Pascal Siakam has his flaws and if we’re being fair isn’t a superstar in the NBA. In fact, if I had my choice of big men, I’d rather have Ben Simmons than Siakam. That doesn’t mean that if the Simmons deal fell apart that Siakam wouldn’t be a great get. He would.
Now Siakam has some issues. Namely, he’s not a playmaker for others. He’s the guy you get the ball to, not the guy you get the ball from. So any deal would need the Cavs to retain either Ricky Rubio or Darius Garland because Siakam isn’t Simmons, he can’t run the offense. That’s ok. He’s also an iffy wing-shooter, at a career 32% shooter from three. Now in 2018-2019 and 2019-2020, he shot 37% and 36% from three. It was in ’19-’20 that saw his best from the arc, as he shot a career-high of six three-point attempts per game.
That’s more than Garland and Collin Sexton attempted in 2020-2021 for context.
So Siakam has his flaws, and the Cavs would likely start him at the three-spot (small forward), which is fine. He might be out of position a bit, but in lineups that include Lauri Markkanen and Sexton, he’ll be fine.
What makes Siakam such an ideal fit is that he’s a defensive-minded player, who can crash the boards and pass out from the low-post. Being able to get the ball back out to a wing player when getting doubled isn’t always an easy thing for a big to do, and to see Siakam have this ability is encouraging.
Plus, if the Cavs go with an all defensive lineup of Rubio, Isaac Okoro, Siakam, Evan Mobley, and Jarrett Allen, it’s very likely that teams will have a hard time getting a few points in, let alone any long-sustained runs.