NBA Rumors: Cavs Have 5 Trade Chips To Bring In Reinforcements

When the Cleveland Cavaliers lost Ricky Rubio for the season to a torn ACL, many wondered if they could maintain their surprise start to the season. They've answered those questions with an 8-2 run in their last 10 games, and now sit 3rd place in the Eastern Conference. And they've got plenty of trade chips to improve before the trade deadline. 

ESPN's Brian Windhorst reports on The Hoop Collective podcast that the Cavs have the 3rd-easiest schedule from here on, they have the No. 3 defense in the league, the No. 4 'net rating', PLUS the following five trade assets:

  • $8.9M disabled player exception (for Rubio's season-ending injury) which they can use for a player with one year on his contract
  • Ricky Rubio himself (who becomes a free agent at season's end) with his $17M expiring contract
  • Three draft picks: their own 1st, and two second-rounders that will be good ones, from Houston and San Antonio
And according to Cavs reporter Chris Fedor, "sources say they are willing to deal their 2022 first-round draft pick and wouldn’t hesitate to move Rubio."

The Cavs brought in Rajon Rondo as an immediate piece after Rubio went down, but they're looking for more. 

Two targets include the Boston Celtics' Dennis Schroder (Windhorst has heard his name in connection to Cleveland), and the Houston Rockets' Eric Gordon.

Expect Cleveland to make a move to solidify their surprising standing as Eastern Conference contenders.

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