2 way-too-early trades Cavs must pull off in 2023-24 NBA season

The Cleveland Cavaliers had a successful 2022-23 NBA season, finishing with a 51-31 record and clinching the East’s fourth seed in the playoffs. However, with the 2023-24 season on the horizon, the Cavs must make some bold moves to improve their chances of winning a championship. In this article, we will discuss two way-too-early trades that the Cavs must pull off in the 2023-24 NBA season.

Summary of the Cavs’ 2022-23 NBA season

The Cavs had a successful 2022-23 NBA season. Their 51-win total was their highest since 2017, and they returned to the postseason for the first time since LeBron James’ second departure. Recall also that the Cavs made a blockbuster move to bring Donovan Mitchell to the team in exchange for Ochai Agbaji, Collin Sexton, Lauri Markkanen, and future picks. Despite this trade, the Cavaliers still had some assets left, including Caris LeVert’s expiring contract, which can be a quality salary anchor.

Here we will look at two way-too-early trades the Cleveland Cavaliers must pull off in the 2023-24 NBA season.

1. Trade for Myles Turner and Buddy Hield

Cavs receive: Myles Turner and Buddy Hield
Pacers receive: Jarrett Allen, Isaac Okoro, Ricky Rubio, Sam Merrill, and a 2030 first-round pick swap

Recent reports have indicated that the Indiana Pacers are open to discussing a trade involving Buddy Hield. This should grab the attention of any team in need of reliable three-point shooting.

Over the past five years, Hield has consistently averaged 3.6 three-pointers per game. He shoots an impressive 40.0 percent from beyond the arc. Moreover, his 2023-24 salary of $19.3 million is quite reasonable, accounting for less than 15 percent of the salary cap. This makes him an attractive addition to the Cavs, This is especially true after their disappointing 4-1 loss to the New York Knicks in the first round of the 2023 playoffs. Remember that their offensive struggles were evident in that series.

Recall that the Cavs managed to score only 94.2 points per game against the Knicks. In addition, the pairing of Evan Mobley and Jarrett Allen in the frontcourt appeared to be ineffective in the long term. To address this, either Mobley needs to develop a three-point shot or play alongside a frontcourt partner who can shoot from long range. This is where Myles Turner’s skills come into play.

With both Turner and Mobley on the roster, the Cavs can maintain their strong defensive identity. This made them one of the top regular-season teams in the 2022-23 season. Additionally, Turner’s ability to stretch the floor with his outside shooting would significantly improve their offensive capabilities.

A presumed starting lineup consisting of Darius Garland, Donovan Mitchell, Buddy Hield, Evan Mobley, and Myles Turner would address many of the team’s needs, although there may still be concerns about perimeter defense.

So, what’s in it for the Indiana Pacers besides accommodating Hield’s trade request? They would have the opportunity to improve their position in the 2030 NBA Draft. This may not seem enticing now but could yield valuable assets in the future. Moreover, 25-year-old Jarrett Allen could rejuvenate their center position, providing an ideal target for pick-and-roll plays and alley-oops. On paper, he would complement Tyrese Haliburton’s playmaking abilities. Isaac Okoro would also offer potential depth on the wing, making this trade beneficial for both sides.

2. Trade for Dorian Finney-Smith

Cavs receive: Dorian Finney-Smith
Nets receive: Isaac Okoro, Dean Wade, 2025 second-round pick and 2025 second-round pick

The Cavs learned a valuable lesson during last year’s playoff run when they realized their lack of wing shooting to complement the Mobley-Allen frontcourt duo. This is precisely why Max Strus and Georges Niang are now part of the Cavs’ roster.

However, if the Cavs do not make further changes to their lineup, their next playoff appearance could highlight a deficiency in perimeter defense. This is crucial for competing at the highest level. Max Strus is not known for his lockdown defense, and Georges Niang’s defensive abilities are best left unmentioned.

Despite the Cavs’ active offseason, there remains a need for an upgrade at the wing position. The Brooklyn Nets’ Dorian Finney-Smith could be the solution they need. He has the agility to defend guards effectively and the strength to hold his ground against larger forwards.

