Cavaliers, Pistons Among Definite Deadline Sellers

Because there’s now a potential path to the postseason for the top 10 teams in each NBA conference (via the new play-in tournament), it’s taking longer this season for clear sellers to emerge on the trade market, writes Shams Charania of The Athletic.

“Most teams are still in the playoff chase, which makes everyone bunched together and the trade market less active,” a high-ranking team official told The Athletic.

However, as Charania reports, at least two teams at the bottom of the Eastern Conference standings look like definite sellers, according to rival teams. The 13th-seeded Cavaliers and the 15th-seeded Pistons appear to be open for business.

Cleveland’s most obvious trade candidate is Andre Drummond, who has been pulled from the rotation as the team looks to find a taker for him. According to Charania, there have been some exploratory calls on Drummond, with the Bulls among the teams to express some interest, but there’s still skepticism that the Cavs will find an appealing deal for the big man, who has an unwieldy $28.75MM cap hit.

Drummond isn’t the only Cavalier on the trade block. The club has also been open to discussing JaVale McGee, Cedi Osman, and Taurean Prince, according to Charania, who hears that multiple teams have inquired on the Cavs’ wing players. Collin Sexton, Darius Garland, Jarrett Allen, and Isaac Okoro are viewed as the club’s core pieces and are presumably off-limits.

Like the Cavs, the Pistons have an expensive big man who is sitting out as the team attempts to move him. However, Blake Griffin, who is making more than Drummond ($36.8MM) and has another guaranteed year left on his contract, will be even harder to trade. Sources tell Charania and James Edwards III of The Athletic that Detroit will likely work toward a buyout with Griffin.

Veteran shooting guard Wayne Ellington is expected to draw interest from contenders on the trade market and should be a far more valuable trade chip than Griffin, given his affordable minimum salary and his strong production in 2020/21 (10.6 PPG, .435 3PT%).

According to Edwards, combo guard Delon Wright and big man Mason Plumlee have also registered interest from rival teams, but both players are under contract beyond this season, so the Pistons won’t necessarily feel compelled to move them. As Edwards explains, while Detroit will be a deadline seller, the sense around the league is that GM Troy Weaver won’t be as aggressive this month as he was during his first offseason on the job, when he remade nearly the entire roster.

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30 thoughts on “Cavaliers, Pistons Among Definite Deadline Sellers

  1. thekayz

    If I’m Troy Weaver, I’m moving Ellington and looking to move Wright, Svi and Josh Jackson.
    Unless someone is giving me a 1st (or equivalent) for Plumlee, I’m keeping him….which probably means I’m keeping him.
    If Weaver does end up moving Svi, Sekou will be the only Piston left from 2019-2020.

    • If I’m Weaver, I would just try to get what he can get for Griffin and Ellington. Keep the rest of the players. Pistons have young athletic talented players. I would keep Wright, Svi, Jackson, Smith, Plumlee and Sekou. If the Pistons can get Griffin’s contract off the books, the team will have lots of open cap space. The Pistons could become good quickly.

    • davidkaner

      Weaver signed these guys with the exception of Grant, to be moved for assets. Because he signed them to multiple years, he can sit back & be picky. If anyone wants Plumlee, it’s for a 1st rounder. Jackson & Ellington 2nd rounders.

  2. Richie Rich

    Osman is better than people give him credit for. He’d be a good addition to a contender.

  3. formerlyz

    Cleveland could use a 2/3 to add to their core, especially now that they lost porter

  4. Ironmonger835

    Otto Porter for Drummond would be nice, for the Bulls but no one wants Otto Porter. Maybe they can convince them that Hutchison has some value and throw him in the deal. (He does not). I don’t think Bulls should give up draft picks for Drummond. They’re not contenders, borderline Playoff team

    • stevep-4

      My thoughts exactly, although I would send them Markannen if it made the deal happen, Bulls are better without him.

        • stevep-4

          No, Markannen is awful, a soft, always-hurt, always full of excuses, disappointment. He is essentially a 3point shooter and nothing else.

  5. KnickerbockerAl

    Still think Griffin has value in OKC. Don’t see point of buying him out. Save him for next yr, 100% healthy. Then you can move him as expiring contract, that has value. Ellington should be easy to move.

    • davidkaner

      There’s no reason to believe he will be healthy next year. He’s gone via buyout. He has zero value.

      • KnickerbockerAl

        No owner is paying 40 mill to get rid of player when he has one yr left. Players association won’t allow it for less and Griffin is not giving back money. You you don’t believe. And you got zero knowledge of him. OKC is their best option.

        • "Stons" Fan

          You are right. I think if he is not traded they keep him until next season and try to trade his expiring contract.

        • x%sure

          OKC/Presti would have to agree and in all this time, have not. Griffin with his sore knees would take some discount to get back in contention with fewer minutes. I like the OKC idea though.

          Wait… “detroit fans lament the Griffin era”… IDK but past tense… gone

      • Cap & Crunch

        Agree, Cha guards are a very cohesive unit right now

        If anything Id trade Graham for Bigs help if possible

        • formerlyz

          They dont need a big. Zeller is good, PJ washington gets minutes at the 5, and they have Biyombo playing well there too.

  6. KnickerbockerAl

    I’d like to see Knicks pickup Drummond. Going to be interesting to see where he goes. He can put a contender over the top.

  7. phillyballers

    Drummond and McGee for Blake Griffin and a 1st or two 2nds. Would be kinda ironic. Then Detroit and buyout both and save money. Cleveland can buy Griffin out next year.

    • Cap & Crunch

      I think Javales got pretty good stand alone value on his own – Id want nowhere near the Griffin train today

      Surprised they soured on Osman so quick, he’d fit a lot of teams today. Cle’s got a little bit of everything to sale in a sellers market, they should get full dollar and maybe more if they are shrewd

      • x%sure

        Osman can’t quite get in sync with the new Cavs, and he can’t turn the corner into a big scorer to make up for it. He deserves another chance… it’s not like he’s ruining this one but he came up working out with Lebron. He learned to shoot since… now it’s time for the more explosive Okoro to do so!

        Finally a ‘seller’ article that mentions Cavs but not KLove! Whoops I just did

  8. shortsighted

    I read where Boston is interested in Vucevic, if he’s available the Bulls should be interested. They have been dominated at the Center position in recent games. Could be Orlando wants to give Mo Bomba more time. The Bulls have a lot of young talent. If it were me I’d consider trading Markkanen and Carter and a pick if Orlando would be interested.

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