1. Caris LeVert
LeVert, like Prince, was involved in the trade that sent Harden to Brooklyn. LeVert played 74 games with the Pacers, averaging 19.6 points per game. During the 2021-22 season, he was traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers before the trade deadline. The Cavs acquired him because they wanted to add a spark plug scorer, but his scoring totals reached the lows of his first few seasons in Brooklyn. To start this season, he has seen an uptick in minutes, shots attempted, and shots made.
The Pacers drafted LeVert with the 20th overall pick in the 2016 NBA Draft but traded him to the Nets a few weeks later for Thaddeus Young. LeVert saw his point totals increase every season with the Nets. When the NBA had to move to the bubble, the 29-year-old led the Nets in scoring, averaging 23.1 points. Irving didn’t play in the bubble, and LeVert carried the Nets to a 5-3 seeding record, where he was awarded All-Seeding Games Second Team.
LeVert is averaging 18.8 points per game off the bench for the Cavs. This is his highest-scoring season since 2020-21. LeVert, who leads the NBA in scoring off the bench, has a case for the Sixth Man of the Year award.
The Cavs need consistent shooting, and if he can deliver what he was supposed to when they initially traded for him, he will help Cleveland leap into the upper echelon of the Eastern Conference.