On Wednesday, when I saw the headlines for the Kyrie Irving/Isaiah Thomas trade, you can say that I was quite surprised. Especially, because it did not seem like that good of a deal for the Cavaliers. But then I read that the Cavs would also receive Jae Crowder, Ante Žižić AND the unprotected first round pick from the Brooklyn Nets. Now, I am sure this could turn out to be a good deal for both teams.
The Cavaliers, with Isaiah Thomas, will get an All-Star scoring guard with only one year left on his contract. Thomas also had one of the best seasons in his career, and he was the number three scorer last season. Jae Crowder can also be seen as a great asset for the team. He is one of the best wing defenders a team can get, and he is a guy that is quite a hustles, he sets great picks and is the hard-nosed guy everyone would want on their team. They got a great deal with receiving the 20-year-old center Ante Žižić. Cleveland now has a great young center to fill that spot, instead of some older players they have had in recent years. Last, but not least, the Nets’ picks could be really valuable. Therefore, Cleveland has a good chance to land a number one pick in the 2018 draft. Furthermore, as mentioned above, Thomas only has one year left on his contract. If Lebron James chooses to leave the Cavaliers after next seasons as well, the Cavs could start over with a clean payroll and max cap space.
This year, they are my favorite to win the Eastern Conference. Their team is even better now than last year, even though Kyrie will be missed.
Kyrie Irving is a great point guard for the Boston Celtics. He can be seen as one of the best ball handlers in the NBA. Together with Gordon Hayward, another recent addition to the Celtics’ roster, and Al Horford, the Celtics have assembled quite a good and promising team for the upcoming season. Furthermore, these three players are all under contract for at least two more years. In addition to this, they still have several draft picks for the upcoming years. The Celtics could use these picks to trade for more (future) All-Star players or draft more young talent in the 2018 draft. Last, the Celtics have taken a step back on the defensive end by trading Jae Crowder and Avery Bradley this summer, but both Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown have shown during the Summer League that they could to take their place on this end.
The best thing is that we do not have to wait long to see what this trade will mean for both teams. On the opening night of the season, both teams go head to head in Cleveland at the Quicken Loans Arena. A heated rivalry between these teams, the fans and the players, could make it feel like Game 7 of the Finals, instead of the first game of the season. Can’t wait!