Trade rumor centered on Cavs’ Drummond, Celtics’ Hayward falls flat

Cavaliers center Andre Drummond looks to pass during a game against the Wizards.

It appears the Cavaliers may have at least tried making a move beyond making a pick in the NBA Draft.

But with the way things look today, any dream of a deal centered on Andre Drummond with the Boston Celtics is dead.

According to Sports Illustrated insider Chris Mannix, a swap of Drummond for Celtics small forward Gordon Hayward was “a possibility.” Mannix said that while speaking on an NBC Sports Boston special during Wednesday’s NBA Draft. He cited discussions with league executives for the reason it warranted mention.

As usual, any such talks would have been complicated by financial matters — with no one being certain what Hayward would do with his $34.2 million player option.

Somewhat astonishingly, Hayward decided to walk away from that money and try his hand at free agency. It is believed he is being heavily pursued by the New York Knicks and Indiana Pacers (with his home state Pacers the early favorite) — but not the Cavs.

Meanwhile, Drummond did indeed pick up his own option, worth $28.7 million. It seems the Cavs were just fine with that, though the sides haven’t been able to come to terms on any sort of extension. So the idea that they may look to deal Drummond isn’t exactly far-fetched.

Along with that, Celtics president Danny Ainge is a known risk-tasker. The Celtics have reportedly had their eye on Drummond. They wouldn’t be concerned with the fact he’s in a contract year. But Hayward is no longer on their roster.

Hayward could always re-sign and maybe the Drummond speculation could be revived. That seems highly unlikely. Besides, it hasn’t been determined if as so much as a minute of conversation was ever held. Or if there were, how far those talks advanced.

Mannix is a former Celtics sideline reporter and a respected NBA insider. He knows the franchise and the league well. He’s very in tune with what’s going on.

So it doesn’t take Dr. Sheldon Cooper of the “Big Bang Theory” to decipher what could’ve gone on here. The Celtics like Drummond. The Cavs may be worried about extension talks. The Celtics had no clarity on what Hayward would do next, or if he wanted to return.

Apparently, he doesn’t. But that’s the Celtics’ problem.

The Cavs don’t consider the Drummond situation a problem. If they want to trade him, they don’t need to do it right away. (Though if they already know, there is no sense waiting.)

For the Cavs, all we really know is Drummond will enter training camp on a large contract, and a contract that allows him to become an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season.

The Cavs don’t want to lose him for nothing, so working the phones a little would make sense. And if they haven’t had talks involving Drummond already, you can bet they will fairly soon.

About the Author

Sam Amico
Sam Amico is the founder and senior writer of Amico Hoops. He has covered the NBA on a full-time basis for both Sports Illustrated and FOX Sports, and has been a regular contributor to CBS Sports, the Boston Herald and

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