CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - To say Andre Drummond was caught off guard by the trade that sent him from Detroit to Cleveland would be an understatement.
“Thought it was a joke at first,” Drummond said after his first practice as a Cavalier on Saturday. But the punch line never came, just a one-way ticket to Cleveland. He’s fine with that now. “The record doesn’t faze me because I see a bright future here in Cleveland,” Drummond said of the 13-39 Cavs. “The young guys here are really, really good. Just with the addition of myself and Kevin (Love) being healthy, we can do special things here.”
Will he be here long enough to do anything special? This year is shot. He does have a player-option on next season, just do not expect an answer on what he will do with it.
“I just got here, man, I haven’t even unpacked a bag, I haven’t thought about anything,” Drummond said.
Drummond and Kevin Love have known each other for years, they have the same agency - Excel Sports Management.
“Kevin and I have a great relationship,” Drummond said. “He was the first person to call me and truly was ecstatic to have me here because ... we didn’t know what was going to happen during the trade deadline. To be here with him, knowing somebody I’ve had a relationship with for a long time is great.”
How will that relationship work out when the two are fighting for the same rebound? “We already know [how] that’s going to go down,” Drummond said with a smile.
“The numbers don’t lie, so there ain’t going to be very much fighting.” Drummond averages 15.8 rebounds per game, six more than Love.
John Beilein was excited to get his new player on the floor, and noticed things he liked right away.
“He threw a couple of really nice passes and just his talk on the floor was really good,” Beilein said when asked what stood out to him. “Saw him pulling Collin (Sexton) aside and saying, ‘Listen, I’m going to set this angle screen if I see a guy guarding you this way.’ That was really good. He brings more than just this great 6-10 NBA body. He brings a lot of intangibles is what I sense after just knowing him not even 24 hours. He solves a lot of problems for a lot of teams I think.”
Drummond wants to work with the young backcourt.
“Definitely with the guards, the young guards, I’m definitely looking forward to working with them and shedding some insight both on offense and defense,” he said. “I think I can really help them out. As a back line of defense, definitely communication is going to be huge with them. I know they’re young and they’re still learning, but if I can help them get past that curve a little bit early, I think we’ll be very good.”
Drummond is expected to be in the starting line up for the Cavaliers game on Sunday against the Clippers at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse.