The Cleveland Cavaliers continued their rebuilding process on Sunday as they traded guard Rodney Hood to the Portland Trail Blazers.
Cleveland will receive guards Nik Stauskas and Wade Baldwin, whose contracts expire at the end of the season. They’ll also receive two second round picks from Portland in 2021 and 2023.
Hood will now get a chance to compete for a playoff team in Portland who sits fourth in the Western Conference currently after spending nearly the last calendar year with the Cavaliers, who acquired him from Utah at the trade deadline last year.
In 45 games this season, the fifth-year guard was averaging 12.2 points on 42.7% shooting (36.2% from three-point distance) along with 2.5 rebounds and 2 assists per game.
He was only signed through the end of this season and had to approve the trade because of signing the qualifying offer last offseason. By approving the trade, he forfeited his Bird Rights which means Portland can only re-sign him by offering him the mid-level or bi-annual exception.
As for Cleveland, they collected more draft picks to help with their rebuilding process as they try to move forward in the post-Lebron James era.
The team has already moved Kyle Korver, George Hill and Hood during the season and has collected a future first-round pick as well as six future second-round picks.
It is reminiscent to the first post-Lebron era when the team moved or acquired players that weren’t going to be part of the long-term future in order to obtain a stockpile of draft picks for future talent acquisitions.
I don’t expect this to be the only trade the team will make leading up to Thursday’s trade deadline.
According to reports, the team is still trying to move guards Alec Burks and J.R. Smith.
Burks has an expiring contract and Cleveland would likely be willing to take on a long-term contract in exchange for future draft picks, likely a first-round pick.
I’m not sure how likely it is that J.R. Smith gets moved by Thursday. Smith has been away from the team since late November and he is making $14.7 million this season. He would more likely be dealt after the season when his 2019-20 salary is only partially guaranteed.