NBA trade rumors continue to swirl around the defending NBA Champion Cleveland Cavaliers. The team is doing their best to keep pace with the Golden State Warriors, and the latest news from the rumor mill is hinting at a possible three-for-one swap with the Sacramento Kings.
The website NBA Trade Rumors is reporting that the Cavs may be considering a deal that would send power forward Kevin Love to the Kings. In return, Cleveland would receive three players: small forward Rudy Gay, center Willie Cauley-Stein, and shooting guard Ben McLemore.
Three of the four players mentioned in this trade proposal have been the subject of numerous NBA trade rumors for the last few months, so their inclusion in this scenario is not a surprise. The rumored offer also satisfies all NBA trade and salary cap rules, so if it is agreed upon, the league would approve such a transaction.
The Cavaliers would be bringing in three new faces if this deal comes to fruition — let’s see how they would fit with LeBron James, Kyrie Irving, and company.
Rudy Gay is an established scorer in the NBA, but he does play the same position as LeBron James. There could be lineup combinations where the Cavs would play James and Gay at the same time, but for the most part, Rudy Gay would be a backup in Cleveland and likely play limited minutes as a designated scorer off the bench.
Willie Cauley-Stein is an intriguing talent (especially defensively), and he would seem to be a solid addition to a Cavs’ lineup that has plenty of offensive firepower. Cauley-Stein, like Rudy Gay, may have to play off the bench if he came to Cleveland. However, his mobility could allow him to play power forward, and in that case, he would battle Channing Frye for the starting power forward spot.
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Ben McLemore has had a disappointing NBA career after coming into the league with high expectations in 2013, but a change of scenery is probably what he needs to right the ship. Playing with LeBron James and a championship-caliber team would appear to be a winning formula for getting the best out of McLemore. If Cleveland re-signs J.R. Smith, McLemore would not play very much, but if Smith does not return, McLemore would become a key part of the Cavs’ second unit.
It certainly seems that going from Sacramento to Cleveland would be good for the careers of Gay, Cauley-Stein, and McLemore, but would they also be able to make the Cavaliers a better team? Probably not. All of the Kings players involved in this NBA trade rumor have talent and ability, but they would all be part of the supporting cast in Cleveland. If the goal is to keep up with the star-studded Golden State Warriors, acquiring three “pretty good” players in exchange for Kevin Love is not going to help that cause.
Many of the NBA trade rumors that have come out this summer have revolved around superstar center DeMarcus Cousins, but this one has Sacramento holding onto their enigmatic big man. Kevin Love would become the No. 2 scoring option behind Cousins in this trade scenario, and the Cousins-Love duo would provide a great deal of production for the Kings.
Keeping Cousins and dealing for Love would make Cauley-Stein expendable. Ben McLemore is slated for backup duties again this season, and Rudy Gay has not been a good fit in Sacramento and has been reported by SB Nation to have requested a trade. It seems that Sacramento would like to get this deal done, but they would have to convince the Cavs that the trade would be in their best interest — and that would be a very hard sell indeed.
Current NBA trade rumors are pointing toward a potential deal between the Cleveland Cavaliers and Sacramento Kings. While this is not a bad offer for the Cavs, it doesn’t provide the impact that the team is looking for. The Kings would benefit from the acquisition of Kevin Love, but as the old saying goes, “it takes two to tango.” Cleveland would not be in the dancing mood if this is Sacramento’s best offer for Kevin Love.
[Featured Image by Rich Pedroncelli/AP Images]