The Chicago Bulls and Cleveland Cavaliers completed a monster trade early Tuesday morning. The Bull sent forward Luol Deng to the Cavaliers for center Andrew Bynum, three future draft picks and the right to swap draft picks in 2015. Those picks are crucial to the trade because a straight up deal was never going to happen.
On paper, you might think that the Cavaliers won the trade. They get to send a useless Bynum to the Bulls where he can try to be disciplined by head coach Tom Thibodeau for Deng, who the Bulls were shopping anyway because the organization did not want to re-sign him. However, Chicago getting a ton of draft picks will be very crucial, and the swap in 2015 is another big deal. Chicago stole this one for now, but Cleveland can make the most out of it if the organization can re-sign Deng.
As Cleveland will push for a playoff spot in the wide-open Eastern Conference, Deng’s future with the organization is obviously in limbo. Will Deng want to be a part of a potentially bright future with point guard Kyrie Irving in Cleveland? The free-agent waters could be testy if Deng is looking for big-time money.
Deng is averaging 19.0 points per game this season and 6.9 rebounds. Cleveland could have a better future if the organization can lock him up for the long-term. If not, then Cleveland lost a ton for a player who is not planning on returning to the team.