The NBA’s trade deadline led to a bombshell move occurring, as the Cleveland Cavaliers sent Isaiah Thomas, Channing Frye, and their protected first round pick in the 2018 draft to the Los Angeles Lakers for Jordan Clarkson and Larry Nance Jr. It wasn’t exactly a shocking move — Thomas’ tenure in Cleveland wasn’t going well, while rumors indicated Nance could be on the move to offset a more unsavory salary like Clarkson’s — but it still was a massive deal for both squads.
Beyond how it could potentially alter the course of this season, the impact for both sides stems from the impending free agency of LeBron James, who is eligible to hit the market this summer. It is no surprise that both teams are interested in getting his signature, while rumors have persisted of the interest the best player in the world has in bringing his basketball ability and off-court interests to the City of Angels.
After the deal was reported, there were indications that both sides were ecstatic about how this could help them earn James’ signature. Let’s start in Cleveland, where Sam Amick of USA TODAY Sports reports James’ camp is excited for how this deal makes the Cavs younger while simultaneously showing a commitment to the future.