Cavaliers say they didn’t mortgage the farm to trade for Timofey Mozgov

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The Cavaliers were reportedly close to a trade with the Nuggets for Timofey Mozgov.

Now, it’s done.

Cavaliers release:

The Cleveland Cavaliers have acquired center Timofey Mozgov and a 2015 second round pick from the Denver Nuggets in exchange for two protected 2015 first round picks (via Oklahoma City and Memphis), Cavaliers General Manager David Griffin announced tonight.

Cleveland conveyed to Denver its right to Oklahoma City’s protected first round draft pick and its right to Memphis’ protected first round draft pick. The Cavs received Denver’s right to the less favorable of Chicago’s own 2015 second round draft pick and Portland’s own 2015 second round draft pick.

That second rounder wasn’t mentioned in the initial reports, so that makes the trade look a little better for Cleveland – emphasis on little. The Bulls and Trail Blazers are good enough to ensure that pick falls in the low 50s.

As a reminder, the Grizzlies’ pick is protected 1-5 and 15-30 this year and next, 1-5 in 2017 and 2018 and unprotected in 2019. The Thunder’s pick is protected 1-18 this year and 1-15 the next two years and becomes two second rounders if not conveyed by 2017.

Cavaliers general manager David Griffin, via Ethan J. Skolnick of Bleacher Report:

Mozgov gives the Cavaliers their highly coveted big man, a need that became more pronounced after Anderson Varejao’s season-ending injury. With little question, Mozgov makes Cleveland better. Whether he’ll justify surrendering two first rounders is another question.

Griffin is correct that Cleveland had plenty of assets to work with, but this deal and the one that acquired Iman Shumpert and J.R. Smith cashed in a lot of them. The Cavaliers can now trade only one future first rounder, their 2021 selection. Their other key asset, Brenan Haywood’s contract, won’t bear fruit until the offseason, when his salary shoots up and the deal becomes unguaranteed.

If the Cavaliers didn’t mortgage the farm to get Mozgov, they sold off most of the livestock. The property remains, and that’s valuable, but there’s not much leeway to paint the barn or install a new fence.