Cleveland Cavaliers: Revisiting the Kyrie Irving trade

BOSTON, MA - MAY 17: Kyrie Irving
BOSTON, MA - MAY 17: Kyrie Irving /

In August of 2017, the Cleveland Cavaliers traded away Kyrie Irving to the Boston Celtics.

It has been nearly a year since the Cleveland Cavaliers parted ways with the Kyrie Irving.

This trade occurred after Irving demanded to play for another team. Consequently, Irving was traded to the Boston Celtics in return for a number of assets. The Cavaliers received Isaiah Thomas, Jae Crowder, Ante Zizic, and the Brooklyn Nets 2018 first round pick.

At the time of the trade, the initial reaction was that Cleveland had won the exchange. This is because Thomas was fresh off averaging nearly 30 points per game and Crowder appeared to be one of the best two-way players in the league. Furthermore, the Nets draft pick had potential to be the number one pick.

Unfortunately, nothing worked according to plan.

Crowder was a disappointment from the start. Meanwhile, Thomas was never able to live up to his expectations. Both players were shells of their former selves. To make things worse, the draft pick quickly lost value as it became the eighth pick in the draft.

The Cavaliers decided to trade away half of the assets they gained in the original Boston-exchange. Thomas and Crowder were dealt at the deadline in return for Jordan Clarkson, Larry Nance Jr, and Rodney Hood.

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To finish the deal, the Cavaliers selected Colin Sexton with the eighth pick in the draft

In the end, the Cavaliers gained five different assets for one player. As the saying goes, I’d rather have one five-karat diamond than five one-karat diamonds. Irving left a massive hole in this team. The Cavaliers were never going to win this trade.

All things considered, it could have been worse.

The Cavaliers at least managed to rack up a few young assets. These players will prove to be vital in determining the future of this franchise. The Cavs can either continue to develop these players or use them as pieces in a blockbuster trade.

Whatever they decide to do, the most important thing is that they gave themselves options. Those options are still helping the Cavs to this day, but was it worth it?

No, it certainly wasn’t, but could the latter of Irving’s two options be better? He could’ve just sat out, claimed a knee injury, and completely ruined his stellar reputation in Cleveland.

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All in all, this deal was necessary, and for Cleveland, the assets they received in return were ample enough to continue of their title-contending team.