Center Andre Drummond and the Cleveland Cavaliers have mutually come to an agreement that the big man has played his final game in Cleveland. The 27-year-old is averaging 17.5 points per game along with 13.5 rebounds. Although those numbers would indicate Drummond is playing well, after the first 10 or so games of the season, he has regressed tremendously in terms of decision making and it appears as if he had the tendency to give up when things weren’t going his way. So, it’s safe to say that this news has come as a surprise to no one.
However, the Cavaliers still face an uphill battle in terms of numbers. Drummond is currently playing on an expiring contract worth $28.7 million, so making salaries match will be difficult and they would need to take back around $23 million. The Toronto Raptors are rumored to be in talks to acquire the big, but again, making the numbers match will probably require the two teams to bring in an additional franchise. To be frank, the Cavaliers may need two teams in order to unload Drummond regardless of who wants him. The talks aren’t considered to be serious quite yet, so there is no clear indication as to what or who the Raptors would be offering, but NBA Executives have previously made it known that they are of the belief that Drummond would bring the Cavaliers no more than 2nd round picks.
Considering how much SG Isaac Okoro has been struggling to start the season, the lackluster play of SF Cedi Osman and Kevin Porter Jr. no longer being on the roster, the team has a real need for a small forward and the Raptors have five on the roster, the most lucrative being OG Anunoby, but it is doubtful Toronto includes him in the package. Toronto has but one center on its roster and it is unknown if they would be willing to deal C Aron Baynes and forfeit a backup to Drummond.
Outside of the Raptors, other teams have shown interest in Drummond. Some of which include the Brooklyn Nets and Dallas Mavericks, but both teams do not appear to be interested in trading for the big, rather signing him if the team bought out Drummond. The Cavaliers have until the 25th of March to move the disgruntled center, but a bulk of the time left will surely be dedicated to figuring out the numbers. After attending a game in a hoodie that read “Farewell,” the team must be prepared to get whatever they can for him before he walks; he has already got one foot out of the door.
Given how poor of an attitude Drummond has, it is imperative that the Cavaliers move him before he begins to corrupt the locker room. C Jarett Allen has played tremendously thus far and is a much better fit with the Cavs young core. We all knew the day was coming, it was mostly a matter of when and who. But removing Drummond from play, for whatever reason, may very well end up being a great thing for the team. At this point, even a few second-round picks and a role player would suffice. It may not seem like much now, but those assets could be packaged together and used to obtain pieces that fit the team.