Cavaliers in rebuild
Acquire Dellavedova, Henson from Bucks
Another popular Cavaliers player is coming “home.”
LeBron’s gone. Delly’s back.
The Cavaliers have agreed to a trade with Milwaukee that will return fan favorite Matthew Dellavedova to Cleveland along with forward John Henson and a pair of draft picks in 2021.
The Bucks will get veteran point guard George Hill and forward Sam Dekker from the Cavaliers, a person familiar with the deal said.
Milwaukee has agreed to trade Dekker to the Washington Wizards for center Jason Smith and a future secondround pick.
The deals are pending league approval and could be finalized as early as later Friday night, said the source. The firstround pick in 2021 is protected, the person said.
There was an urgency to get the deal agreed to before 6 p.m. on Friday because only players on rosters by then can be re-packaged in other trades before February’s deadline.
Hill recently returned after missing 11 games with a shoulder injury, and the Cavaliers have been shopping him around for a deal. Dekker has also been sidelined with a severely sprained left ankle.
Both Hill and Dekker were at Quicken Loans Arena preparing for a game against Sacramento before learning they were being moved.
Dellavedova’s scrappiness endeared him to Cleveland fans during his three seasons with the Cavaliers, who didn’t re-sign the player known as “Delly” after winning the 2016 title.
The Cavaliers are 5-19 and in transition after LeBron James left them as a free agent this summer, effectively ending Cleveland’s run as an Eastern Conference power. But the Cavaliers are thinking about the future and by moving Hill and Dekker, they’ve picked up more assets.
Cleveland recently traded sharpshooter Kyle Korver to Utah for two picks in 2020 and 2021. The Cavaliers are targeting 2020 to land a big-name free agent.
Dellavedova will get a chance re-start his career with the Cavaliers. The Australian had been buried on Milwaukee’s bench and averaging just 1.7 points and 2.4 assists in 12 games.
Henson recently underwent surgery to repair a torn ligament in his left wrist. He’s averaging 5.6 points and 5.1 rebounds in 14 games.
As he prepared to return for a second time from a sore right knee, Miami guard Goran Dragic said that he believes he got it right this time. “I had to battle myself, because I wanted to be there,” Dragic said of missing eight consecutive games before rejoining the team for the six-game trip that opened Friday night against the Phoenix Suns at Talking Stick Resort Arena. “The knee just didn’t allow it to. There was a little bit of frustration, but the only thing that I could control was to do fitness every day, try to do everything that the staff was saying. And finally the time came that I could come back.” Dragic missed two games in early November with pain in the knee before coming back with an 0 for 7, scoreless outing in a home loss to the Washington Wizards.
Center Damian Jones underwent surgery for a torn left pectoral muscle. Golden State said that Jones had the procedure Wednesday in Chicago, performed by Dr. Benjamin Domb. Jones is expected to begin the rehab process in six weeks with a timetable to be determined based on his progress. Jones, a third-year pro out of Vanderbilt who developed in the G League last season to emerge as the starter for the two-time defending NBA champions, was injured Saturday at Detroit. The 23-year-old Jones started in 22 of his 24 games, averaging 5.4 points and 3.1 rebounds in 17.1 minutes. Golden State had an opening at center following the offseason departures of JaVale McGee, Zaza Pachulia and David West.
Philadelphia rested center Joel Embiid in their game at the Detroit Pistons. It’s the first game all season that Embiid has missed. Coach Brett Brown said he thought it was the right move for the long run. Embiid was drafted in 2014 but has only played 120 NBA games because of injury problems. He shot 5 of 17 from the field in a loss at Toronto Wednesday night.
Former Milwaukee guard Matthew Dellavedova, middle, is fouled between Detroit’s Langston Galloway and Bruce Brown. Dellavedova was acquired by the Cavaliers Friday.