The Cleveland Cavaliers have acquired sharpshooter Kyle Korver in a trade that sent Mike Dunleavy, Mo Williams and a 2019 protected first round draft pick to the Atlanta Hawks.
The trade was as good as done on Saturday, but could not be finalized pending Mike Dunleavy’s physical. Korver was not permitted to suit up or even watch the Cavs from the bench during Cleveland’s win over Phoenix on Sunday night. Dunleavy has since announced he would report to the Hawks and undergo a physical test within the week.
It is only a matter of time before Korver actually plays for Cleveland. Hence, the internet was abuzz with discussions and videos, with titles like: “Better Luck Next Year, Warriors! Korver Traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers,” “Are the Cavs favorites over Warriors after Kyle Korver Trade?” and “Charles Barkley on Kyle Korver going from Hell (ATL) to Heaven (Cavs).”
Korver and the Atlanta Hawks: Why Now?
The 35-year old Korver had been with Atlanta since 2013. He was one of four players from the team named to the 2015 All-Star Game, where Korver hit seven triples. When the reports first came out that he would be traded, Korver said, “Obviously, it’s a great opportunity for me to go to Cleveland…but there’s a lot of relationships that I care about here that I’m going to miss.”
Atlanta had started the season with a winning record of 9-2, but has since suffered several losses. Fans wonder at Hawks president and coach Mike Budenholzer’s logic in letting go of Atlanta’s best shooter, trading him to a powerhouse like the Cavaliers.
Budenholzer has stated he likes Mike Dunleavy, and then there is also the 2019 protected first round draft pick. Korver will earn $5.2 million this year, the final year of his contract, so the Hawks are likely thinking of the future by trading him.
What Korver Could Do For the Cavs
Having Korver in a team that has Lebron James, Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love is like adding the final piece in a four-man wrecking crew. As James commented to ESPN, “Great professional…and he has another rocket launcher.”
Averaging 9.5 points per game and shooting 40.9 percent from beyond the arc, Korver can certainly fill the void left by J.R. Smith, whom the Cavs lost due to a broken thumb. Most people have the misconception that the Cleveland Cavaliers shooting guard is just a catch-and-shoot specialist, but analysts and coaches have pointed out that not only does he move well without the ball, he is also an unselfish player who can toss the ball to a teammate closer to the basket.
With the Golden State Warriors also having a four-man wrecking crew in the persons of Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green, NBA fans can expect a veritable shoot-out if or when the Warriors and Cavs meet again in the NBA Finals.
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