In a season that has them penciled in to be a repeat Finals contender, the Cavaliers are trying to get their name up there in permanent ink.
According to Yahoo — typically the gold standard of league reporting — the Cavaliers have agreed to terms with the Atlanta Hawks on a trade centered around shooting guard Kyle Korver.
The details appear to be that the Cavaliers will be sending the Hawks a 2019 first round pick and backup small forward Mike Dunleavy Jr.
While this deal is a pretty big indicator that the Hawks, who are 19-16 and currently the fifth seed in the Eastern Conference, are not particularly optimistic about their future. They've reportedly been shopping all-star power forward Paul Millsap to several teams, and now Korver is headed to the conference leaders.
For the Cavs, this move may not be quite as big as it seems. Dunleavy has struggled in the early going this season, shooting 35% from deep — below his career average and the first time since 2010 he's been under 38% from outside the line. Being 36 and having had back problems don't help the inconsistencies either. He's had a tough time finding a comfortable spot in Cleveland's rotation due to his streaky shooting and less-than-stellar defensive reputation.
Speaking of less-than-stellar defensive reputations; Kyle Korver. Korver is unquestionably one of the best three-point shooters the NBA has ever seen. He's eighth on the NBA's all-time three-point percentage list, hitting a ridiculous 42.9% of them for his career. He'll most likely take Dunleavy's minutes directly, considering they're similar players in many respects. Korver will also be a stop-gap as the Cavs are facing some injuries and need guys who can score on the second unit — particularly with JR Smith's catch-and-shoot abilities sidelined for another two to three months.
The trade is certainly an upgrade for the Cavaliers. It's not going to take them from the third best record to first, but it is an upgrade for the second unit and provides even more lethal shooting to surround LeBron James and Kyrie Irving.