Zach Lowe of ESPN.com, citing rival executives, reported Monday the Cavaliers "are acting as if they are not going to trade the Nets pick."
The pick figures to be an attractive one considering the Nets are 19-35 on the season and just 2.5 games ahead of the Atlanta Hawks, who own the worst record in the league.
Even if the Cavaliers were to trade the pick, Lowe granted finding a worthwhile deal "is really hard."
Lowe did point to the Portland Trail Blazers as a possible trading partner with CJ McCollum involved, but he said the Nets' pick and Kevin Love would be too steep a price to pay, and Portland may not want to do the trade if Tristan Thompson replaced Love in the package.
Elsewhere, adding more contracts could be a concern since "the Cavs are already paying a ghastly repeater tax bill," per Lowe.
There is also the LeBron James factor since he has a player option on his contract for the 2018-19 season and could very well hit free agency this season.
On the one hand, keeping the pick would give the Cavaliers an insurance option should James leave. It would be something of a franchise restarter if they could land a potential superstar in the making in the upcoming draft.
On the other hand, James is a once-in-a-generation talent capable of putting the team on his back and leading it to a fourth straight trip to the Finals. Trading the Brooklyn pick would give him additional help in a win-now window when the Cavaliers are attempting to add championship banners that are far from guaranteed in the future regardless of who they draft.
Adding additional playmakers could also theoretically help persuade James to stay in Cleveland during the offseason.
It all adds up to an intriguing situation, but rival executives seem to believe the Cavaliers will hold onto the pick.