going to Hickson's agent Andy Miller, first, the source said.

Here's why: Hickson is a Bird Rights player on a one-year, $4 million deal and he has the power to veto any trade that is proposed. If he approves a deal, he will lose his Bird Rights. It would have to be the right team and the right situation for Hickson to give up his rights.

The first step for interested General Managers is to find out if Hickson would entertain relocating to their team. If Hickson is on board, the second step would be placing a call to Olshey in hopes that a deal can be made that would benefit both sides.

"Yeah, I'll be lying if I said it wasn't an exciting time in my life," Hickson told CSNNW.com. "It's also exciting to play on this team that everybody counted us out at the start. We're making a lot of noise in the Western Conference. I'm trying to make this playoff run if I'm here after the trade deadline. Obviously, I'll be happy either way because I can veto any trade."