Since the days of the John Wall and Bradley Beal tandem, the Washington Wizards have always existed in NBA limbo, neither a contender nor a rebuilding team. As exciting as the backcourt duo was, they never found monumental success. Washington, D.C.’s team only has reached the NBA Playoffs once in the last half decade, losing in the first round in 2021 in a gentleman’s sweep against the Philadelphia 76ers.
With a fresh front office going into the 2023 NBA offseason, the Wizards are prime for a rebuild in the eyes of “many rival executives,” per a report from Josh Robbins of The Athletic (subscription required).
With plenty of young talent in D.C., the Cleveland Cavaliers should seriously pursue trade talks with Washington before the start of next season.
Currently, Wizards star Beal inked a new deal with a no-trade clause, meaning he can only be dealt if he personally accepts the transaction. For that reason, Beal is a far cry from a reasonable trade target for Cleveland (especially considering his upcoming $53 million salary in 2025-2026).
Additionally, Kyle Kuzma is an unrestricted free agent who can choose his next home city. Though he could suit up for the Cavaliers with a sign-and-trade, he is another highly improbable target.
Though Beal and Kuzma will not be joining the Cavs, there are numerous worthwhile role players in the District.
In potential trade talks between the two teams, who would be the best options to suit up in wine and gold? Here’s the four trade targets Koby Altman should look to bring to the Land.
Target No. 1: Monte Morris
In the 2021-2022 NBA season, Cleveland found veteran leadership in backup point guard Ricky Rubio, but a fantastic season was cut short with a season-ending ACL tear. Rubio did not return until later into the following season after signing a new, multi-year contract with Cleveland. Sadly, he was not the same upon his recovery.
In the case that the Cavs want another solid point guard if Rubio still cannot return to form, playmaking shot creator Monte Morris could prove to be a cheap, but valuable acquisition from the Wizards. Morris might not be the perimeter defender that Rubio has been, but at only 27 years old, Morris could be a useful role player for quite some time next to Cleveland’s young star core.
Morris shot 38.2% from three in his first year in Washington on 3.3 attempts per game. Along with 5.3 assists, Morris’ scoring and court vision earned him almost 30 minutes per contest as the starting point guard for the Wizards.
Morris has played next to numerous dynamic players as Beal’s running mate and alongside Nikola Jokić beforehand in Denver. His career has proven Morris as a steady role player next to superstar talents.
In Cleveland, Morris could combine his history with guards and post players surrounded by Cleveland’s blossoming squad.