The Cleveland Cavaliers continue to eye trade deals heading into the deadline despite sitting comfortably in first place in the Eastern Conference. The team is seeking change after firing head coach David Blatt as a roster shake up or two could be coming in the next few days. While LeBron James is denying that Kevin Love is getting sent packing, that might not be true for other players on the roster.
According to ESPN's Marc Stein, the Cavaliers are trying to shop a trade package including Timofey Mozgov and Iman Shumpert. While it has been heavily reported that Mozgov is being shopped in trades, but the inclusion of Shumpert is new. Shumpert has struggled this season with poor defense and floor spacing after signing a four-year, $40 million contract. Because of that, the Cavaliers are trying to trade him, confident their bench is deep enough to withstand a move.
According to Chris Haynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer, the Cavaliers have a list of players they were looking at. Kyle Korver is a top target for Cleveland, but that trade package will get them nothing from Atlanta. The Hawks do not need Mozgov and they will not want Shumpert. The best deal for Cleveland could be for Ben McLemore of the Sacramento Kings. He is a top three-point shooter which is what Cleveland wants.
Sacramento is trying to break up their roster piece by piece. The 23-year-old is the first target they would like to move. It is unclear just how expensive McLemore would be. Interest will be high in him considering his youth. Cleveland could try to win over the Kings with that package.
Regardless of what deals the Cavaliers seek at the deadline, many believe they are still willing to shop Love at the deadline. James told the media during All-Star weekend that the reports were false. The front office of Cleveland has said the same thing. Trading Love in the middle of the season is not good regardless of what the franchise thinks about the forward. The Cavaliers will not get as good of a return for the forward as they would if they try to trade him after the season. For now, Love stays put, but if Cleveland does not win a title, he could be the first to go in a roster breakup.
"One thing about this business is you can only control what you can control," James said, via ESPN.com. "Things that you can't control, you can't let it bother you, and I've learned that over the years. There is so much that goes on in professional sports that if you just focus on what you can control, everything else will take care of itself."