As the NBA trade deadline approaches, the Cleveland Cavaliers are a team expected to be active on the trade market, and one player that could very well be on the move is veteran shooting guard Alec Burks.
According to Kelly Iko of The Athletic, Burks is a highly valuable commodity around the NBA:
“'(Burks) is 95 percent tradeable,’ said one person familiar with the Cavs’ plans. [Rodney] Hood can also be moved but has veto power on any would-be trade. Per Brian Windhorst of ESPN, Cleveland is also fine with taking back any salary for this year and next, but none after that. That falls right in line with what the [Brandon] Knight and [Marquese] Chriss contracts resemble.”
Perhaps not so coincidentally, Burks showed up in another recent report from The Athletic as the top candidate to be traded by the Cavs prior to the deadline. The reasoning behind his attractiveness is due not only to his productive season thus far, but also because he is on the last year of his contract.
At the moment, Burks is averaging 10.3 points, 3.8 rebounds, and 2.1 assists per game, all above his career averages.
According to Iko, one team to keep an eye on in terms of a potential trade partner is the Houston Rockets. If the Rockets were involved, Burks could be dealt in return for talented, but oft-injured point guard Knight.
“He’s a good player but I don’t think he makes them better either,” one unnamed NBA scout said of the Rockets potentially acquiring Burks. “I think they need a forward that could defend and make shots. They have scoring guards already. Burks has been inefficient this year as well.”
Whether it’s the Rockets or some other team looking to insert some affordable talent into its roster, it seems clear that Burks could be on the move very soon. While he has shown the ability to contribute in Cleveland, the Cavs front office is fully geared towards building for the future.
Despite his efforts, it seems likely that Burks won’t be a part of that future for very long.