With the injury to sharpshooter and fan favorite J.R. Smith, the Cleveland Cavaliers needed to fill that void in terms of shooting, spacing the floor and buying into the team until his return. They needed someone on the wing who could also light it up from beyond the arc, open up lanes for Lebron and Kyrie and not need the ball every time down the floor to be effective.
They got their guy.
Through a trade with the Atlanta Hawks, the Cavs acquired Kyle Korver, one of the premier shooters in the NBA and a great glue guy who can not only fill that void while Smith is out for the next few months, but can also still play a big role even when he does return.
By giving up a 2019 first round protected pick to the Hawks, the Cavs were able to attain Korver as the Hawks are clearly looking to go younger. Perfect for the Cavs, who have their sights set on a Finals repeat, and with Korver on the wing and the threat of the three ball only becoming more apparent, they have set themselves up to achieve that goal.
As I mentioned before, Korver is a glue guy, someone who can fit into any team and make them successful in a variety of ways. Some glue guys provide the moral support, leadership and locker room presence that every team needs to win. Some glue guys possess certain talents in their game that may be just what a certain teams needs to get to the next level. Korver fulfills both of those characteristics, which makes him perfect for a team who loves to shoot the three and predicate their success on their chemistry and family atmosphere.
Korver has always been a well-respected player in the league who teams have had to game plan for because of his elite ability to shoot the basketball. This respect on and off the court is what has made him a valuable asset to every team he has been on, where he was immediately inserted into the starting lineup or the first guy off the bench.
On a team that is already at the top tier of the league in three-pointers made and attempted, Korver is the perfect pickup for the Cavs who will welcome him with more than open arms.
LeBron James was especially excited about his arrival and potential impact when asked about him the other day.
“Nah, the first thing I told him when he walked into the locker room the other day is: If you want to fit in, shoot the ball every time you get it. Shoot the ball as soon as it touches your hands. Shoot it. We don’t care.”
“We got about four guys that have the ultra-green light: J.R., Kev, now Kyle, Channing and Champ (James Jones).”
This co-sign from James should give Korver plenty of confidence, even if he didn’t need any in the first place. James realizes that Korver’s shooting touch will allow the Cavs to pick up right where they left off when J.R. went down and stay the course throughout the regular season and now have another weapon in the playoffs.
Although it’s no Kevin Durant off-season signing, for the Cavs, it’s the next best thing when you’re able to replace a valuable player with another of equal value.
Does Kyle Korver give the Cavs a better chance to repeat? Let’s talk about it here or find me on Twitter @Phenombc3.