The Cleveland Cavaliers are a team that is currently going through a rebuild. They drafted Evan Mobley with the No. 2 overall pick in the draft, and he will be a part of their young core with Isaac Okoro and Darius Garland.
One of the question marks about the Cavaliers is the future of guard Collin Sexton. There have been rumors that the Cavaliers could trade Collin Sexton, as he is on the last year of his rookie deal this season, and signing him to a new contract would give them less flexibility financially.
Keeping that in mind, a team that could potentially make good use of Collin Sexton's services is the New Orleans Pelicans. The Pelicans are clearly trying to make a playoff push this year, as evidenced by their acquisitions of center Jonas Valanciunas and guard Devonte' Graham. Here is a hypothetical trade package that would send Collin Sexton to New Orleans:
New Orleans Pelicans Receive: Collin Sexton
Cleveland Cavaliers Receive: Kira Lewis Jr., Naji Marshall, 2023 first-round pick, 2024 first-round pick via Los Angeles Lakers
The Cleveland Cavaliers Get A Guard Prospect And Draft Compensation
The Cleveland Cavaliers haven't managed to get to the playoffs with Collin Sexton thus far, and as mentioned previously, singing him to a new deal would rid them of any salary cap flexibility. The Cavaliers just signed Jarrett Allen to a new deal, and Kevin Love's contract is still on the books. It makes sense that they would want to avoid adding another big-money contract to their roster.
In terms of trade, Collin Sexton is in the last year of his deal, and any team that wants him would have to pay him at the conclusion of the 2021-22 season or let him walk. It's likely that the New Orleans Pelicans could offer a competitive package for him given those circumstances.
Our hypothetical trade offer would feature Kira Lewis Jr., Naji Marshall, and two first-round picks. The two picks would be the Pelicans' own pick in 2023, and a 2024 Lakers pick that was obtained via the Anthony Davis trade. Since the New Orleans Pelicans do have a lot of picks over the next few seasons, they would probably be willing to give up a decent amount of draft compensation.
Kira Lewis Jr. is a guard prospect that would be under his rookie contract for 3 more years (counting 2021-22), and he's a guard that would be able to get ample touches with Sexton gone. The Cavaliers have also need a wing player for their rotation and have previously been linked with Dillon Brooks and Kyle Anderson of the Memphis Grizzlies. Naji Marshall could potentially be that for them, and he is a player that is a good defender and passable shooter.
Overall, this package from the New Orleans Pelicans should be enough to pry Sexton from the Cavaliers. They'd get a prospect and draft compensation, as well as a solid rotational wing. This is a good return for a rebuilding team.
The New Orleans Pelicans Create A Big 3 With Collin Sexton
If the New Orleans Pelicans were to execute a trade for Collin Sexton, they'd be getting a great scorer as their third option behind Zion Williamson and Brandon Ingram. Last season, Collin Sexton averaged 24.3 PPG and 4.4 APG on the Cleveland Cavaliers as the No. 1 option on the team. There's no doubt that his scoring numbers would go down on the New Orleans Pelicans simply due to reduced usage, but he would still be one of the most overqualified No. 3 options in the league. Sexton on the Pelicans would also let the team play Devonte' Graham as a 6th man, a role which Graham could excel in.
One of the biggest criticisms of Collin Sexton in Cleveland was his lack of playmaking ability as a point guard. There have been reports that Cavaliers players were frustrated with Collin Sexton dominating the ball, and he definitely has a more scoring-oriented playstyle as a guard. On the New Orleans Pelicans, that will likely be less of a problem. Brandon Ingram is a fairly good playmaker, and the Pelicans have run Williamson at point guard before, so playmaking shouldn't be a problem on the roster. In New Orleans, Collin Sexton would be able to focus on giving the team efficient scoring as a No. 3 and let the two stars handle the rest.
There is no question that a roster featuring Brandon Ingram, Zion Williamson, and Collin Sexton should have enough talent to get to the playoffs. They'll definitely be in the conversation as a very good offensive team. Coach Mike D'Antoni being part of the team as a consultant would also be beneficial, as he'd certainly help head coach Willie Green get the best out of this hypothetical big 3. At this point, it's clear that the Cavaliers want to trade Collin Sexton, and if the Pelicans get an opportunity to get involved in the trade talks, they should absolutely do so.