Grade the Trade: Zach Lowe says Cavaliers should add a unicorn

Jarrett Allen, Cleveland Cavaliers. Photo by Soobum Im/Getty Images
Jarrett Allen, Cleveland Cavaliers. Photo by Soobum Im/Getty Images /
1 of 3

The Cleveland Cavaliers have been the subject of plenty of trade rumors this offseason, and rightfully so. They have put together an elite core of players who fell short in the playoffs. With limited options to make an upgrade, they need to improve the team heading into next season. How will Koby Altman and the front office pull it off?

Their biggest (semi-realistic) trade chip is Jarrett Allen, and there have been plenty of potential trades tossed out involving Allen. That’s not the only way they can upgrade the roster – they could trade into the first round to add a wing, they have the full mid-level exception to offer 3-and-D options, and they should be exploring all possible deals involving Isaac Okoro or Cedi Osman.

Jarrett Allen is the best trade chip the Cavaliers have

If they want to make a big swing, however, it’s got to be Jarrett Allen. The All-Star center is beloved in Cleveland but is arguably more valuable to another team that doesn’t have a second elite rim protector like Evan Mobley. There have been plenty of trade constructions tossed around, and they generally follow the same pattern: trade Allen for multiple rotation wings.

The Cavs could trade Allen to the Brooklyn Nets for Dorian Finney-Smith and Royce O’Neale, or the Dallas Mavericks for Reggie Bullock and Maxi Kleber, and so forth. What hasn’t been discussed much is the possibility of trading Allen not for help on the wing, but for a different kind of big man.

That’s just what ESPN’s Senior NBA writer Zach Lowe proposed on his latest podcast episode. In Friday’s episode of “The Lowe Post” he tossed out an idea for the Cavaliers to move on from Allen and in return add a “unicorn” at the center position. Let’s take a closer look and see just how crazy such a deal might be.