The Cavaliers, who are looking to bolster their small forward position at the trade deadline, are one of multiple clubs registering “very strong interest” in Trail Blazers swingman Josh Hart, according to Marc Stein’s latest Substack story (subscriber link).
Hart, 27, is currently in the second season of a very reasonable three-year, $37.9MM deal. He has a player option for the 2023/24 season, meaning he can choose to enter unrestricted free agency this summer.
Across 49 games this year, all starts, the Villanova alum is averaging 9.4 PPG on .506/.311/.732 shooting splits. He’s also chipping in a career-high 8.1 RPG, along with 4.0 APG and 1.1 SPG.
Hart has the outlines of a solid 3-and-D contributor, but in his first full season for Portland, he is falling short on one element of that equation. Hart’s three-point shooting has regressed this season, in both volume and success rate. His 31.1% completion percentage represents a career low, and his 2.1 attempts per contest are likewise his lowest nightly average for a given season.
Cleveland could certainly use help along the wing. The team is currently starting raw swingman Isaac Okoro, a solid defender averaging a modest 6.0 PPG on .485/.333/.720 shooting splits on low volume.