The Cleveland Cavaliers appeared to move a step closer Friday to completing a trade to acquire sharpshooter Kyle Korver from the Atlanta Hawks.
The Cavaliers and Portland Trail Blazers swapped first-round picks in 2017 and 2018 in a move to help Cleveland complete the deal for Korver, who sat out Atlanta’s game Thursday night in New Orleans and reportedly did not accompany the team to Dallas for a game Saturday.
Cleveland is seeking another perimeter shooter with guard J.R. Smith expected to be sidelined until the end of the regular season after undergoing surgery to repair a broken thumb. The 35-year-old Korver has shot 43% from long range during his career and has the eighth-most three-pointers in NBA history with 1,952.
According to reports, the Cavaliers will send guard Mo Williams and forward Mike Dunleavy as well as their 2019 protected first-round pick to Atlanta for Korver. The deal is expected to be finalized Saturday. The Cavaliers needed to reacquire the 2018 pick from Portland because NBA rules do not allow a team to trade away consecutive first-rounders.
The Hawks, meanwhile, had reportedly been looking for another team to acquire Dunleavy as part of a three-team trade. It appears Atlanta cleared a spot on its roster for Dunleavy by waiving forward Ryan Kelly on Friday.
Korver said Thursday that he had mixed emotions about a trade.
“There are a lot of heart ties to Atlanta for a lot of reasons,” said Korver, who spent five seasons with Atlanta after two in Chicago. “A lot of friendships, relationships. That’s where I had my best basketball. That’s where I had all my kids. So it’s hard to leave that behind.
“Obviously, it’s a great opportunity for me to go to Cleveland so I’m very excited about that part. But there are a lot of relationships that I care a lot about here and I’m going to miss.”
Korver, who has been pursued by Cleveland as a free agent in the past, is making $5.2 million in the final year of a four-year, $24-million contract he signed with Atlanta in 2013.
The Dallas Mavericks and their fans should be done in time to watch the Dallas Cowboys play their NFC divisional playoff game. The NBA team announced Friday that tipoff for its Jan. 15 game against Minnesota was being moved up two hours to 1 p.m. Central. While the Mavericks didn’t offer a reason for the time switch, the Cowboys’ home playoff game that day starts at 3:40 p.m. … The Phoenix Suns waived guard John Jenkins. The 6-foot-4 former Vanderbilt guard also has played for Atlanta and Dallas in his five-year NBA career. He has career averages of 5.1 points and 12.8 minutes.
Associated Press reports contributed to this story.