The Cavs aren’t perfect.
Anyone who has watched the Cavs since LeBron James most recently left knows that. The first year after his departure they won only 19 games. The next year though, cut short by Covid-19, they also won 19 games. In the 2020-21 season, the Cavs won a three-year high of 22 games. It’s clear to see that just based on winning alone, the Cavs have struggled. All of this losing has led them to get some pretty solid draft picks. Collin Sexton was drafted 8th overall in 2018. He was not a product of losing, since the Cavs held the 8th pick because of a trade with the Boston Celtics for Kyrie Irving. However, after that poor first season, the Cavs got the 5th pick and selected Darius Garland. Then after another year of bad play, Isaac Okoro was selected with the 5th overall pick. 22 wins later and the Cavs have the 3rd selection in this month’s draft. It’s likely if they hold onto the pick, they’ll select between Jalen Green and Evan Mobley. They have a great young core built up, but what has it amounted to? Three straight years of awful seasons. Is there some roster rearranging that needs to be done?
There are a few names that have been circling around in the rumor mill. Names like Kevin Love, Cedi Osman, Larry Nance Jr., Taurean Prince and newly added Collin Sexton. All or none of these names could be moved in trades this offseason.
Kevin Love should be moved if possible. He is getting paid $60.2 million for the next two seasons. There will be very few teams who would even consider trading for a contract like that, even less when they realize it’s for an injury-riddled 32-year-old Kevin Love. It’s likely that the Cavs will buy out Kevin Love and he will sign with a contender.
Cedi Osman is a backup SF. The Cavs used him in different ways this year. There were some games when he played heavy minutes and some where he didn’t take off the warm-ups. He is going to be making around $8 million for the next three years. There will likely be some teams interested in Osman’s services and for good reason. He can be a steady bench contributor for any team. I just don’t feel he’s right for the Cavs. They can give his minutes to someone else, like Lamar Stevens or Dylan Windler.
Larry Nance Jr. is one of the most sought-after trade assets out there right now. If the Cavs made him fully available, nearly every team would come knocking. He is a 28-year-old PF that was in contention for defensive player of the year until he got injured. He is an Ohio native whose father also played for the Cavs. It would hurt to see him go, but for the right price, I would say that he is available for trade.
Taurean Prince was just traded for at last year’s trade deadline. He was essentially just a throw-in from the Nets in order to make salaries match. His play is what shocked me last year. He is a professional bucket getter. He knows his role and does it well. He can come off the bench and give you 10-20 points a night in 20+ minutes. He isn’t the most efficient scorer, but he can score well. I think for the right price the Cavs would consider trading him, but there aren’t many teams that are likely going to be willing to part with much for him. Prince could be used in a package with some other players to score the Cavs a more established veteran.
Collin Sexton has been the face of the Cavs franchise for the past three years. He is an excellent scorer. He has improved his PPG for the last three seasons and is up to 24.3 PPG this past season. He can roll out of bed and score 20 points. That is something that very few players have the ability to do in the NBA. However, he is due for a contract extension soon and will likely get near max money. Jarrett Allen is another player who is soon going to ink a new deal. Do the Cavs really want to lock in a lot of money and run it back with the same team that barely won more than 20 games?
What needs to be done is the Cavs should trade Cedi Osman and Taurean Prince for a backup PG and a second-round pick if possible. Or, just find the best possible package for those two players either individually or as a tandem. Kevin Love should be bought out that way his minutes can be given to whatever new player the Cavs draft. Larry Nance Jr. should be kept at all costs. Collin Sexton should start the season in a Cavs uniform. If they don’t turn things around by the trade deadline then Sexton should be made available again and the Cavs should blow it up next offseason.
This offseason should be spent making small moves to fortify the bench bunch and potentially acquire some extra draft picks for this month’s draft. The Cavs should keep the third overall pick and run it back one more time, with the addition of maybe a backup PG and a shooter or two. Let’s not forget the Cavs struggled to stay healthy last year and if fully healthy they could make a push for the play-in tournament which has been re-instated for next year. No matter what the Cavs do this offseason, the future looks bright and the playoffs should be right around the corner!
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