The Cleveland Cavaliers had a couple of key needs heading into this summer. The biggest questions were already answered; they have star power, they have a defensive backbone and they have young talent trending up. They needed shooting, they needed out-of-position rebounding, and they needed a two-way option to start at small forward.
The problem for Cleveland was that they had very few resources to use in addressing those needs. They chose to use what they had to aggressively pursue shooting upgrades, adding Max Strus, Georges Niang and Ty Jerome. That should help them space the floor and not be constricted in the way that the New York Knicks squeezed the life out of them.
Their decision on the rebounding need appears to be internal improvement, although Tristan Thompson could earn spot minutes in certain situations. That leaves just one major need that the Cavaliers haven’t yet addressed this offseason in any way.
The 6’5″ Max Strus is most likely to start at small forward, with Caris LeVert and Isaac Okoro in line to back him up. The Cavaliers may not have had many options to add a true 3-and-D forward to fill that slot, but they also clearly haven’t addressed that need.
Thankfully for Cleveland, there are a few such players that could be available in the trade market. The league has somewhat frozen as it awaits the resolution of trade demands from Damian Lillard and James Harden, but the Cavs should try to break in if they see a deal out there worth making.
Let’s look at a recent trade that was pitched for Cleveland and see how it might help them fill this final need, and if it’s worth the price.