After a disappointing end to the season, the Cleveland Cavaliers have been exploring ways to close the gap between them and the Golden State Warriors. Despite having limited roster flexibility and tradeable pieces, the Cavs are attempting to get creative and have already been linked to multiple trade reports this offseason.
So far, the only notable move the Cavaliers have made is to part ways with general manager David Griffin—a position they have yet to fill. But their lack of a general manager hasn’t held back the remaining members of the Cavs front office from actively pursuing a trade.
Cavs Still Pursuing Paul George
George has made it clear that he isn’t interested in re-signing with the Pacers after the final year of his contract in 2018, which has resulted in him being the hottest name on the trade market this offseason.
The Cavs are among the teams in pursuit and reportedly discussed a three-team trade that also involved the Denver Nuggets. According to ESPN.com’s Chris Haynes and Marc Stein, this proposed trade—which fell through on draft night—also involved Kevin Love being shipped to Denver.
Despite the failure of this deal, Haynes and Stein reported that the Cavs are still actively pursuing a trade and believe that if George wins a championship in Cleveland next season, they would be able to convince him to re-sign.
While pursuing George on a one-year deal may scare off most teams, the Cavs can afford to make that gamble. Not only do they have the potential to convince George to stay, but even if he leaves, Cleveland would remain an attractive option for any of the other elite players on the free-agent market in the summer of 2018.
The Pacers are in no rush to ship George out the door, so this is a saga that could continue throughout the summer.
Carmelo Anthony Forcing His Way to Cleveland?
Carmelo Anthony has been the constant topic of hypothetical trade talks among Cavs fans in recent years, but no concrete rumors have ever materialized.
According to ESPN.com’s Ian Begley, former New York Knicks president Phil Jackson was hoping to trade Anthony this offseason, but Anthony’s no-trade clause makes that goal nearly impossible to attain.
As an alternative to a trade, Anthony is now reportedly pursuing a buyout from the Knicks, according to Stein, and the Cavs may factor into his plans:
This is clearly a complicated scenario—and potentially a drama the Cavs don’t even have any interest in joining. But it is a fascinating possibility, especially if Anthony successfully negotiates a buyout and makes himself available to the Cavs on a team-friendly contract in an effort to chase a ring in Cleveland.
Still No GM in Cleveland
Despite being involved in multiple trade conversations, the Cavs are still operating without a general manager. And, despite ongoing talks between the Cavs and Chauncey Billups, the team may be without a GM for a while still, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical:
The Cavs obviously still have a functioning front office in place, so it’s possible owner Dan Gibert and others simply aren’t rushing to get a deal done because they don’t feel any immediate pressure to do so.
There have been no serious reports linking the Cavaliers to anyone other than Billups, so it still appears to be just a matter of time before he accepts the job and officially takes over for the recently departed Griffin.
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