The Cleveland Cavaliers may not be done making moves just yet this offseason, as recent rumors suggest that a trade could be on the horizon that involves incumbent starting center Jarrett Allen.

A 2022 NBA All-Star selection that’s impressive lob threat, rebounder and shot-blocker at his best, Allen’s biggest weakness is that he has underwhelming strength at 6-foot-11 and 243 pounds.

On other teams, this problem would be less significant. However, when considering the overlap in the strengths and weaknesses of he and 2021 No.3 pick Evan Mobley, there becomes a problem. Especially for those that remember how the New York Knicks exploited Mobley and Allen’s lack of strength and meek nature in the 2023 NBA Playoffs.

All of which brings to question: what can the Cavs get in a Jarrett Allen-centered package?

3 best Jarrett Allen trades for Cavs


Cavs receive: Jonas Valanciunas, Kira Lewis Jr.

Pelicans receive: Jarrett Allen

Trade Breakdown

Because the Cleveland Cavaliers only need to trade Jarrett Allen in an effort to get a more physically imposing big man for their backline, the New Orleans Pelicans are natural trade partners for them.

With the Pels ready to move on from veteran center Jonas Valanciunas after cutting ties with 2019 No. 8 pick Jaxson Hayes, they have a clear need in their own frontcourt. In this case, they end up swapping a big, tough and skilled big man in JV for an athletic, rim-running, shot-blocker in Allen.

For New Orleans, this move provides their backline defense with a more imposing interior defender just based on the fact that he’s quicker to get off of his feet. For Cleveland, this provides their interior defense with more size (Valanciunas is listed at 265 pounds, whereas Allen is listed at 243 pounds) in their effort to complement prized big man Evan Mobley (listed at 7-foot-0 and 215 pounds).

The addition of Kira Lewis Jr., the No. 13 overall pick in the 2023 NBA Draft, also nets the Cavs a young lead guard with the potential to be a solid rotation piece. As of today, 32-year-old Ricky Rubio is projected to be their backup point guard behind Darius Garland after averaging 5.2 points and 3.5 assists per game on 34.3 percent shooting from the field and 25.6 percent shooting from 3 in the 2022-23 season.


Cavs receive: Wendell Carter Jr., Bol Bol, Chuma Okeke, Devin Cannady

Magic receive: Jarrett Allen, Isaac Okoro

Trade Breakdown

Despite Wendell Carter Jr. and Jarrett Allen having similar production offensively, Carter is 6-foot-10 and 270 pounds, making him unlikely to get bullied in the low post. So, with the Cleveland Cavaliers’ lack of size rearing its ugly head in the 2023 NBA Playoffs, addressing this weakness is a major win for the Cavs.

The Orlando Magic would have to be willing to part ways with the 24-year-old Carter despite the big man making nearly half as much as Allen. However, if the Cavs are willing to part ways with young wing Isaac Okoro, it could provide Orlando with the impetus to make such a move.

Though an unreliable scorer, Okoro has plenty of upside as a defender and facilitator. With his age (22) and skillset, the Magic could choose to re-sign him as a restricted free agent when his contract expires next offseason. The same offseason in which Magic veteran wing Gary Harris will become an unrestricted free agent. Not that the Magic couldn’t have used a defender of his caliber anyways.

In order to match salaries, Orlando would have to part ways with some combination of Chuma Okeke, Devin Cannady, Caleb Houstan and Goga Bitadze. Its them sending over skilled 7-foot-2 forward Bol Bol is what will balance out the trade in terms of player value though. As raw as he is talented, Bol still needs to work on his discipline and fundamentals at 23-years-old.


Cavs receive: Tim Hardaway Jr., Jaden Hardy, JaVale McGee

Mavs receive: Jarrett Allen, Isaac Okoro

Trade Breakdown

Following the first wave of free agency, the Cleveland Cavaliers’ top catch-and-shoot threats are Georges Niang, Max Strus and Dean Wade. However, with both Strus and Wade shooting a slightly underwhelming 35 percent from 3 last season, there’s a legitimate reason to question if they added enough shooting to their roster this offseason. Even when factoring in 2023 NBA Draft selection Emoni Bates, who shot 33.0 percent from 3 in college.

Enter Tim Hardaway Jr., who knocked down 38.5 percent of his 3-point attempts last season and has a career 3-point percentage of 36.1. A player that could feasibly start at small forward, Hardaway’s addition could lead to the Cavs trying to beat teams with speed, agility and shooting while giving up size.

The main question is whether or not the Dallas Mavericks would be willing to make such a trade after getting prized rookie shot-blocker Dereck Lively II. However, with the Mavs looking for a starting center that allows them to bring Lively along slowly, they should at least have interest in Allen.

As for what would make them bite on the trade? Look no further than Isaac Okoro, a defensive-minded wing that can take plenty of pressure off of Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving on that end. In return, the Cavs add a player that’s less proven than Okoro but still has intriguing upside offensively in 6-foot-4 guard Jaden Hardy. Hardy, the 37th overall pick in the 2022 NBA Draft, averaged 8.8 points per game last season while shooting 40.4 percent from 3.