Grade the Trade: Cavaliers swap center for forward in midseason deal

Cleveland Cavaliers center Jarrett Allen. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports
Cleveland Cavaliers center Jarrett Allen. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports /
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Trade rumors continue to swirl around the Cleveland Cavaliers, as they have proven they are not afraid of making a big swing and clearly have their eyes set on making it further in the playoffs next season. They made their moves in free agency, bolstering shooting at three positions, and now their best option to further improve is via trade.

That could come via a sign-and-trade of one of the free agents still available. One such player mentioned recently has been P.J. Washington of the Charlotte Hornets, and the Cavs could put together a package for him. Kelly Oubre Jr. and Christian Wood have also been mentioned.

The best options available, however, are those players under contract. To entice a team to give up a good player under contract, however, the Cavaliers will need to provide something of value in return. With a paucity of draft picks available after spending most of them in the Donovan Mitchell trade, that means moving a good player in such a deal.

New trade candidates for the Cavaliers

We come thus to Jarrett Allen as a form of matching salary and a recent All-Star and All-Defense candidate who would be valuable to another team. Rumors that Allen could be moved are not new, but many such whispers over the past two months have involved players eligible to be traded right now; wings from the Brooklyn Nets or Dallas Mavericks, or even a move to the Oklahoma City Thunder. All sorts of ideas have been spun about.

What if the trade happened further down the road? Players who signed contracts this summer will become eligible to be traded during the season, and most of them prior to the NBA Trade Deadline. That would open up more trade possibilities for the Cavaliers. Is there a midseason deal available to swap Allen for help at another position?

There’s at least one that comes to mind; let’s take a closer look.