Cavs acquire Shumpert and Smith, lose Waiters

January 7, 2015

A 3-team trade between the Cleveland Cavaliers, New York Knicks, and Oklahoma City Thunder provided the big news in the NBA on Tuesday.

The Cavaliers acquired guards Iman Shumpert and J.R. Smith from the Knicks and a protected 2015 first round pick from the Oklahoma City Thunder. In exchange, the Cavs will send guard Dion Waiters to the Thunder, and Lou Amundson, Alex Kirk and its own 2019 second round pick to the Knicks. New York will also receive forward Lance Thomas from Oklahoma City.

It had become clear to many that the Cavaliers front office, disappointed with the performance of their star-studded team under first year head coach David Blatt, was going to have to make a move of some sort in the near future to change the direction of the season.

A team led by LeBron James, Kevin Love, and Kyrie Irving simply has no business being this mediocre, even if they are all still getting used each other. This team is expected to win and win immediately no matter what.

Thus Tuesday's trade made sense for Cleveland. Even though it it did cost them a very talented young player like Waiters, the Cavs clearly needed a change.

Currently in his fourth NBA season, Shumpert is averaging 9.3 points, 3.4 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 1.3 steals in 26.0 minutes per game.  He is an excellent perimeter defender with good size.

Smith, an 11-year veteran who was named the NBA’s Sixth Man of the Year following the 2012-13 season, is averaging 10.9 points, 2.4 rebounds and 3.4 assists in 25.8 minutes through 24 games with New York.  He is a streaky gunner who can provide points off the bench.

The pick from Oklahoma City is protected 1-18 in 2015 and 1-15 in 2016 and 2017, respectively. Should the pick not convey during this period, the Thunder would send the Cavaliers its second round draft picks in 2018 and 2019.

Waiters was the fourth overall pick of the 2012 NBA Draft.  In 164 games in three seasons with the Cavs, Waiters averaged 14.3 points. This season the 6-4 guard is averaging 10.5 points, 2.2 assists, and 1.3 steals in 23.8 minutes per game.

By Staff of the

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