The Cleveland Cavaliers should look to trade for Gordon Hayward

Gordon Hayward, Charlotte Hornets and Lauri Markkanen, Cleveland Cavaliers. Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images
Gordon Hayward, Charlotte Hornets and Lauri Markkanen, Cleveland Cavaliers. Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images /

Following the Donovan Mitchell trade, the Cleveland Cavaliers have been left with a very noticeable weakness in their small forward position without a clear solution if no roster changes happen.

Currently, there is a debate on who should start for the Cavs at their three spot, ranging anywhere from Lamar Stevens to Dean Wade, some could even argue for Kevin Love to become a starter again after nearly winning Sixth Man of the Year.

I think there is a far better option that would improve the offense drastically while also not hurting the elite defense that the Cavaliers had last season.

This solution is named Gordon Hayward, a former All-Star who has been involved in trade talks nearly every year since 2017.

Gordon Hayward is a two-way wing who was athletic when he was younger but has lost some of that to age and various injuries (one of which was pretty horrifying.)

Hayward averaged 15.9 points, 4.6 rebounds, and 3.6 assists as the fourth option on a Charlotte Hornets team featuring some high-scoring players.

The former All-Star can bring value to any team with his playmaking abilities from the wing position and his spacing on offense, creating issues for opposing teams who may forget about him on a team with various scorers.

He is an efficient scorer, shooting at 45.3% from the field, 37.1% from beyond the three-point arc, and 82.6% from the free throw line for his career, all of these percentages have also gone up as he’s progressed.

Hayward is also an incredibly underrated defender, often being tasked with guarding the best player on opposing teams even when on the Utah Jazz and Boston Celtics. He still finds a way to average a steal and half a block per game.

While he has been injury prone since his injury in 2017, he has had two healthy seasons in the four since then, playing 72 games in his first season back and playing 52 of the 72 games that the Celtics played in 2019-20 season.

What would a trade for Gordon Hayward look like for the Cleveland Cavaliers?

There are multiple angles that could be used for this trade to go through as the asking price for Gordon Hayward has seemed to be pretty low at times. Rumors have spread that the asking price is only Russell Westbrook and a first-round pick.

Let’s go a little above that asking price just to add more to the realm of possibility for this scenario:

This would see primarily young players being moved to help with the Hornets’ rebuild, and at the same time this would open up space for the Cavaliers to improve their guard and forward depth in free agency with some notable names still remaining in the market.

This may be the best-case scenario as they would continue to have Cedi Osman and Lamar Stevens to back up Hayward while also not shoving them too far into the luxury tax.

This trade is not the best value following the incredible season from Kevin Love, but it’s much better for keeping the Cavaliers out of the luxury tax with Hayward’s large contract. Love would help cover up some of the Hornets’ issues but far from all of them. Dylan Windler would add some youth to their roster.

Next. Grading the Cavs’ Mitchell trade from all angles. dark

If the Cleveland Cavaliers make either of these trades or even a different one to land Gordon Hayward, they will hold the best starting lineup in the NBA and a good bench as well. This could catapult them to being the favorites to win the championship.