In his first of eight trades that should happen before the March 15 NBA trade deadline, ESPN’s John Hollinger states that the Cleveland Cavaliers should send guards Ramon Sessions and Daniel Gibson to Portland.
It’s who they get back that may surprise Clevelanders. Per Hollinger’s latest PER Diem:
Ramon Sessions and Daniel Gibson to Portland; Jamal Crawford and Greg Oden to Minnesota; Luke Ridnour, Anthony Tolliver and $3 million to Cleveland
There’s been a lot of talk about trading Crawford for Ridnour, and that makes a lot of sense, but I like this one a little better. Sessions is a better player with a shorter contract, and his ability to play the pick-and-roll would help a Blazers offense that’s had some troubles under Raymond Felton’s leadership.
Crawford would be perfect in Minnesota, where he can play mostly off the ball but take turns running the point with the second unit. He can opt out after the season, and probably will, but he’d help the Wolves’ playoff run and they’d have a shot at re-signing him if it goes well.
Ridnour makes some sense in Cleveland, where he makes less money per year than Sessions and could slide in nicely as a steady backup to Kyrie Irving. The Cavs would also get paid, and they would accomplish that by dumping Gibson (owed $2.5 million guaranteed next year) on the Blazers, taking back the expiring deal of Tolliver and getting $3 million from the Wolves to pay the final year of Ridnour’s deal.
On the cover, it’s tough to say what the Cavaliers would be getting out of this deal. Sure, Ridnour “makes sense,” but trading two quality guards — one who is an immense fan favorite — for parts, an expiring deal and additional money doesn’t appear to be the best available offer. The Cavaliers continue to be in the hunt for draft selections. Anything of this ilk screams doing a deal just for deal’s sake.