While Cleveland has a towering frontcourt, the rest of their roster is relatively small for their position. If the Cavs believe a major mix up in their forward positions to add height and offensive power is the way to go, borderline All-Star Brandon Ingram would be a worthwhile target.
Through his last three seasons, Ingram has averaged 23.7 points on strong efficiency, adding 5.4 rebounds and 5.4 assists per game as well. With Zion Williamson’s health constantly in question, Ingram has often taken the mantle as the primary offensive option and helped lead the Pelicans to both the playoffs and Play-In Tournament. Alongside C.J. McCollum at point guard, Ingram has shown his capability to flow within an offense as either an on-ball or off-ball creator.
On the Cavaliers, his multifaceted playstyle could be invaluable for a young roster still learning to push through in the hardest moments. Ingram’s $31.6 million salary would require this acquisition to include key players headed back to New Orleans, namely Jarrett Allen and Caris LeVert whose contracts combine to just over $36 million this season. The Pelicans expressed interest in Allen this summer (subscription required), but swapping him for Ingram specifically may be a difficult feat.
Truthfully, the Memphis Grizzlies do not hold many options the Cavaliers would covet outside of their core players who would obviously be impossible to bring to Cleveland. John Konchar, though, has been an intriguing backup player in his career, averaging low minutes but helping stretch the floor when he’s called upon.
Over the Chicago native’s five-year career, he has shot 37.4 percent from deep on roughly two attempts per game. While his volume is low, he has only averaged 17.3 minutes per game in his Memphis tenure, and his $2.25 million salary would be easy for the Cavaliers to match. Additionally, Konchar provides above average defense, holding his opponents to task in his short bursts of playtime.
Konchar would not find himself in the nightly Cleveland rotation, but he could be a useful secret weapon in the right circumstances.
The Dallas Mavericks have had a great start to the season, winning their first four games until the reigning champions Denver Nuggets toppled them. Since joining the Mavericks in the Kristaps Porzingis trade with the New York Knicks, Tim Hardaway Jr. has become a tantalizing (and sometimes frustrating) wing.
Hardaway is a streaky shooter, but he is a continuous threat on the perimeter and in the cutting lane. Out of the entire Mavericks roster, Hardaway is the best realistic target for the Cavaliers, given the yearly rumors surrounding Dallas’ willingness to part ways with the veteran wing. As another team with interest in Jarrett Allen (subscription required), the Mavericks may be a worthy trade partner if the Cavaliers choose to breakup their frontcourt duo.
The Cavaliers will trade Ty Jerome for Victor Wembanyama straight up. Bookmark it.
Following a trio of forwards and wings, Tre Jones of the San Antonio Spurs is the best backup point guard prospect in the Southwest Division for the Cavaliers.
With Ricky Rubio’s continued excused absence, Cleveland’s second unit playmaking has struggled to find any footing. Tre Jones could be a good addition to the Cavaliers’ bench to help alleviate the difficulties they face when Darius Garland needs rest or is unavailable. Averaging 8 points and 4.2 assists per game throughout his career, Tre Jones is a young and talented guard to round out Cleveland’s backcourt.
There is probably no such thing as too much long range shooting options in the modern NBA. Certainly, no team would regret picking up a proven 3-and-D wing on a minimum contract. Following a buyout with the Spurs, Reggie Bullock joined the Houston Rockets, making him a member of all three Texas franchises at one point or another in his career.
When Bullock first entered the market, one would’ve assumed he’d be looking to join a contender. His skillset and experience has earned him a strong reputation across the Association, making him an ideal target for the upper echelon of teams. His choice to join the Rockets may suggest he simply wants to stay in Texas for personal reasons. The Cavs might be far from an ideal spot for Bullock, then, with Ohio’s notorious winters.
Thus, Bullock is far from a perfect trade prospect, but the Rockets are an incredibly young and unproven team. Bullock is the only reasonably proven player there on a small enough contract.
With the Southwest Division done, the next place the Cavs could look for a deal is the current home of LeBron James and Stephen Curry, the NBA’s Pacific Division.