It's January, and like the last few years, the Cleveland Cavaliers are in turmoil. Unlike in the past, there is some real uncertainty surrounding the team's success going forward, and according to ESPN's Dave McMenamin, "Several prominent Cavs Players" are concerned about the immediate future of the team as a contender. While it seems like the sky is falling for the Cavs at the moment, things could be worse. They do have the ability to improve the roster.
The biggest potential asset being the coveted Brooklyn Nets unprotected first round pick, which currently looks to be in the top-5 range in a loaded draft class. Will the Cavs use it, though? That is the question of the moment, as it seems that Cavs players—likely LeBron James—are pressuring the organization to flip the pick for help now. With the NBA Trade Deadline a mere three weeks away, we've put together five trades to potentially fix the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Cavs Trade for DeAndre Jordan and Kent Bazemore.
At this moment, Tristan Thompson and JR Smith are two of the Cavs' biggest weaknesses on the court. JR is in a slump that seems never-ending and TT doesn't really fit what the Cavs need at the moment. Jordan would change the look and feel of the team, giving them a true rim protector and a dynamic presence inside. In this deal, the Cavs would also get Lou Williams, who is in the midst of a career year, and Bazemore, who would fill the much-needed role of a 3 and D guy on the roster. Would this put the Cavs closer to the Warriors? Unclear, but it would make things easier in the meantime.
Cavs Trade for Paul George.
Over the summer, the Cavs almost traded for George. It was close, but not completed, which led the Pacers to send George to Oklahoma City. On paper, the Thunder were seen as a true contender to the Warriors, but things have not gone according to plan with PG, Russell Westbrook, and Carmelo Anthony. While the Thunder have said openly they're not looking to trade George, that could change if the team stays near the bottom of the West standings and panic creeps in.
The likelihood of George leaving this summer remains high and at this point, getting an asset for PG might be the way to go. For the Cavs, it would certainly be a risk, but adding a talent like George next to LeBron is worth taking a chance.
Cavs Trade for CJ McCollum.
The Cavs need some firepower. Yes, the defense is a mess, but that's always been bad. At the moment, the Cavs are in an offensive slump that could easily change by adding a dynamic scorer like McCollum. Is CJ available? That's unclear, but with the Blazers having one of the highest payrolls in the NBA and another season teetering at .500, you would think something has to change out West.
Cavs Trade for Marc Gasol.
Things are pretty bad in Memphis right now. The Grizzlies fired their promising coach—David Fizdale—and currently are sitting near the bottom of the standings without starting an actual teardown and rebuild. That might mean it's time to move on and sell some pieces. Insert the Cavs and a deal that would send Marc Gasol and Tyreke Evans to the Cavs in exchange for Thompson, Iman Shumpert, and the Brooklyn pick. This would be a significant talent upgrade for the Cavs and would fare well in a matchup with the Warriors.
Let's Get the Knicks Involved...
This trade is a bit less marquee than the others, but would have the Knicks also getting the Cavs' own 1st round pick in the deal. The additions of Courtney Lee and Evan Fournier would solidify some things for the Cavs on the wing, as JR has disappeared from the face of the Earth.