After finishing the 2018-19 NBA season as one of the worst teams in the Eastern Conference, rumors started to swirl around the Cleveland Cavaliers. The Cavaliers may have refused to undergo a full-scale rebuild in the post-LeBron James era, but their roster, as currently constructed, doesn’t have what it takes to contend for the NBA championship, or even earn a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. Though Kevin Love has yet to become available on the trade market, several Cavaliers veteran players are expected to be moved before the 2020 February NBA trade deadline.
According to Fansided’s Factory of Sadness, the “most likely candidate” to be shipped out of Cleveland before or during the 2019-20 NBA season is Cavaliers center Tristan Thompson. With Thompson entering the final year of his contract, it will best for the Cavaliers to trade him before the 2020 February NBA trade deadline than to lose him as an unrestricted free agent without getting anything return.
Once he becomes officially available on the trading block, Thompson is expected to receive plenty of interest from NBA teams who want to boost their chance of winning the NBA championship, while preserving their salary cap space for the summer of 2020.
As Fansided’s Factory of Sadness noted, the Cavaliers aren’t likely to demand much in return for Tristan Thompson, and interested teams could acquire him for a trade package that includes “a couple of second-round picks.”
“Realistically, it wouldn’t be all that surprising to see someone like Thompson dealt for a couple of second-round picks. Cavs’ fans would like to think a ‘name’ like Thompson might be able to get a first round selection for someone like TT, but unless the Cavs are willing to take on a bad contract in return, it’s unlikely. Additionally, the Cavs are set to finally get out of the salary cap dungeon in the summer of 2020. The new found financial flexibility may make the organization hesitant to take on another bad deal just to add another late-round pick.”
Trading a couple of second-round picks for a player of Tristan Thompson’s caliber is definitely a no-brainer, especially for NBA teams who need a frontcourt boost. Thompson would give legitimate title contenders a dominant presence under the basket and a double-double machine. Last season, the 28-year-old center averaged 10.9 points and 10.2 rebounds, while shooting 52.9 percent from the field.
One of the potential landing spots for Tristan Thompson is the Boston Celtics. According to a previous The Inquisitr article, the Celtics and the Cavaliers could explore a trade deal involving Thompson, Jordan Clarkson, and Gordon Hayward.