Corey Brewer can’t single-handedly change the fortunes of an NBA franchise, but he can be a difference-maker in the title race for a team that already has its stars in place. Brewer’s six-steal performance Wednesday for the Timberwolves in a win against the Knicks is testament to the sort of effect he can have defensively. It’s no doubt with that sort of ability in mind that a pair of elite teams are reportedly in talks with the Wolves to acquire the eighth-year swingman.
Cleveland, one of those teams, is supposed to be atop the league after welcoming LeBron James back and trading for Kevin Love this past summer. Instead, the Cavs are just 5-5, allowing the fifth most points per possession in the league, according to NBA.com. Joe Harris, the 33rd overall pick from this year’s draft, is seeing significant minutes at shooting guard, a development that bodes well for the long-term future but doesn’t speak highly of the team’s perimeter depth for this season.
The Rockets, the other club linked to Brewer, are 9-3 after a 9-1 start. The Rockets have begun the season better than might have been expected after a disappointing offseason, but GM Daryl Morey is apparently anxious to use the trade exception he acquired for Jeremy Lin to fortify a rotation that lost much of its depth over the summer. Houston has the best defense in the league in terms of points allowed per possession, NBA.com shows, but if the Rockets can use their exception to acquire Brewer without giving anyone up in return, they stand a better chance of remaining a defensive force all season and into the playoffs.
The Cavs are probably more talented on the whole than the Rockets are, but that doesn’t mean everything when it comes to the acquisition of a specific player. Let us know whether you think Cleveland or Houston is the better destination for the former University of Florida standout, or if you believe he’d better serve another team. Feel free to elaborate on your choice in the comments.