Stephen A. Smith Starts Another Blockbuster Clippers-Cavs Trade Rumor
As Thursday's trade deadline looms over the NBA landscape like one of those giant spaceships from "Independence Day" slowly entering the Earth's atmosphere, only a handful of superstars and prized prospects can feel safe -- and justifiably so. There are a few reasons 2016 has seen such an bumper crop of blockbuster trade scenarios bounce around the rumor mill -- disappointing free agent gatherings in Cleveland/L.A./Miami, the impending talent-rich free agency period, the proliferation of rumor-mongering blogs (ahem, SportsGrid, ahem) -- but the most obvious explanation is that general managers have finally accepted that the Golden State Warriors are very capable of sweeping any basketball team ever created in a seven-game playoff series.
Some franchises are reacting to GSW's invincibility by hiding out in a bunker until Steph and Klay move on to conquer some other inferior basketball planet (like the Atlanta Hawks seem to be considering), while others desperately look to acquire that top-secret superweapon to stop them. So, because Golden State is virtually perfect, the speculative upgrades that would give any of the other 31 teams a chance at competing with the defending champs tend to look insane.
RELATED: Tuesday's NBA Trade Rumor Roundup
We heard the Carmelo-to-the-Cavs-three-team-mega-deal talk last week, we've known that Oklahoma City could see the writing on the wall and send Kevin Durant/Russell Westbrook before they both bolt in free agency and we've heard rumblings of a potential Dwight Howard-Hassan Whiteside swap all season. Today, thanks to the ears and imagination of one Stephen A. Smith, we now know that there is a small but real chance that the Cavaliers and Clippers consider swapping two starting guards.
"even though some would say you keep blake griffin and you let go of deandre, deandre is a beast on the boards. he's a beast blocking shots. he's a defensive presence. awful free-throw shooter, but that's all, and on top of it all, he costs less. so as a result, you can't get as much for him as you'd be able to get for blake griffin, which is why blake griffin's name has to be thrown into the fray."
"because the only other thing that you can entertain, skip, that can really change the things for the clippers, is if you traded cp3, and i'm telling you they'd all have a heart attack. cp-3 loves l.a. he ain't trying to leave. but you do have folks talking about the possibility that it might be good for the cavaliers to trade kyrie irving to l.a. and get chris paul to cleveland because chris paul and lebron are tight. you know? he's the godfather to one of lebron james' children. they're very, very close, and we all know that cp3 would be the point guard that lebron would love to have."
"i'm here to tell you that right now, i don't think it would ever happen because i don't think doc rivers would ever do it, but outside of moving cp3, the only thing you can do to change the fortunes of this team potentially is trade blake griffin and since you don't want to do that, you want to light a fire under him to let him know that his future in l.a. may be on the line, you would need to produce when you get back, and i think that that has a lot to do with all of this noise we're hearing about blake griffin."
Before you erase Smith's gossip from your memory on account of the fact he's kind of pulling this trade out of his ass, realize that the idea of a one-for-one deal involving Chris Paul and Kyrie Irving actually makes a lot of sense for both teams. The Clippers get a guard closer in age to the rest of their core of superstars, while the Cavaliers would get a better distributor (something they've struggled with since last season) and a lockdown on-ball defender to slow Steph Curry in the Finals rematch they're gearing up for. Is it in any way likely to happen? Of course not -- superstar-for-superstar deals rarely happen mid-season -- but don't pretend like it hasn't crossed the minds of GMs David Wohl and David Griffin. As it stands, neither roster has the firepower to keep the Warriors from repeating this season, and both front offices know that.
Be the first to know
Want FREE Fantasy and Gaming Advice and Savings Delivered to your Inbox? Sign up for our Newsletter.