In the final NBA transaction before the owners locked out the players on July 1st, the Cleveland Cavaliers traded talented big man JJ Hickson to the Sacramento Kings for small forward Omri Casspi. The swap allowed Cleveland to clear some space from its crowded power forward position, while filling a glaring need at the small forward position once manned by LeBron James. It also allowed Sacramento to add a talented, yet flawed player with tremendous potential, all while clearing out its crowded small forward situation.
The trade also involved a draft pick, as the Kings sent a heavily protected first-round pick to Cleveland. However, the protections on the pick make it so that Cleveland will only acquire it this season if the Kings make the playoffs. For a Kings team that finished second to last in the Western Conference this season, that seems like an unlikely scenario. Despite the seemingly tall odds against it, there are several reasons to believe the Sacramento Kings will make the playoffs, thereby transferring their 2012 first-round draft pick to Cleveland and making this trade very successful for the Cavaliers. Here are five reasons for Cavaliers fans to be optimistic about this trade.