We're roughly a quarter through the NBA season and it's time for the Cavaliers to consider trades to bolster the team's chances at a deep playoff run. December 15 marks the unofficial open of "NBA trade season", since that's the day that most of the players who signed new deals this offseason first become eligible to be moved.
Cleveland would participate in the Play-In Tournament should the season end today, which would a disappointing result given the high expectations entering the season. The Cavs field a top-10 defense but a bottom-10 offense, so there's a clear need for scoring to make this team a true contender. But you also don't want to see Cleveland go too far away from that defensive identity.
Let's look at three realistic trade targets Cleveland needs to consider to improve the roster.
Cavaliers Trade Rumors: 3 Targets Cleveland Must Consider
1. Dorian Finney-Smith, Brooklyn Nets
Finney-Smith is the prototypical three-and-D player, shooting over 44% from beyond the arc this year on almost six attempts per game. With three years left on his deal, Finney-Smith could represent a foundational rotation player to complement Darius Garland, Donovan Mitchell and Evan Mobley.
The Nets are currently ahead of the Cavs in the standings, but just barely. Over the course of the year, Cleveland's talent should push the club ahead, so I'd think Brooklyn would entertain offers.
His versatility on defense would fit the Cavs' structure well, and it shouldn't be overly expensive to acquire his services.
This is the kind of veteran player that can accelerate the Cavs' timeline. Max Struss and Caris LaVert are struggling this year, increasing the need for a player of Finley-Smith's caliber.
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