Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports
The Philadelphia 76ers were going to make a move. We all knew that, as Spencer Hawes, Evan Turner and Thaddeus Young have each spent more than their fair share of time in the trade rumors during the 2013-14 campaign.
Turns out, Hawes was the member of the on-the-block trio who got dealt first, although he wasn't the only one.
According to Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski, he was sent to the Cleveland Cavaliers for two second-round picks, which only make a bit of a dent in the stash that Chris Grant accumulated before he was fired. ESPN's Brian Windhorst fills in the details, revealing that those picks are their own selection and the Memphis Grizzlies' pick in the second round of the 2014 draft.
It's an interesting move for the Cavs, who are clearly still trying to make a push toward the playoffs.
On one hand, they're overpaying for the services of a solid starting center who will compete with a crowded frontcourt for playing time. Any minutes he receives—assuming Anderson Varejao gets healthy soon, as expected—will come at the expense of the development of Anthony Bennett and Tyler Zeller.
It would be fine if he were under contract for a few seasons, but Hawes could walk away at the end of the year. He's an unrestricted free agent, and he's likely to carry a hefty price tag as a 25-year-old center with three-point range. Cleveland could be giving up two picks for a half-season rental, and don't make the mistake of thinking second-round picks don't have value.
But on the other hand, Cleveland is determined to make the playoffs, and this will only help. Hawes was having a fine year with the Sixers, and he comes to a hot Cavs squad that acquired him while in the middle of a six-game win streak.
It all depends on your perspective.
If you're tired of rebuilding and futility, then earning a low seed and early playoff exit is worth the expense. But if you're more interested in the long-term future, it's tough to see Cleveland giving up assets so freely. After all, the Cavs have now relinquished a handful of picks for Luol Deng and Hawes, both of whom could walk away this summer.