CLEVELAND — Editor's note: the video above is from Nov. 18, 2020.
Earlier this week, Cleveland Cavaliers center Andre Drummond picked up his $28.7 million player option for the 2020-21 NBA season.
But according to a new trade rumor, Drummond's time in Cleveland might not last much longer.
Appearing on NBC Sports Boston's NBA Draft special on Wednesday night, Sports Illustrated's Chris Mannix discussed the state of the Cavaliers heading into the third year of their second post-LeBron James rebuild. And in doing so, Mannix revealed that Cleveland has discussed an All-Star for All-Star swap that would send Drummond to the Boston Celtics in exchange for swingman Gordon Hayward.
“Something I’ve been hearing across the league the last few days is while we don’t know how the Gordon Hayward situation is going to shake out, something that could be possible is a Gordon Hayward-Andre Drummond swap,” Mannix said. “That’s something that a lot of league execs I’ve been talking to have discussed.”
As Mannix noted, such a deal could be made complicated by Hayward having yet to have made a decision on his own player option for the 2020-21 season. The 2017 All-Star selection has until 5 p.m. ET on Thursday to make a decision on his option, which would pay him $34.1 million for the upcoming season.
While it's unlikely Hayward would receive a one-year salary as high as his player option, the possibility exists that he could lock in more long-term money by opting out and becoming a free agent. In 52 games last season, the 30-year-old Hayward averaged 17.5 points and 6.7 rebounds -- his best numbers since suffering a catastrophic leg injury in his first game with the Celtics during the 2017-18 season.