Cavs’ Most Interesting Trade Options Before February Trade Deadline
Not alright Dwight:
14.4 PPG – 5.3 RPG – 61.2 FG% – N/A 3PFG%
When it comes to Dwight Howard, it would really be the Cavs that denied this trade, but he is a hot commodity so his trade potential has to be addressed. Reports surfaced around two months ago that Howard was unhappy in Houston and that if the right offer came through he would request a trade. The problem with Howard however is two-fold. On one hand, he is arguably a top three center in the league; on the other, he is a traditional center who would face many of Mozgov’s limitations. The Rockets don’t often play him against small-ball lineups, and it wouldn’t make much more sense with the Cavs. Howard is slow, and while his defense has won him multiple DPOY awards and solidified his anchor reputation down-low, those awards were won back when basketball was traditional and four guards on the court wasn’t a norm. Trading for Howard would be betting heavily on the success of the Spurs against Golden State in the West, otherwise the Cavs would have an All Star who could do very little beyond scoring in the finals. The other issue with Howard is the same game the Cavs played with Kevin Love last year, with no guarantee that Howard would stay. With his ego, playing third string might not sit well with him. Also, why would any Cavs fan want a guy who snubbed the world of a LeBron-Kobe finals matchup.
Trade: Cavs Send: Kevin Love (PF) – Rockets Send: Dwight Howard (C)
27.6PPG – 9.4 RPG – 45.7 FG% – 34.6 3PFG%
Cousins is a special player. I love Kyrie Irving, he is my favorite player in the league by a wide margin and I honestly believe that after Steph Curry, maybe Russell Westbrook he is the best point guard in the league. This being said Cousins is the only player on this list I think talent wise is better than Kyrie, and would be one of the very few individuals who would turn him into a third option. With Kyrie’s return, as well as Tyronn Lue’s plan is to speed up the tempo , which he pointed out as a large reason for his debut loss against Chicago:
It’s definitely needs to be addressed, as the Cavs have fallen behind as the 27th slowest team in the league. Kevin Love and Timofey Mozgov have become noticeably worse in these scenarios. Kevin Love is shooting 15% worse in the paint since Kyrie’s return and the Cavs +/- is 9 points worse with Mozgov on the floor, and while I really like Kevin Love (and Mozgov to an extent as well) a trade for Cousins would be a monumental small ball upgrade. Cousins plays like a bigger, better Draymond Green. He can shoot three’s, he can bully the paint and he can hit mid range jumpers, but he finds a balance between being both a small ball center, and a true center. This being said, the Cousins trade is not going to happen. Cousins wouldn’t agree with it, Love wouldn’t agree with it, Coach Karl wouldn’t agree with it, Rondo wouldn’t like it and likely it would create a chemistry nightmare for the Kings (what it would do to the Cavs locker room is really just a coin flip). Karl recently declared that he thought Cousins was “the best center in the NBA right now” and Cousins is finally starting to feel comfortable in Sacramento with Rondo. The aptly dubbed “Suicide Squad” that are the Kings just might be working well enough for confidence to be regained in the franchise, and if they turned down Boston’s “everything but the kitchen sink” deal (Come on guys, someone’s going to want to take Jae Crowder and Avery Bradly for an All Star stretch 4. Spur’s? Clippers? Cavs? Anyone?), likely the Cavs cannot offer anything better. That being said, here we enter fantasy land for some trade that should happen and would be just great.
Trade: Cavs Send: Kevin Love (PF) – Kings Send: DeMarcus Cousins (PF/C) // Cavs Send: Kevin Love (PF), Timofey Mozgov (C) – Kings Send: DeMarcus Cousins (PF/C) Kosta Koufos (C)
These trade possibilities have become impossible, especially given Love’s recent play. At the Cavs’ current state, with Coach Lue at the helm and, they’d just be trading away team chemistry.
“You’d have to go a long way to convince me that we’re a better team winning in the Finals without a player like Kevin on our team. We’ve never once put together an offer involving Kevin, nor have we taken a call on an offer for Kevin.” – GM David Griffin
Now that the “not gonna happen” trades are out of the way, let’s start looking at the somewhat more feasible, and while looking at what’s feasible, notive what common factor Cavs really need.