Both players have agreed to the switch although the clubs remain at loggerheads over the details. Chelsea enquired about Defoe, 24, and were asked if they would consider making winger Wright-Phillips, 25, part of the deal.
A proposal without cash was put forward and then scuppered by Spurs.
The deal remains on ice until one of the London rivals offers a compromise.
But officials at both sides are prepared to let it go to Friday's transfer deadline.