In the span of a little more than an hour, the Cavs traded six players and a first-round pick to four teams in three separate deals for four new players. They weren’t playing around with all the drama inside and out of the locker room in the past few weeks.
When the dust settled, the Cavaliers added George Hill, Rodney Hood, Jordan Clarkson, and Larry Nance Jr. in exchange for Isaiah Thomas, Jae Crowder, Channing Frye, Dwyane Wade, Iman Shumpert, Derrick Rose, and their own 2018 first-round pick.
The Cavs made all the moves they deemed necessary to stay competitive in the playoffs while they still have LeBron James on the roster. Of course, they also have motives to keep James happy enough to stay in Cleveland after his contract expires this summer.
Let’s review what the heck happened in one of the wildest trade deadlines for a single team ever.
The Cavs traded Isaiah Thomas to the Lakers
THE TRADE: Isaiah Thomas, Channing Frye, and their own 2018 first-round pick for Jordan Clarkson and Larry Nance Jr.
Cleveland’s first move of the afternoon sent one of their biggest names, Thomas, to the Lakers in a blockbuster move for Clarkson and Nance Jr. Cleveland also parted with its 2018 first-round pick (with protections that are not yet clear) and Frye, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
The move gave the Cavs a more reliable backcourt scoring option in Clarkson. Thomas has been struggling mightily since his January return from a hip injury, which kept him out for half the season, and Cleveland was running out of time for him to recover. With Kevin Love sidelined for at least another month with a broken hand, Nance gives the Cavs another frontcourt option during his recovery.
This was Cleveland’s way of showing that it’s all-in on making a championship run this season.
The Cavs trade for Rodney Hood and George Hill
THE TRADE: George Hill and Rodney Hood to the Cavaliers; Derrick Rose and Jae Crowder to the Jazz; Joe Johnson, Iman Shumpert, and 2020 second-round pick to Sacramento.
No more than a half hour later, a three-team trade was reported by Wojnarowski in which Cleveland finally landed Hill and Hood. The Cavs sent Rose and Crowder to the Jazz, Utah sent Hood to Cleveland and Johnson to the Kings, and the Cavs also sent Shumpert and a 2020 second-round pick to the Kings.
This trade gave the Cavs a true starting point guard in Hill, who they’d been seeking for weeks, and another wing scorer in Hood, who is shooting 39 percent from deep on the season. Cleveland also gave up Rose, who was a net negative on the court, and Crowder, who was struggling to replicate his Celtics form.
The Cavs traded Dwyane Wade as a favor
THE TRADE: Dwyane Wade back to Miami for a protected second-round pick
Wade is 36 years old and nearing the end of his legendary career. He didn’t want to waste his last games riding the bench behind the Cavs new acquisitions. Clarkson, Hill, and Hood are sure to take up all of the remaining guard minutes. So Cleveland appeared to do him a solid, trading him back to the Heat, where he always said he wanted to retire.
The Cavs received a heavily protected second-round pick, which will likely turn into nothing. This was solely a make-nice for Wade.
- Isaiah Thomas is on Lakers
- Channing Frye is on Lakers
- Jordan Clarkson is on the Cavaliers
- Larry Nance Jr. is on the Cavaliers
- Jae Crowder is on the Jazz
- Derrick Rose is on the Jazz
- Iman Shumpert is on the Kings
- Joe Johnson is on the Kings
- George Hill is on the Cavaliers
- Rodney Hood is on the Cavaliers
- Dwyane Wade is on the Heat
And here is the Cavaliers’ roster:
GUARDS: George Hill, Jordan Clarkson, Jose Calderon
WINGS: LeBron James, Rodney Hood, J.R. Smith, Kyle Korver, Cedi Osman, Jeff Green
BIGS: Kevin Love, Tristan Thompson, Larry Nance Jr., Ante Zizic, and probably Kendrick Perkins
A chaotic hour changed the entire landscape of what Cleveland has to offer. Now James has three months to put it all together.