Now, the trade can’t be completed as is until the one-month deadline has passed on Jaime Jaquez, but here’s how it breaks down.
"The Cleveland Cavaliers get Tyler Herro and Jusuf Nurkic. The Miami Heat get Damian Lillard and Sam Merrill. The Portland Trailblazers get Jarrett Allen, Duncan Robinson, Isaac Okoro, Caleb Martin, Dean Wade, Nikola Jovic, and if the money works Jaime Jaquez. They’ll also receive two first-round picks from the Miami Heat (’28/’30), and four second-round picks from the Cavs (Milwaukee’s ’25 Cleveland’s ’26 and ’27, Denver’s ’28)."
Why this trade works for everyone:
The Cleveland Cavaliers need better scoring. The idea of getting Tyler Herro, at least to me, is a pipe dream. His arrival would be a boom for the team and would allow the Cavs to either keep Donovan Mitchell long-term or trade him after the season if he truly wants to leave. While Nurkic is not the rim protector or the paint defender that Allen is, he’s an upgrade offensively.
For the Heat, they get their man in Lillard, at the cost of their entire team. If they can do the trade without Jaquez being included, I think that would be the best scenario for the Heat, but after the trade, they’ll have a 33-year-old Lillard, Jimmy Butler, Bam Adebayo, Kyle Lowry, Kevin Love, and Josh Richardson. That’s about it. That’s an old team, so here’s hoping they can find some cheaper, young players on good deals.
For the Trailblazers, this seems like the only play. They don’t want Herro and are hoping for a big man in return. They want Adebayo, but that’s not going to happen, so they get Allen instead. He’s not as athletic as Adebayo but he’s as good of a rim protector. Wade, Okoro, Jovic, and Martin become pieces of the future, while Robinson and Jerami Grant become trade options at the deadline, bringing in even more draft capital. They also get six draft picks, which isn’t a lot compared to the inflated deals involving Mitchell and Rudy Gobert, but it’s a better return than the Washington Wizards got for Bradley Beal.
Plus, Lillard goes to where he really wants to go.