Kevin Porter Jr. Trade Grade: Rockets take low-risk home run swings as Cavaliers prioritize culture


Kevin Porter Jr. is traded according to the Houston Rockets Athletic Shams Charania. The Cleveland Cavaliers will receive a protected second-round pick in the deal. Porter, the No. 30 overall pick in the 2019 NBA Draft, spent his cheating season in Cleveland, but had not played so far this season due to personal issues.

Porter originally dropped to No. 30 due to character concerns. In August, he was accused of punching a woman according to a Clivelpiece report, and in November he was arrested on suspicion of possessing a weapon and marijuana. Porter reportedly resented after moving his locker to a different part of the locker room earlier this week, which led to Cleveland’s decision to either trade or release him.

Porter had a very promising cheating season. He scored 10 points on 44 percent shooting, but pushed the lead to more than 14 points per game during the stretch from late January to early March, when he got more playing time. He did enough to surprise him for something in that time, if not him, and not 5 overall pick Darius Garland, the proper long-term partner for Coleen Sexton in Cleveland.

Now, he will suddenly join the crowded Rocket backcourt. The locations currently occupied by John Wall and Victor Oladipo are occupied, and are as well equipped as veteran Eric Gordon. He leaves Porter to compete for reserve minutes with players such as Mason Jones, Ben McLemore and Danuel House.

But Houston is unlikely to contest anytime soon as James Harden is now playing for the Brooklyn Nets. Taking high risks, high-reward swings on youth is usually a prudent step in such circumstances. On paper, this is the kind of move a rocket should make. We saw a glimpse of his potential in Cleveland. Now, the rockets will be expected to get more consistent production than the first round. Here’s how the two teams changed the deal.

Cleveland Cavaliers: C-

Ignoring the circumstances, this result is a complete disaster for Cleveland. The Cavs got 50 games out of the porter. He traded four second-round picks and $ 5 million in cash to pick and pick the No. 30 pick. Now, they only get one pick back. Cleveland is not Oklahoma City or New Orleans. Coby Altman is not sitting on top of a mound of property that he can burn at his leisure. Losing all those pix that eventually need to be dumped is a worthwhile loss.

But given that Cleveland is surprisingly a 7-7 start through 14 games, it’s a fair loss. It was considered a reconstruction season, and reconstruction seasons provide a degree of patience. The Cavs from last season may have been able to work with Porter through their issues. But with Garland and Sexton breaking up and a sudden stellar defense, Cleveland seems to have a priority culture over talent. This is a sensible option. Based on his game so far this season, Garland has proven his place as a long-term starter in Cleveland. It beat the porter, an easy pill to swallow, regardless of its raw ability. The Cavs would not want to help the guards any time soon.

But accountability is universal, and now a young team has seen for the first time what happens when someone does not buy into the program. This is still a bad outcome for a young team that is still far from true controversy, but the Cavs managed to make lemonade from these lemons.

Houston Rockets: B +

We have to start with a clear cavity here. Porter’s position is messed up. The lack of demand for his services fueled charges against him. This would have been enough to keep him away from many teams, and what happened in the locker room earlier this week did not help at all. This grade is purely based on the move as a basketball transaction, and in that area, it is a prudent addition.

Right now, Houston has a crowded backcourt. This can change quickly. The widespread belief around the league is that Victor Oladipo will leave the Rockets in free agency. If the Rockets continue to flounder, they can easily flip him to a deadline in a deal that brings in more draft capital and opens up minutes. If that is indeed the rocket-chasing route, it would indicate a full-scale rebuild over the next several seasons. It is a wise course of action. Houston controls its first-round pick in 2022 and 2023, but not in 2024, 2025 or 2026. The Rockets are encouraged to go as bad as possible in that two-year window so that the Thunder have their long-term nucleus until they start sending pix.

A good way to get bad is to spend minutes developing young players. Players are available upside down with Porter for the price paid by Houston. In an ideal world, he would struggle through his growing pains over the next few seasons and develop into someone capable of helping the Rockets win by the time the Thunder began to collect on its debt. is. There is no guarantee that he will ever overcome the issues that Cleveland traded on him, but for a second round pick, Houston does not need him. They can cut it should the need to invest very little arise.

The Rockets are not yet a picture of stability, but James Harden is gone. They could theoretically transition to a period of relative normalcy that he has now left, and swinging at talented youngsters is something that normal rebuilding teams do. Porter may have benefited from a strong culture, but if the team that can provide such an environment is interested, she will probably be playing for now. Houston was the team that wanted him. This indicates his desire to make the necessary commitment to his growth, and given the playing time that is likely to be available soon, this is a chance for a clean start on a team with low expectations. About as much as Porter can ask for now.

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