The Cavs are moving forward with Lauri Markkannen, as news of the trade has even managed to steal some keystrokes from the Browns!
A good nugget worth pointing out is the trade rumor of how the Cavs became involved with the deal.
The Blazers were originally talking to the Bulls about a trade for Markkannen, but Chicago’s quest for an additional second-round pick is what got Cleveland involved.
NBC Sports Chicago’s K.C. Johnson wrote the following of the deal:
"“According to two sources, the talks originally centered on Markkanen landing with the Trail Blazers in exchange for Jones Jr. and the lottery-protected first-round pick. When the Bulls sought an extra second-round pick, the talks expanded to include the Cavaliers.”"
It’s still not a popular trade, but I was buying. Nance is entering his age 29 season. He wasn’t going to play on championship contenders with Cleveland. He knew this. He asked to be traded to a winner.
In return, the Cavs got a player capable of filling it up from perimeter who is four years younger than Nance, in addition to the fact that he doesn’t come with the recent injury history carried by the Nance.
Adding Markkannen makes buying out Kevin Love a slam dunk, but now it doesn’t Love is all that interested, and who could blame him? If he stays for two years, he’s gets the entire $60 million.
This could be a storyline that continues to get uglier, as Love clearly wasn’t ready to play for Team USA. Are the Cavs going to make him play? Can he contribute at all? It just seems like things could get very messy.
In the end, the Cavs got in on a deal that made them better offensively. Markkannen may not be our No. 1 choice, but he fills a great need on this team as someone who is over 6-foot-1 and can score.