Grade the Trade: Spurs give Wembanyama perfect running mate in mock deal with Cavs

Cleveland Cavaliers v San Antonio Spurs
Cleveland Cavaliers v San Antonio Spurs / Ronald Cortes/GettyImages
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Grade the Trade: Cleveland's perspective on this deal

Many might wonder why the Cavaliers would consider moving Garland after assembling one of the most competitive rosters they've had in a long time. It's a valid question.

Yet, as Swartz noted, Cleveland's Donovan Mitchell showed this season that he could take the reigns as the point guard. The fit with Garland and Mitchell has not been seamless, and this deal would open the door to give the latter the keys on offense entirely.

This deal would help bolster Cleveland's depth with several quality pieces. Although he's not Garland, Keldon Johnson is certainly a nice player. Through four years with the Spurs, Johnson has averaged an impressive 16.3 points per matchup. He could serve as a capable complementary piece alongside Mitchell, providing a scoring boost with Garland out of the fold.

Tre Jones is also not just a throw-in. He cannot do everything Garland can, but he's developing into a nice floor general at the NBA level, averaging 11.4 points and 6.4 assists over the last two seasons. Having a player like that would make sure the Cavaliers are not left high and dry at the point guard position after moving on from Garland, which would certainly be a welcoming factor here.

While a first from the Spurs themselves would be truly desirable, a pick from the Atlanta Hawks would also be an intriguing get, as there is no telling what they might look like next season. As with all draft picks, nothing is set in stone, but that particular pick may end up being extremely valuable, giving the Cavaliers a chance to upgrade further down the line.

Still, giving away Garland, a proven All-Star talent, especially at a time when it feels like this team is close to making a true leap to contention, could make this front office hesitant, even if the return is rather solid. Perhaps how the rest of this current playoff run pans out could impact their decision, but with Garland inking that extension recently, it's likely the Cavaliers will ultimately keep him.

Cleveland Grade: B-

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