The best trade that the Cavs can make if Donovan Mitchell wants to leave

Keegan Murray, Sacramento Kings. Photo by Alika Jenner/Getty Images
Keegan Murray, Sacramento Kings. Photo by Alika Jenner/Getty Images /

This season will be the most important season for the Cleveland Cavaliers to date. With NBA teams struggling to keep their talented All-Stars, the Cavs need to be aware of the possibility of Donovan Mitchell wanting to leave in the future. So far, it looks like he is wanting to stay, but many other stars have said that to their front office and fans.

The Cavs acquired Mitchell in the 2022 offseason, hoping to become a title contender with him. The trade included Collin Sexton, Lauri Markkanen, Ochai Agbaji, three first-round picks, and two pick swaps. Unfortunately, the Cavs’ hopes for a deep playoff run didn’t happen. They had several major flashes of being a contender at times with big games against the other Eastern powerhouses and Mitchell’s career 71-point game. However, during the first round, the Cavs were stopped in their tracks by the New York Knicks.

The biggest question the Cavs had last season was their lack of a quality starting small forward. They ended up solving that problem with their acquisitions of Max Strus and Georges Niang. However, the Cavs are still left with one last question: How will the starting backcourt’s size affect the Cavs’ defense this season? The Cavs’ starting backcourt consists of the star duo of Darius Garland and Donovan Mitchell. Although both are All-Star caliber players, their size becomes an issue on defense.

Both Mitchell and Garland are 6’1”. Both of them are incredible on the offensive end, but they can struggle against backcourts that are bigger than them. So this would need to be kept in mind if Mitchell were to come to the team and ask for a trade. In that scenario, let’s look at a trade for Mitchell that can bring the Cavaliers some good wings.

Why would the Cavs do this?

The Cavs would mainly do this for a few reasons: the youth of Murray, Huerter’s shooting, and the draft compensation. The Cavs would benefit a lot from the shooting and versatility of Murray, Barnes, and Huerter. Keegan Murray would fit in well with the Cavs young core of Darius Garland and Evan Mobley. Barnes would be an excellent veteran for the Cavs with him being a former champion. This could be the starting lineup and bench if this trade is completed:

Starters: Darius Garland, Kevin Huerter, Keegan Murray, Evan Mobley, Jarrett Allen

Bench: Ty Jerome, Caris LeVert, Max Strus, Harrison Barnes, Damian Jones

Why would the Kings do this?

The Kings would do this to give De’Aaron Fox a star running mate in the backcourt. Although they would miss the production of Murray, Barnes, and Huerter, the Kings would love to have Mitchell, especially during the playoffs. Fox, Mitchell, and Sabonis would be a powerhouse trio against teams like the Suns, Nuggets, and Warriors. This could be their possible starting lineup and bench:

Starters: De’Aaron Fox, Donovan Mitchell, Isaac Okoro, Trey Lyles, Domantas Sabonis

Bench: Davion Mitchell, Malik Monk, Chris Duarte, Chimezie Metu, JaVale McGee

Next. Grade the Trade: Cavaliers trade Mitchell for peanuts in blockbuster proposal. dark

Should the Kings and Cavaliers make this trade?