There’s still a few days before 2018 free agency starts, and the Cleveland Cavaliers are expected to make a huge upgrade on their roster to convince LeBron James to opt into the final year of his contract or sign a long-term deal. Though the Cavaliers show no interest in trading Kevin Love, they remain optimistic that they could acquire NBA superstars who could be available on the trade market. One of their potential targets is Kemba Walker of the Charlotte Hornets.
According to Joe Vardon of the Cleveland Plain Dealer, the Cavaliers have inquired to the Hornets about the availability of Kemba Walker. As of now, it remains unknown if the Cavaliers can convince the Hornets to make a deal, but Charlotte’s first offseason move could be a hint that Walker is on the move. The Hornets recently shocked the league when they sent Dwight Howard to the Brooklyn Nets for Timofey Mozgov, two second-round picks, and cash consideration.
The deal is undeniably a head-scratcher for Hornets fans, but most people believe it is a sign that the Hornets plan to undergo a full-scale rebuild. According to Fansided’s Swarm And Sting, if the Hornets decide to rebuild the team, their next move would be trading Kemba Walker to title contenders like the Cleveland Cavaliers.
In a suggested trade scenario, the Cavaliers would send Jordan Clarkson, Cedi Osman, Kyle Korver, and the No. 8 pick (Collin Sexton) to the Hornets for Kemba Walker and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist. The trade works on ESPN‘s NBA Trade Machine.
“If the Hornets are set on trading their all-star, this is a solid return, especially for a player who will be an unrestricted free agent next offseason. Charlotte would receive two young pieces in Clarkson and Osman to go along with whoever they select with the 8th pick. Kyle Korver is only a part of this deal to make the salary match. It is likely that he and the Hornets would reach a buyout, giving him the freedom to sign with a contender.”
The proposed trade deal will be beneficial for both the Cavaliers and the Hornets, as it will help them fill the needs to improve on their roster. Jordan Clarkson and Cedi Osman are two young players who could be part of the Hornets’ long-term plan, while the recently drafted Collin Sexton will be Charlotte’s point guard of the future. Kyle Korver may only serve as salary filler, but he could mentor the Hornets’ young players on making better shots.
The potential acquisition of Kemba Walker could strengthen the Cavaliers’ chance of convincing LeBron James to stay. Walker will provide the much-need help for James on the offensive end of the floor, something the Cavaliers have been missing since Kyrie Irving was traded to the Boston Celtics.