Sure, it’s a trade that might seem kinda irrelevant … but on the other hand, it’s also very relevant in the short term, given the big name and the teams involved.

The Los Angeles Lakers on Friday agreed to trade guard Rajon Rondo to Cleveland for guard Denzel Valentine, a deal that is salary-cap triage on the Lakers’ end and backcourt triage on the Cavs’. All of it, of course, is driven by salary cap and luxury-tax rules and those two teams’ efforts to manage those limitations.

In Cleveland’s case, it needs a point guard now. Like, right now. Darius Garland is in COVID-19 protocols, and Collin Sexton and Ricky Rubio are out for the season. Even quasi-ballhandlers like Cedi Osman are in the protocols. The only guard left standing is little used Kevin Pangos, a veteran import from Europe in his rookie season. I was on the Pangos bandwagon, but he has struggled mightily thus far, failing to create separation and generate advantages at the offensive end for a team with no other ballhandlers. He’s still gonna end up playing no matter what since he’s the only guy left who can dribble, but Cleveland needs more.

Enter Rondo. He’s available, now, and they can easily acquire him, now, without a lot of haggling. This isn’t the endgame move for Cleveland at all; I’m sure the Cavs will still be in the market for the Dennis Schröders of the world as we get closer to the trade deadline. But the Cavs can’t wait. They might have a top-four team in the East if they can just survive for a few weeks.