A couple of rumors have made the rounds related to the Cleveland Cavaliers and Andrew Bynum. With Bynum put on leave from the team, paid to stay away from the rest of the roster, and having a 6 million dollar option in early January the Cavs have aggressively looked to move the big fella. Yesterday’s juicy, and most likely untrue, aside, Bynum’s time with the Cavs is clearly over, so lets look and compare these two possible trades.
Cavaliers Receive: Luol Deng, Erik Murphy and a 2nd Round Pick
Bulls Receive: Andrew Bynum and Dion Waiters
For the Cavs: The trade gives the Cavs a strong small forward who has playoff experience, 3 point range and who fills the biggest need on the Cavs roster. The Cavs give up the Bynum contract but more importantly 6 man and 2nd year shooting guard with potential in Waiters.
For the Bulls: The Bulls give up Deng, limiting their hopes of signing him in the off-season. They move Jimmy Butler to the 3 to fill in for Deng. The Bulls gain extreme amounts of cap relief by simply cutting Bynum before the remaining $6 million is due. For the Bulls, Waiters is the key to the deal. Waiters gives the Bulls an aggressive SG to pair with Derrick Rose next year and to carry some of the scoring load this
Why The Cavs Should Make the Deal
For the Cavs this deal allows them to move on from Bynum while adding to the weakest area on the team. Deng’s strength, shooting and experience is desperately missing from the Cavs current team. If there is a rift between Waiters and franchise player Kyrie Irving, this trade relieves that stress as well. Having Deng on the team gives the Cavs a better chance to resign him if other free agent options fall through this summer.
Why The Cavs Shouldn’t Make the Deal
The Cavaliers would be giving up years of a cost efficient, high ceiling player in Waiters in exchange for free agent to be Deng. While this type of trade makes sense for a team fighting for a NBA Finals appearance, it makes less sense for one sitting at 10 – 20 and just trying to make the playoffs. This trade also would coddle Irving, if indeed a rift does exist, giving more power to the star of the team. This was less then successful when done in the past with Lebron James.
If FoS Had the Final Say: Pass. Bynum and a future First (Kings, Grizzlies or Heat) for Deng would be acceptable but giving up Waiters for a 1 year rental, with no guarantee of even a playoff birth is short sighted.
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