Report: Cavs Seeking to Trade For Established Star Veteran Regardless of LeBron's Intentions | Cavaliers Nation
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Report: Cavs Seeking to Trade For Established Star Veteran Regardless of LeBron’s Intentions

Kemba Walker and Kawhi Leonard

With all the talk surrounding LeBron James‘ future with the Cleveland Cavaliers, it is easy to forget that he is not, in fact, the only player on the team.

While the vast majority of the media’s focus has been on James since the Cavs’ season ended in a 2018 NBA Finals loss, the team’s front office is also very focused on the rest of its roster.

According to Joe Vardon of Cleveland.com, the Cavaliers are looking to upgrade their current roster whether James decides to re-sign or not:

“The Cavs have been signaling (strongly, in some cases) that they’re looking to upgrade their team from the group that was swept out of the Finals this month, whether James stays or goes.

“They are taking calls from teams looking to move up in the draft via trade, and are seeking proven NBA vets whose presence would both improve the roster and be enticing to James.

“They’ve also been ‘obsessed’ with the draft since acquiring Brooklyn’s pick from the Celtics last summer for Kyrie Irving, so using it to take a player for themselves is of course a very real possibility.”

He continued to write that the Cavs have already inquired about disgruntled San Antonio Spurs star Kawhi Leonard and added that the Charlotte Hornets’ Kemba Walker could also be a potential target.

There is no doubt that James’ uncertain future has an impact on what the Cavs want to do in terms of potential trades, free agency, and the draft. Still, Vardon asserted that the Cavs wont let that get in the way of their interest in making moves:

“Multiple sources, however, have indicated the Cavs would look to improve (read, continue to spend) while James makes his decision.”

Finally, Vardon discussed the difficult cap situation Cavs general manager Koby Altman and team owner Dan Gilbert currently find themselves in. Even if James were to leave this summer, the Cavs are still expected to be over next season’s salary cap. That makes it hard for them to be a big player in free agency. However, that could all change next summer.

“Depending on how the next 12 months go, Cleveland could enter the 2019 free-agency season with significant cap space, with the potential for the contracts of [Kevin] Love, [J.R.] Smith, [George] Hill, and [Kyle] Korver to all be off the books,” he wrote.

The near future for the Cavs is quite uncertain. Whether or not they will be able to retain James and trade for an already established star or lose James and draft what they hope is a future star in the upcoming NBA draft remains to be seen.

One thing is clear already though: they seem committed to avoid becoming the victim of another possible James departure.

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