Last night, there were reports of new Cavaliers’ guard Isaiah Thomas not being able to pass a physical right now, and what would that mean for the megadeal going forward.
Our guess is the trade will not be rescinded. Kyrie Irving has napalmed any bridge between himself and the organization, and despite LeBron James’ public comments wishing Irving well and thanking him for the last three seasons, that relationship has been destroyed too.
So, we would anticipate additional compensation from Boston in the form of an additional draft pick or another player before the deal would be rescinded.
Besides, although Thomas is a very good player, making second team All NBA in 2016-17, GM Koby Altman probably made the deal to secure Brooklyn’s first round pick next year, and rugged wing defender Jae Crowder first and foremost.
Remember that Thomas is a free agent after next season, and is looking for a max contract.
Also, Altman had to move Irving, who asked for a trade shortly after the Cleveland season ended, and even the national media has praised him for getting an impressive haul for a player who wanted out.
If the deal is called off, there is no guarantee that the wine and gold could make this good of a trade with another team.
So, assuming something is worked out, where do the Cavs go from here?
We are fairly certain that this isn’t the last move Altman will make before training camp.
One, Tyronn Lue has a roster full of wings, with more players available than he has playing time to dole out.
Besides James and JR Smith, the projected starters, Lue needs to find some court time for Crowder, Jeff Green, Richard Jefferson, Iman Shumpert, Kyle Korver, and newcomer Cedi Osman.
And don’t forget the rumors that Dwyane Wade could be heading to Cleveland if his contract is bought out by the Bulls, which some have reported as a certainty.
It would figure that Iman Shumpert is the odd man out, but we could also see Jefferson be moved too, although he is a leader in the locker room.
That’s an impossible task. We would anticipate one, if not two of those players are sent elsewhere, possibly for an experience big man, that the team needs.
Right now, the bigs would be Kevin Love, Tristan Thompson, Channing Frye, and two inexperienced players: Edy Tavares and Ante Zizic, who came over in the Irving deal.
The Cavs needed another post player, particularly a rim protector, last season, and to date still have acquired one. So, there is still definitely a need.
It is doubtful that Kay Felder returns, particularly if Thomas is here, because two sub six foot point guards is one too many.
And, of course, there is the Brooklyn pick, which is huge. Altman could use it to deal for another star player before the season starts, use it at the trade deadline, or perhaps have it for next year’s draft, as it should be a top five pick.
The Cavs have a chip that a lot of teams will want, especially teams in a rebuilding mode. That’s why it may be the most important asset received in the trade.
That alone is the reason the deal will not be rescinded. It might be tweaked, but Kyrie Irving has played his last game with the Cavaliers.