The Cavs, Boston and Brooklyn pull a three-team trade

1The Cleveland Cavaliers have created the cap room needed to sign Free Agent LeBron James to a free agent max-contract. Here’s a close look at the assets given up, and acquired:

Boston Celtics:

  • Marcus Thornton–6’4″ Shooting Guard (from Brooklyn)
  • Tyler Zeller–7’0″ Center (from Cleveland)
  • Protected 2016 1st round pick, top 10 protected in 2016, 2017 and 2018. If the Celtics haven’t acquired a pick by 2019, it becomes unprotected (from Cleveland)

Brooklyn Nets

  • Jarrett Jack–6’3″ Point Guard (from Cleveland)
  • Sergey Karasev–6’7″ Shooting Guard (from Cleveland)

Cleveland Cavaliers

  • The draft rights to Ilkan Karaman–6’9″ Power Forward (from Brooklyn)–Ilkan was selected in the second round of the 2012 NBA draft as a “Euro-Stash” player, and has had mixed results since then, including injury issues. He has said that his personal goal is to play in the NBA, but has chronic knee issues that many believe will cost him the opportunity to ever play NBA basketball. He’s unpolished, and I think the likelihood that he’ll ever play in the NBA is unlikely.
  • The draft rights to Edin Bavcic–6’11” Power Forward (from Brooklyn)–Bavcic is likely never going to play in the NBA either, but is utilized as a trade commodity. The Nets acquired his rights in January. He was a second round pick by the Toronto Raptors in the 2006 draft, and is a marginal European player.
  • The draft rights to Christian Drejer–6’9″ Small Forward (from Brooklyn)–Drejer was recruited to Florida and quit halfway through the 2003 season. He was drafted by Brooklyn (New Jersey) in the second round of the 2004 draft, ended up playing for Barcelona for a few years, and ultimately retired in 2008. He’s only 31 now, but he’s not going to be coming back any time soon.

The Cavaliers acquired three players that they will never see wear a Cavaliers uniform, nor should we want them too. These players were just included in the deal to allow it to take place to begin with. You have to love the quirks of the NBA, that allow the rights of players to be dealt like cards, for ten-plus years.

This deal was a fairly typical salary dump, with the Cavaliers lining up their roster to allow LeBron James to join the team once the ten day moratorium is up on July 10th.

The Cavaliers now have in the ballpark of $24 million to sign James, should he officially decide to leave the Heat.

So here’s my question: Would the Cavaliers have made this deal without knowing something?

There are two trains of thought here:

  1. The Cavaliers and Dan Gilbert are trying to match Pat Riley’s moves yesterday, when he signed Danny Granger and Josh McRoberts. Riley is trying to send a message to LeBron, that they can make the types of moves to improve the roster. Gilbert has now opened up the roster so that LeBron can sign. There are also rumblings that Mike Miller and Ray Allen are having discussions to sign with Cleveland, and that the Cavs have lined up a trade with the Minnesota Timberwolves that would bring Kevin Love to the team, giving the Cavs a Big 3 of James, Love and Kyrie Irving. The Cavs could be moving on blind faith, that LeBron IS considering Cleveland, and Cleveland is showing they can match Miami move-for-move.
  2. The Cavaliers have already talked to LeBron, LeBron knows he’s coming, and the Cavs are putting a week or so of discussions into play a day before moves to be made.

Its complicated for Cavs fans, coming off of the 2010 debacle, but there are games afoot, and LeBron James is once again at the center.

My one sidenote here: I think it’s awesome that Danny Ainge may have called the Cavs to get involved in this because Riley told Ainge to “Shut the F&%$^#& up” for talking about LeBron complaining too much about getting fouled. There’s synchronicity there, don’t you think?

Stay tuned to Everybody Hates Cleveland for more coverage on the Cavs in the coming hours.

 

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