Several Cleveland Cavaliers trades could be coming as the NBA trade deadline approaches. Not only could Cleveland trade away some major pieces of their roster, but they could also be involved in a blockbuster deal that sends Carmelo Anthony from the Denver Nuggets to the New Jersey Nets. In an attempt to re-build the roster in the post-LeBron James era, it appears as though Cleveland may be about to tear down the current roster.
According to ESPN, new trade interest in Cavs players revolves around forward Antawn Jamison. This might be a bit surprising because Jamison still has another year left on his current contract, but at the same time he could become a scoring asset on a new team.
Jamison has been averaging around 30 minutes per game this season, putting up 16.1 points and 5.9 rebounds per night. Could it be possible that Jamison might be traded back to the Dallas Mavericks, where he played the 2003-04 season after being traded by the Golden State Warriors?
So what are the key assets that Cleveland has at their disposal? The biggest asset could be the trade exception they received from the league when they traded LeBron James to the Miami Heat. That trade exception is worth $14.5 million, meaning they could use it in place of a player in order to bring someone over from another team. If a team is trying to part with a salaried player, they could be willing to send a draft pick (or two) to Cleveland in exchange for that trade exception. This is what could take place in a blockbuster Carmelo Anthony deal.
We reported before how Anderson Varejao is someone who is on the trade block right now, and there are a number of teams that would be very interested in bringing him over. Varejao is one of those players who isn’t a star by himself, but is an extremely good role player who could be coupled with a superstar. He complemented James very well when they were both playing for the Cavs, and he could provide that defense, hustle, and rebounding to another team trying to find a complement player.
The other asset the Cavaliers could part with is point guard Mo Williams, who has been an All-Star in the past, and could regain that stature for a new team. If the Cavaliers are really tearing down the whole roster, they should try to trade him while his value is at its highest. The Cavaliers have a lot of cap room, meaning they could re-position themselves for a run at key free agents in a season or two. The idea of stock-piling draft picks is a good one as well because everyone has seen how well it worked for Oklahoma City.
If the Cavs start trading every good player they have, will the fans continue to come to games? Or is their sell-out streak going to end in a massive re-building phase?