The Cleveland Cavaliers, New York Knicks and Oklahoma City Thunder completed a six-player trade Monday night (Jan. 5), involving Dion Waiters, J.R. Smith and Iman Shumpert, among others.
As part of the deal, Waiters will go to the Thunder, Smith and Shumpert go to the Cavs and three players with nonguaranteed contracts — Alex Kirk and Lou Amundson from the Cavs and Lance Thomas from the Thunder — join the Knicks. Also in the deal, the Thunder are sending a protected future first-round draft pick to the Cavs, who are sending their 2019 second-round pick to the Knicks.
The Cavs will get OKC’s 2015 first-round pick if it falls outside the top 18 this year or if it falls outside the top 15 in 2016 or ’17. If they don’t get in with those years, it will become two second-round picks, reports ESPN.com.
The Cavs made the deal in an attempt to bolster their bench, gaining a much needed offensive boost off the bench with Smith and a wing defender in Shumpert, who is currently out with a dislocated shoulder he suffered last month.
In turn, the Thunder gain the offensively talented Waiters, who had struggled to fit in with the Cavs throughout his campaign.
“I’m excited about bringing Dion aboard,” reigning league MVP Kevin Durant told reporters Monday night. “A guy that has a lot of toughness. Being from the East Coast, I know a lot about Philadelphia, South Philly, where he comes from. Those guys are tough, and they play with an edge. And that’s what we need here.
“Just knowing him from playing against him. We’re gonna make him feel wanted. I don’t think he felt that the last couple years. He’s gonna fit in well. He’s gonna get comfortable real quick. It’s on the leaders — Russell [Westbrook], myself, Nick [Collison] — to make him feel at home and feel special and let him play his game.”