NBA Trade Rumor: Zydrunas Ilgauskas For David West

By: 01.19.10

David West (photo. NBA)

It’s no secret that the Cavs are looking to add one more piece for their title run this Spring. And while names such as Antawn Jamison and Troy Murphy have popped up and fizzled out, it appears the latest rumor out of Cleveland has the Cavs making a run at David West. With the Hornets doing everything they can to avoid paying the luxury tax, acquiring Big Z‘s $11.5 million expiring contract – and ridding themselves of West’s $9.1 million this season, $8.3 million next year and $7.5 million player option in 2011-12 – you have to think this deal makes sense for both teams.

One interesting aspect of this proposed trade that The Morning Journal talks about, is that the Hornets very well could buy out Ilgauskas’ contract and waive him, thus allowing him to return to the Cavs in 30 days. It’s clear that Ilgauskas doesn’t fit into New Orleans’ future plans, and the Cavs would love to have him back as insurance for Anderson Varejao and Shaquille O’Neal.

But even though New Orleans is making a playoff push and are right in thick of it, Hornets coach/GM Jeff Bower – at least publicly – doesn’t appear ready to trade West.

“The foundation of our plan has always been to maintain our core group of players and to look at ways that wouldn’t affect our overall basketball team on the court,” says Bower.

While that sounds great, we all know that at the end of the day, Hornets owner George Shinn is going to do whatever it takes to avoid paying the luxury tax. But to trade West seems like a move of desperation – and one that will only force Chris Paul closer and closer to demanding a trade.

If I’m the Hornets, I try and counter this deal by offering up Emeka Okafor. It’s no surprise that he hasn’t been the savior that they thought he would be, and in a smaller role with the Cavs, he could push them over the top in the East.

What do you think? Would you make this deal?

Source: The Morning Journal

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