A look at the Cavaliers next season’s additions.
The NBA is easily the best professional sports league in the United States. Was that ever up for debate?
After this offseason, it certainly is not. That also appears to be the opinion of several NBA players after Tuesday’s trade between the Boston Celtics and Cleveland Cavaliers saw Kyrie Irving head east and Isaiah Thomas pair up with LeBron James.
It is crazy to think that the two best teams in the Eastern Conference decided to swap star point guards with each other, and that is just the latest in a series of wild events here in the summer of 2017.
What more could you ask for?
The Cavaliers traded disgruntled star guard Kyrie Irving to Boston for guard Isaiah Thomas, forward Jae Crowder, young big man Ante Zizic and the Brooklyn Nets’ 2018 first-round draft pick that the Celtics owned. The Nets are expected to again struggle this season, meaning the selection has the potential to be in the top three of the draft.
Boston got the best player in the deal, which is usually how NBA trades are judged. Cleveland, however, got a nice haul with great potential in exchange for a player who had demanded to be traded after he began feuding with LeBron.
So what is to come over the next nine or 10 months is the immediate referendum. Is this enough?
Is this enough to get the Cavs back to the NBA Finals for another crack at the Golden State Warriors? Is this enough to win it all?
Are there enough basketballs to go around for both James and Thomas, a diminutive but creative guard coming off a career season who needs to control possessions?
Mainly, is there enough potential in a group that should be better defensively and can add a highly skilled young player going forward to persuade LeBron James that Cleveland has a future worth sticking around to experience.
LeBron’s ability to pursue free agency next spring will loom over everything this season, certainly everything in Cleveland.
James turns 33 in December and has been to seven consecutive NBA Finals with the Cavs (2015-17) and Miami Heat (2011-2014). His team has won the Larry O’Brien Trophy in June of 2012, 2013 and 2016.