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Report: Tyronn Lue Stalled George Hill Trade Because He Didn’t Want to Move Channing Frye
- Updated: January 31, 2018
The continued discussions between the Cleveland Cavaliers and Sacramento Kings about a possible trade involving veteran guard George Hill have so far been less than fruitful for different reasons, including reported buyout considerations. However, it appears that another reason stems from the reluctance of Cavs head coach Tyronn Lue to give up a veteran reserve, center Channing Frye.
Dave McMenamin of ESPN.com offered a window into Lue’s reported reasoning:
“One trade scenario that almost came to fruition, as reported by ESPN and other outlets, would have sent Frye and Iman Shumpert to the Sacramento Kings for guard George Hill,” according McMenamin. “Cavs coach Tyronn Lue was against including Frye in the Hill trade, league sources told ESPN, because he deems the stretch-5 too valuable to include in a move that does not result in a clear-cut improvement to Cleveland’s championship chances.”
Given the serious injury suffered by Cavaliers forward Kevin Love on Tuesday night, the likelihood of including Frye in a trade may have diminished even more. Frye scored 20 points coming off the bench in the loss to Detroit and is expected to see more action in Love’s absence, though he fully understands that he could be dealt away:
“I still might get traded,” Frye said. “So, while I’m here, what am I supposed to do? Help us win. Make sure we’re playing championship-level basketball and at the end of the day, if I’m not playing or in the rotation, I want to play and I want to help the team get to a chip and I want to play in a championship game.”
Two years ago, Frye was traded by the Orlando Magic to the Cavaliers. The thought of again being moved in a trade deadline deal doesn’t faze Frye:
“I’ve been traded before,” Frye said. “What am I going to do? Listen, my checks transfer to Sacramento. I think at the end of the day, we have pretty good communication, and business is business. I want to be here to win. My main goal here, the only goal that everybody should have here, is to win a chip. So your personal feelings of what you think is best for you doesn’t matter. At all. If you’re not here to win a championship, you need to get the f— out of here.”
Frye’s philosophy also is indicative of a veteran attitude that’s focused on the team, not the player:
“Whatever they have to do to win, they got to do that,” Frye said. “There’s no personal feelings. And I think that’s something that people don’t understand when they’re here. They’re like, ‘We’ll, this is about me.’ No. It’s not about it. It’s not. Absolutely not. If they feel like George Hill or if they feel like Anthony Davis or whoever else is out there they’re trying to get is going to upgrade them? Do it. I understand. So there’s no personal or hurt feelings. I want to be here. I want to be able to help and just let me know what I need to be able to do to play in the championship or help us win.”
The Cavaliers have until the Feb. 8 trade deadline to pull the trigger on any deal, whether that involves Frye or other Cavs players. Who they acquire could help determine if they’re able to reach the NBA Finals for the fourth consecutive year.