Cavaliers send Isaiah Thomas to Lakers

Feb 7 2018 Cleveland OH USA Cleveland Cavaliers guard Isaiah Thomas dribbles the ball in the third quarter against the Minnesota Timberwolves at Quicken Loans Arena. Mandatory Credit David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

He is a scoring sparkplug who was a legitimate candidate for Sixth Man of the Year while with Los Angeles.

The Cleveland Cavaliers kicked off a insane final few hours before the trade deadline by agreeing to send Thomas and Channing Frye to the Lakers in return for Jordan Clarkson, Larry Nance Jnr and a protected first-round pick this year.

As for Cleveland's first-rounder, it could be used as a bargaining chip on trades or spent by the Lakers outright.

While Thomas and Frye can absolutely contribute to the Lakers for the remainder of this season - though Frye makes sense as a buyout candidate - both of them are on expiring contracts while Clarkson and Nance will make a combined $14.8 million next season.

Wade, who signed with the Cavs in September following a buyout deal with the Chicago Bulls, is headed back to his old team in the Miami Heat, according to a report from ESPN. And Larry Nance Jr.is useful.

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The Cavs also acquired Rodney Hood and George Hill as part of a three-team deal later in the afternoon, sending out Jae Crowder and Derrick Rose to the Utah Jazz and Iman Shumpert to the Sacramento Kings. The only question/caveat is that the Lakers have no need to showcase him if he's going to leave anyway, so those politics could eat into his minutes.

Both Thomas and Frye will give the Lakers some much needed 3-point shooting.

The Cavs look a little different after Thursday's trade deadline. While Thomas struggled on the floor, he didn't help himself with some peculiar off-the-court comments. When they will provide that help is up for debate. So, it is not hard to see where Thomas was coming from.

Well, that could be wishful thinking.

While he has played a part in the Lakers' rebuild to this point, Clarkson's contract ensured that he would not be a part of their long-term plans.

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Thomas has appeared in only 15 games for the Cavs since joining from Boston, after being hindered by a hip injury. Opposing teams would feast on that defensive pairing.

Saying things haven't gone as planned for Thomas is an understatement.

The team traded a shocking amount of players but received quite a bit of talent back in the deals. With Hill gone, Fox should get every minute that he can handle for the rest of the season.

We will also learn a lot about head coach Luke Walton. Walton has not been afraid to juggle the lineup this season, but Thomas should have to earn his keep just like everyone else has.

The 5-foot-9 superstar automatically becomes the Lakers' most dynamic player but is not expected to get in the way of Lonzo Ball, the point guard drafted second overall and labeled the "face of the franchise" by Johnson last summer.

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