Concerns about Isaiah Thomas’ injured hip and when he could return to action have stalled a deal that would send him alongside Jae Crowder, Ante Zizic and a 2018 first rounder from Brooklyn to the Cavaliers in exchange for Kyrie Irving.
It’s been reported that the Cavaliers would be seeking some significant assets in order to complete the deal, but a report from ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski indicates that the asking price has lowered significantly.
Cleveland and Boston officials started to engage each other on a solution on Tuesday, league sources told ESPN. Cleveland is no longer seeking one of the Celtics' top young players or significant draft picks, league sources said. The Cavaliers could be inclined to complete the deal for a late first-round pick or second-round considerations, league sources said.
This certainly seems to indicate that this could get done in the near future, as the hurdles to get Boston to relinquish a second round pick or even a late first to finally grease the wheels on the deal are much, much more likely than the idea of Danny Ainge letting Jaylen Brown, Jayson Tatum or the Lakers first round pick go.
This is a deal that the Cavaliers potentially won, assuming an eventual return to health for Thomas, so if the Cavaliers are confident he could return in a reasonable time, an additional compensation could be a cherry on top.
Wojnarowski also reports that Boston felt like it was appropriately forthcoming with information about Thomas’ hip:
All along, Boston has believed it was clear in its assessment of Thomas' physical status and that the information was communicated to the Cavaliers in the conversations before Tuesday's trade, league sources said.
Thomas has denied that the hip will cause long-term problems, but it remains to be seen if the Cavaliers agree. The reality that they’ve stopped pushing for high-end assets to complete the deal might indicate that the damage isn’t devastating.
Unfortunately, we really won’t know until the situation plays out. But it at least appears like this deal is going to get done when you read between the lines.