The NBA offseason is just over a week old and everything is happening. Big names are rumored to be moving. Or wanting to move. Or being threatened to be moved. It’s a crazy offseason and there may be discontent in Cleveland so I say we embrace it and really get nuts.
While the champion Golden State Warriors seem invincible, teams are considering big moves in a pointless attempt to win now or to try and develop young stars for whenever the Warriors dynasty starts to fall apart. As usual, the one team guaranteed to have something to say next season is the one with LeBron James. But after the ’17 Finals, the Cavaliers probably need to make a change.
They started by getting rid of the general manager that helped build the ’16 title team, despite LeBron James’ wishes. Possibly because LeBron is thinking about leaving when his contract ends next summer. So what should the Cavs do this season that could keep LeBron happy and give them a contingency plan if he really does leave in 2018? Trade for Jimmy Butler and Kristaps Porzingis.
Kyrie Irving is ready to go so send him to New York for Kristaps Porzingis and… who cares. Somebody. Doesn’t matter. Kyrie grew up across the Hudson River from New York City in New Jersey. He loves playing in Madison Square Garden. The Knicks are guaranteed two seasons of Kyrie Irving who just turned 25. Not that it matters. Phil Jackson could – and probably would – do much worse than Kyrie Irving if he really does trade Porzingis.
So LeBron gets to play with the ultimate stretch-4. Plus, Porzingis’ contract includes a team option that would keep him in Cleveland through 2019. And even if LeBron left after next season, Porzingis might be talked into staying if he can play with Jimmy Butler.
To land Butler the Cavs just have to give up Kevin Love. Love is signed through 2020 just like Butler. Love makes about $4 million more than Butler. The Bulls get a guy who can play with Dwyane Wade and Rajon Rondo for a year. And this is actually the most likely trade to actually take place. You want to throw in a third team to make things complicated? Sure.
They have two guys who could keep them in the playoffs if LeBron leaves next year. Delly comes home. And maybe the Knicks then release Carmelo Anthony and he shows up for a year. Wouldn’t it be sooooo Knicks for a team with Porzingis and Carmelo Anthony to immediately win a championship after they were shipped out of New York?
The best part would be that Kyrie Irving would be enough of a return on Porzingis that Phil Jacksonwouldn’t lose his job. Does anyone know how Kyrie works out of the triangle? I bet well enough to keep James Dolan distracted.
I don’t know if they can beat the Warriors, but the takes would be so blinding it won’t matter. Everyone wins! The only person who might not be happy is Kevin Love and no one really cares about Kevin Love. People only care about Lil’ Kev. And Cleveland will at least bring that t-shirt back when they turn Iman Shumpert into Matthew Dellavedova. I mean, who doesn’t want to see this happen?