Cavaliers to bench Andre Drummond until they complete a trade

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David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

The Cleveland Cavaliers recently acquired Jarrett Allen in part of the NBA blockbuster four-team trade that sent James Harden to the Brooklyn Nets. As a result, the need to keep Andre Drummond long-term was eliminated as Allen fits the timeline of their young core.

According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the Cavaliers no longer plant o play Andre Drummond until they complete a trade. Cleveland feels as though it’s unfair to limit Drummond’s minutes as they move forward with Allen as the long-term answer at center.

“The Cleveland Cavaliers are no longer planning to play Andre Drummond as they work to trade the two-time All-Star center before the NBA’s March 25 deadline, sources told ESPN.

“The Cavaliers are moving to make Jarrett Allen the franchise’s long-term starting center and believe it’s unfair to Drummond to limit his minutes as the organization transitions to Allen, sources said.”

This situation comes with little surprise as Andre Drummond wore a hoodie that read ‘farewell’ when entering the arena for the Cavaliers’ matchup with the Los Angeles Clippers on Sunday. He did not play in the game due with ‘rest’ being listed as the reason on the injury report.

Drummond, 27, still has plenty of high-level basketball to offer and is in the midst of an impressive season. He has averaged 17.5 points, 13.5 rebounds, and 2.6 assists despite playing 28.9 minutes per game. It’s his first season averaging below 30 minutes since 2016-17.

Since Drummond’s first All-Star season in 2015-16, he’s managed to lead the NBA in rebounds per game during four seasons. During all of those years, he surpassed the 30 minutes per game threshold. That goes to show how his impact can shine when being a featured player.

There was recent speculation from analysts about the possibility of the Cavaliers and Andre Drummond agreeing to a potential contract buyout, but Wojnarowski also reported that no discussion of that nature has occurred between the two parties.

The Toronto Raptors have been mentioned as a possible trade suitor for Andre Drummond due to their glaring need in the frontcourt. Others have speculated the Boston Celtics as being a fit as well. There has been far more traction behind the Raptors as a landing spot than the Celtics, so far.