Despite multiple reports earlier this week suggesting that momentum was building toward a trade that would send George Hill to Cleveland, the Cavaliers and Kings are further apart than initially believed, writes Joe Vardon of Cleveland.com. According to Vardon, there are still “significant hurdles” to clear before a deal can be completed.
Reports on Tuesday indicated that the Cavs and Kings were making progress on a trade that would include Iman Shumpert and Channing Frye, and perhaps Derrick Rose and/or a second-round pick. However, one source tells Vardon that the two teams were speaking “conceptually” and weren’t on the verge of pulling the trigger. Another of Vardon’s sources said that the Cavs wanted to change the parameters of a potential deal.
As I noted on Tuesday, a deal involving Hill, Shumpert, Frye, and Rose would make sense for both clubs. Shumpert, Frye, and Rose have a combined cap hit of $19.23MM this season, which nearly matches Hill’s $20MM cap charge. Both Frye and Rose are on expiring contracts, which would appeal to the rebuilding Kings, who would subsequently be on the hook for Shumpert’s $11MM player option for 2018/19 instead of Hill’s fully guaranteed $19MM salary. The Cavs, meanwhile, would add a veteran guard who has had a down year but would be a good fit in their rotation if he can recapture his previous form.
The Cavs still have two weeks until the February 8 trade deadline, so there’s plenty of time to work out the specifics on a trade for Hill. If the two teams can’t reach an agreement and the Kings don’t find another taker for the veteran guard, a buyout isn’t out of the question, according to Vardon, who writes that Sacramento is ready to move on from Hill.
As they weigh the merits of a deal, the Cavs are also making changes to their lineup in the hopes of busting out of their current slump. Head coach Tyronn Lue said today that Tristan Thompson will replace Jae Crowder in the club’s starting lineup, per Dave McMenamin of ESPN (Twitter link).