Nov 30, 2013; Cleveland, OH, USA; \Cleveland Cavaliers point guard Kyrie Irving (2) dribbles against the Chicago Bulls in the fourth quarter at Quicken Loans Arena. Mandatory Credit: David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

Best Trade Option IF Trading Irving

Nov 30, 2013; Cleveland, OH, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers point guard Kyrie Irving (2) drives to the basket against the Chicago Bulls in the third quarter at Quicken Loans Arena. Mandatory Credit: David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

Before we start with the main text of the article it is important to note a couple things: I do not believe the Cavs will trade Kyrie Irving or am I advocating for such to happen. Instead I am postulating on a possible trade that could make sense if the Cavs are looking to trade Irving.

This weekend we looked at the possibility of the Cleveland Cavaliers building their team around Dion Waiters. That article, while short and to the point, naturally brings up what to do with franchise player Kyrie Irving. To all who have watched the Cavaliers this year Irving has been off. Whether its a physical issue, a mental issue or just a slump, Irving’s game has been different this year then in the past 2 when he looked like the future of the NBA.

Irving has vacillated between dominating the ball for the entire shot clock, dribbling around screen after screen, and passively passing the ball around the outside. Irving has forced shot after shot at the rim after finally beating his defender with the dribble and has struggled setting up his teammates and getting them involved. His spot up shooting form does not look square to the rim, instead he has taken to cocking his shoulder before the shot. This is in stark contrast to the past 2 years, as well as his form while shooting on the move.

Is this just a slump, fluke season or something more? Is there something going on behind the scenes with the Cavaliers that has led to this? Is it bad enough that the Cavs may look to move Irving and build around someone else? If they do look to move Irving they should expect the world in return. While many options may be out there, and interesting to explore, one option may be the biggest and best available for the team moving forward.

The Cleveland Cavaliers trade Kyrie Irving (and players to match salaries) to the Philadelphia 76ers for the 6ers 2014 1st Round Pick, the New Orleans Pelicans Top 5 Protected 2014 1st Round Pick and Evan Turner

What a whopper of a trade right? The Cavs trade their franchise player to acquire 3 shots at 2 or 3 top players in the loaded 2014 draft.Turner is a interesting piece if the trade is made in season, if made before/during the 2014 draft a future 1st and another player could be added to the deal instead.

For the Sixers

The Sixers give up 2 possible star players for a known commodity in Irving. The Sixers take a bet that Irving is still on course to be the future of the league and pair him with 6’6″ Michael Carter Williams and a recovering Nerlens Noel as the centerpieces of their franchise. Bringing in Irving during the season likely increases their win total dropping their pick’s lottery odds down a few notches.

For Irving

Irving moves on from Cleveland and back nearer to his hometown in New Jersey. He is surrounded by Williams who can handle the ball as well and Noel who provides the defense and alley oop partner many expected Irving to be partnered with in Cleveland before the 2013 draft. Irving gets a kick to his ego by the trade which should help him overcome any issues he may be having in Cleveland.

For Turner

Turner returns to the state he starred in during college, at The Ohio State University. Turner becomes the first NBA starter type small forward on the Cavaliers since Lebron James left. He is paired with Dion Waiters, Tristan Thompson and Andrew Bynum in efforts to show off for his next contract. Turner, burdened by being the #2 overall pick and supposedly a “franchise guy,” can relax as a part of a team possibly.

For the Cavs

The Cavs make a huge move, bigger then the Browns moving Trent Richardson, with the hopes that they can build a young dynamic team. This move will add to their lottery odds and should give them 3 picks in the lottery, barring the Pelicans getting a top 5 pick or making the playoffs. The move most likely takes them out of the James race as well. Instead the Cavs use the 3 picks in the lottery either to move up or to define the future of their team. Building around Waiters, possibly Turner, Thompson and maybe Bynum along with 3 studs from the 2014 draft class means the team tries to rebuild quickly. Can Waiters be the main ball handler/player on a team? Is Turner and/or Bynum worth long term investments? Can the Cavs get lucky in the lottery and bring in 2 or 3 franchise level players?

Wrapping Up

As stated in the beginning, this is highly unlikely to happen, yet what if it did? Fans would hate it to start with but would they come around? Could the Cavs make a franchise changing move, for the good or bad? Could they set themselves up for years of failure while Irving succeeds in Philly? Could they be the next dynasty with the 2014 draft and their current players on board? What do you think?

Tags: Cleveland Cavaliers Kyrie Irving

  • WitMi

    Please stop talking about basketball, you don’t have any idea what
    you’re talking about. Go back to commentary on football. Kyrie Irving is
    a top 10 player in the league, he’s untouchable. An “off” Kyrie Irving
    still averages 20/6/3 on a bad team.

    Please don’t poison people’s minds with stuff like this, it’s irresponsible and you’re hurting the fan base. This would literally be the worst trade in franchise history.

    • Jared Mueller


      Thank you for your feedback. Do you feel confident that the current output from Irving is good enough to be the center of a championship level team?

      He showed last year he could be but this regression is concerning. Also remember I didn’t say they should trade him at all. But if they decide to what could be the best package they could receive in return? This is one unique possibility given the 2014 draft and Philly holding 2 probable high picks.

      • WitMi

        I shouldn’t have been so mean about it, that’s my bad.

        We could probably get Carmelo Anthony for Kyrie if we could make the salaries work. Now, I don’t WANT Carmelo but he has that degree of trade value. If we wanted to move him to Philly it would likely cost them MCW, Nerlens Noel, and their top pick unprotected this season, probably the NO pick as well.

        21 year old superstars are the highest valued commodity in the NBA. His trade value is probably only behind LBJ, Durant, and Anthony Davis

        • WitMi

          Also, yes you could win a championship with Irving if you can surround him with another top 15 player and a solid rim protecting big man. It’s really hard to win an NBA title but Irving is widely considered the real deal. PGs can’t win championships single handily like LeBron or Shaq could, but they can be the best player on a championship team if the second best guy is close to him.

          • Jared Mueller

            I agree if Irving gets back to last year’s version. I think Bynum can be the rim protector and a solid 3 man, even if its Evan Turner in FA next year could change everything

        • Jared Mueller

          No stress.

          I agree I don’t want Melo and 21 stars are hard to find.

          I think we would require something like you are saying from Philly, but if they are compelled to move him there must be something going on that we don’t know about.

          Besides the cocking motion in his jump shot, his demeanor is troubling from the start of the game. (I am a professional counselor so I tend to look at those things closely).

          Do you see a easy on court fix for what ails this team?

          • WitMi

            The Cavs have a multitude of problems chief among them is spacing on offense.

            Both Bynum and Tristan clog the lane on offense as neither provides reliable spacing on offense. This means the opposing bigs can leave them open when they float out to the 15 foot range. This make sit far harder for guards to score in the paint as there are now 2 rotating bigs instead of just 1.

            Last year Byron Scott spread the floor more evenly so there was more room for Irving to work.

            He’ll figure his 3PT shot out, he always has. Kyrie has been a great shooter for his entire life, his shots will eventually start to fall.

            The team’s roster composition currently doesn’t fit and is filled with young players. We will be massively in consistent all year this year. It’s going to probably take all season for our players to find and adjust to their new roles in MIke Brown’s system.