Furthermore, Finney-Smith boasts a track record of being a dependable three-point shooter. After all, he averaged 1.9 triples per game and had an impressive 38.9 percent success rate between the 2019-20 and 2021-22 seasons. If he can rediscover that form, the Cavs could greatly benefit from this trade.

Looking Ahead

The Cleveland Cavaliers had a successful 2022-23 NBA season, but they must make some bold moves to improve their chances of winning a championship in the 2023-24 NBA season. Trading for Myles Turner, Buddy Hield, and Dorian Finney-Smith would be two way-too-early trades that the Cavs must pull off. These trades would give the Cavs some much-needed depth and talent. This would put them one step closer to winning a championship.

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2 way-too-early trades Grizzlies must pull off in 2023-24 NBA season

There is so much uncertainty clouding the Memphis Grizzlies heading into the 2023-24 NBA season due to Ja Morant’s 25-game suspension to begin the campaign. Memphis actually had a stellar 20-5 record without Morant in 2021-22, but that was an anomaly. This past season, the narrative that the Grizzlies are just as good without Morant was nixed as they went just 11-10 with the star point guard not in uniform. Nonetheless, it seems like the Grizzlies star is ready to move forward and just play ball.

The Grizzlies already made an offseason move by acquiring Marcus Smart from the Boston Celtics. Smart should be a valuable addition to this team that needs veteran toughness. The 2021-22 Defensive Player of the Year could be the one to bring back Grit-and-Grind to this Grizzlies franchise. Still, Memphis might need to make more moves to further upgrade its roster as it navigates through the first third of the season without Morant.

With that said, here are two way-too-early trades the Grizzlies must pull off in the 2023-24 season.

Grizzlies receive: OG Anunoby

Raptors receive: Luke Kennard, Santi Aldama, 2024 first round pick

The Toronto Raptors are poised to usher in a new era following the firing of Nick Nurse and the departure of Fred VanVleet. As such, trade rumors surrounding its veterans like Pascal Siakam and OG Anunoby have floated around this 2023 offseason. Siakam could also be an intriguing target for Taylor Jenkins’ squad, but the price to acquire the All-NBA power forward will be steep. With that, the Grizzlies could target their other forward OG Anunoby, who should be attainable at a cheaper price.

With this, the Grizzlies give up Luke Kennard, Santi Aldama, and their 2024 first-round pick to acquire the All-Defensive forward from Toronto. Anunoby had one of the better years of his career this past 2022-23 season. In 67 games, the 6-foot-7 forward averaged 16.8 points and 5.0 rebounds while shooting 47.6 percent from the field and 38.7 percent from three. He also led the league in steals per game (1.9).

Anunoby has become one of the better 3-and-D players in the NBA. But while he functions best as a stand-still shooter on offense, the 26-year-old has improved enough to become a decent shot creator off the dribble.

Nonetheless, adding Anunoby would give the Grizzlies a devastating defensive lineup that features the last two DPOYs in Smart and Jaren Jackson Jr. along with a rock solid perimeter defender in Desmond Bane. His presence should give the Grizzlies enough leeway to win games on the defensive end while they wait for the return of Ja Morant sometime in December.

Grizzlies receive: Dorian Finney-Smith

Nets receive: Luke Kennard, two second round picks

If the Grizzlies are unable to land Anunoby, a similar, yet cheaper option would be Dorian Finney-Smith from the Brooklyn Nets. It remains to be seen whether Brooklyn will actually look to compete this season after they traded Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving during last season’s trade deadline. However, they did acquire a rising star in Mikal Bridges, who could breakout as this upcoming season’s Most Improved Player.

Nonetheless, the Grizzlies could try to give Nets GM Sean Marks a call on Finney-Smith’s availability. It shouldn’t take much to acquire the 30-year-old. Perhaps a package of Luke Kennard and a couple of second rounders would be enough for the Nets to part ways with the 6-foot-7 wing.

Finney-Smith carries a lot of what Anunoby can bring to the table in terms of defense and three-point shooting. DFS’ three-point shooting did dip in 2022-23 to just 33.7 percent, but he did shoot over 39 percent from beyond the arc the two seasons before.

If Finney-Smith is available, Memphis should really consider going after him.

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