Multiple NBA writers are reporting the Cleveland Cavaliers are close to trading big man J.J. Hickson to the Sacramento Kings for small forward Omri Casspi. ESPN.com's Marc Stein tweeted the news first, while Sports Illustrated scribe (and former Kings beat writer) Sam Amick added more information, saying, "Omri Casspi was told by Kings management that he is likely to be traded to Cleveland for JJ Hickson in the next couple of hours."â†µâ†µ
Hickson, 22, is a three-year veteran with career averages of 9.1 points, 8.7 rebounds, and 49.5 percent shooting. He's coming off a campaign in which he posted career-highs in scoring, rebounding, and assists, as well as a career-low in shooting percentage. The Cavaliers' selection of power forward Tristan Thompson in the 2011 NBA Draft indicates they believe he has a brighter future than Hickson.
Casspi will fill a need for Cleveland, as the only small forward it has under contrat next season is the raw Christian Eyenga. The 23-year-old is a veteran of two NBA seasons and owns per-game averages of 9.5 points and 4.4 rebounds. Perhaps his best asset is his ability to space the floor, as he's shot 37.1 percent on three-pointers in his career, on an average of three attempts per game.â†µâ†µ
According to Amick, Casspi, the first Israeli player to appear in an NBA game, is excited to join the Cavaliers. "I'm happy," he told Amick. "It's a great opportunity for me to play. They don't really have a 3-man."