Cavaliers Rumors: 3 trades to send Cavs' star to the Southwest

Jarrett Allen, Cleveland Cavaliers and Dereck Lively II, Dallas Mavericks
Jarrett Allen, Cleveland Cavaliers and Dereck Lively II, Dallas Mavericks / Tim Heitman/GettyImages
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Trade No. 2: The New Orleans Pelicans

The New Orleans Pelicans have long been linked to Jarrett Allen in trade rumors, and with good reason. Zion Williamson is neither a floor-spacer nor a plus defender, so when he plays at the 4 the Pelicans need to pair him either with a stretch-5 or an elite rim protector.

Jonas Valanciunas is one of the league's best rebounders and a force on the block, but he doesn't fit either box of what the Pelicans need at the 5. They need to find another option, and Allen's paint protection makes him an attractive trade candidate for New Orleans.

Here is a relatively simply trade offer the Pelicans could send to the Cavaliers:

Allen to Pelicans simple trade

The Pelicans would land their starting center without significantly altering their rotation; Allen would step in for Valanciunas, and Dyson Daniels is relegated to a minor role with both Herbert Jones and Trey Murphy back in the lineup.

The Cavaliers would get a solid center to either start or bring off the bench, and his deal expires after this season. Dyson Daniels is a player who could legitimately develop into a long-time starter at either guard position; if and when the Cavs move on from Donovan Mitchell, he could be a phenomenal replacement to bring his defensive ability to pair with Garland.

The 2027 first-round pick is the crown jewel of this deal, however. The Milwaukee Bucks have a lot of downside risk in their future, and 2027 is far enough away that Khris Middleton could be retired and Damian Lillard will be 36 years old. That pick holds a lot of upside, either for the Cavs to keep or to use as the centerpiece in another trade of their own.