Forget about Free Agency, Let’s Talk Trades

Since for some strange reason, the Cavs were handcuffed from making any moves in Free Agency since about Thursday-ish (a little after 9pm), a lot of the first, second, and third tier Free Agents are off the market.

Instead of throwing our capspace at RFAs and UFAs that won’t add anything to the roster next year, now’s the time to talk trades.

The Cavs have a TON of assets. From the LeBron S&T alone, they have a $16mil TPE, 2 first rounders, and 2 second rounders. Plus they have $9mil in capspace from FAs having gone (LeBron, Z, and Shaq). And they have Delonte’s cap-friendly contract ($4.6mil, with only $500k guaranteed) to dole out too. Plus, I’m fairly certain that no one is untouchable on the team, except for maaaaaybe JJ Hickson.

Now that we have our assets in order, let’s look at the teams that are teetering on the necessity to clear space before the new CBA and rebuild. The teams that come to mind are Philadelphia, Memphis, Minnesota, Detroit, Indiana, New Orleans, and Golden State. The Cavs have lots to offer (see above) to teams trying to sell their franchises (NO and GSW), penny-pinching teams (IND, PHI, and MEM), and teams that seem to make a lot of bad choices (MIN and DET).

If you take the best players from all these teams, that would make one really solid team. Hell, even if you take a handful of the top guys from that group, it would be a solid team. What I’m saying is, the Cavs need to take a handful of those guys. Except for GSW, none of them play in substantially bigger markets than Cleveland, so we don’t have that problem (Philly is bigger, but for some reason doesn’t like pro basketball, as I regurgitate this opinion from a Bill Simmons podcast).

The Cavs, right now, are in desperate need of a dynamic scorer and an athletic center. Not just because those are two commonsense jobs every team needs, but because they would be especially needed on Byron Scott’s new running offense.

Oddly enough, my simplest proposal takes both of those roles from only 1 of these teams: Memphis. As far as I can tell (and have been told by a well-versed Grizzlies fan), for some reason Memphis’s two best players are available for trade. Probably because Memphis signed Gay to a huge deal, and they have a history of being “trade friendly,” as it were.

So I say, the Cavs need to try to pry away one or both of either Marc Gasol and OJ Mayo. We need a versatile big man, and Gasol would be fantastic playing alongside Varejao, or really any of our other bigs. Hell, he made Zach Randolph look like an all-star last year thanks to him making up for Zach’s defensive lapses.

And Mayo is young and a scorer. We need that. We need that big time. He’s working on his ball-handling in summer league right now, but making him a scoring SG would be a great plan to me.

The Cavs can package anything they want to get those two. They can even pay for both with part (not even ALL) of their TPE.

If that doesn’t work, I say the Cavs need to work on stripping some of those other teams of their players in exchange for our assets. Even though we have a few players under contract for a while (Mo & Antawn, specifically), the rest of the contracts on the roster are much more flexible and put the Cavs in not-so-dire straights over the next few years.

And if we can’t get players, then we gotta turn those assets into some lottery picks, because on San Antonio can strike gold in the second round.

Do you think if I wrote this post in Comic Sans, Dan Gilbert and Chris Grant would take it more seriously?

Read more from Amin Vafa at his blog The Offense/Defense Balance and follow him on twitter @azv321

Brendan Bowers

About Brendan Bowers

I am the founding editor of StepienRules.com. I am also a content strategist and social media manager with Electronic Merchant Systems in Cleveland. My work has been published in SLAM Magazine, KICKS Magazine, The Locker Room Magazine, Cleveland.com, BleacherReport.com, InsideFacebook.com and elsewhere. I've also written a lot of articles that have been published here.

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