The Cleveland Cavaliers appear to be on the right track toward becoming a championship contender again after claiming the fourth seed in the Eastern Conference this season. But the roster they currently possess isn’t necessarily the one they will take to training camp at the end of the summer.
They have reportedly been receiving many trade offers for Jarrett Allen, their starting center who has become a big part of their success.
“Despite a public declaration that they weren’t planning to make any sweeping roster changes in the aftermath of a disappointing first-round playoff exit, the Cavs continue to receive trade offers for All-Star center Jarrett Allen, sources tell cleveland.com,” wrote Chris Fedor.
However, the Cavs haven’t been interested in moving the 25-year-old.
“None of the trade overtures have been appealing enough and thus far the Cavs are telling rival teams, ‘Thanks but no thanks,'” Fedor continued. “Some of the packages have involved multiple players. Others have been more pick-centric, allowing Cleveland to recoup some lost assets following last summer’s blockbuster trade for second-team All-NBA guard Donovan Mitchell. There are also ones combining picks and players.”
In two seasons and change with Cleveland, Allen has given the team a legitimate inside presence, especially defensively and on the boards. He averaged 9.8 rebounds and 1.2 blocked shots a game this season, and last season, he made his first-ever All-Star team.
While he isn’t a real offensive threat or option, he’s a great finisher at and around the rim, which led to him putting up 16.1 points a game last season and 14.3 points a game this season.
“Sources say the Dallas Mavericks, who own the No. 10 pick in Thursday’s NBA Draft and have sharpshooter Tim Hardaway Jr. — a player the Cavs discussed at the February trade deadline — were one team that recently reached out about Allen’s availability,” wrote Fedor. “While it’s unclear what was offered, the Mavericks have been seeking a pick-and-roll partner for guards Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving
“Allen is viewed as one of the league’s best pick-and-roll bigs while also consistently ranking near the top of the screen assist category.
“Toronto could be another team to watch. It has had past interest in Allen and starting center Jakob Poeltl is headed for unrestricted free agency. The Atlanta Hawks are one of the most active teams in league-wide trade talks, looking to declutter their wing spot by dangling De’Andre Hunter. Even though they already have Clint Capela — an Allen facsimile — the Swiss center is reportedly available, and the Hawks could be looking at a series of moves this summer.”
There are strong arguments to be made as to why Cleveland should keep its core together. It has a rather young roster, and continuity is very important when a team such as the Cavs is on an upward trajectory. The Denver Nuggets, who just won the NBA championship, are a great example of a squad that didn’t break up its core after some disappointing playoff losses, and that patience has paid off big time.
On the other hand, the Cavs do need an upgrade at the wing spot, more knockdown 3-point shooters and perhaps better backcourt depth. Ricky Rubio is a backup point guard they seem to like, but he is a very inefficient player offensively.