Shaquille O'Neal to Cavaliers



The Cleveland Cavaliers and the Phoenix Suns have come to an agreement on a blockbuster trade that sends Shaquille O'Neal to Cleveland to team with LeBron James, according to sources.

The deal has been agreed to in principle and is expected to be finalized Thursday, according to sources.

Cleveland will send Ben Wallace and Sasha Pavlovic to Phoenix for the future Hall of Famer. Sources said the Suns will also receive the 46th pick in Thursday's NBA draft and $500,000.

Various links after the jump.

Sporting News:

The deal is expected to be finalized and announced Thursday morning.

The Suns and Cavs had first talked about a deal before last February’s trade deadline. The deal will help the Suns financially, as they can save around $9 million in salary and luxury taxes. The Suns could save even more if Wallace accepts a retirement buyout.

O'Neal is coming off an All-Star season in which he averaged 17.8 points and played 75 games. He’ll give Cleveland, which was eliminated in the conference finals after posting the best regular-season record, an inside force to help LeBron James. He’s also in the last year of his deal, so the Cavs still will have financial flexibility heading into the big free agent summer of 2010, when James can become a free agent.



Cleveland and Phoenix were both juggling multiple trade possibilities with other teams, with the Cavs involved with as many as six trade scenarios.

Yet the disappointing Eastern Conference finals loss to the Orlando Magic left Cavs GM Danny Ferry with incredible pressure to accumulate talent around James in the final season prior to his 2010 free agency. James has blessed the O’Neal trade, especially because it should give his overmatched frontline a chance to compete with Dwight Howard in the playoffs. Ferry and Phoenix GM Steve Kerr are close friends and had talked off and on about a Shaq deal since the February trade deadline.

O’Neal, 37, makes $21 million next season, and the Suns were determined to move him in a package that would save them money. Wallace made $14 million and could take a buyout to retire, and only $1.5 million of Pavlovic’s $4.9 million salary is guaranteed.


Plain Dealer- Windhorst:

Shaquille O'Neal is going to be a Cavalier.

According to multiple team executives, the Cavs have agreed in principle to a trade with the Phoenix Suns to bring the four-time champion and future Hall of Famer to Cleveland. The team is hoping he is the biggest missing piece alongside LeBron James in a quest to win their first NBA Championship....

O'Neal is coming off an excellent season in which he averaged 17.8 points, shot 61 percent and played 75 games. He was an All-Star and was named Third Team All-NBA after dealing with an injury-plagued season in 2007-08.

Picking him up now would serve a couple purposes for the Cavs. First it would give them the massive inside presence they have been lacking and proved to be a stumbling block against the Los Angeles Lakers and Orlando Magic this season.


I tried extracting the best parts from each source to avoid redundancy and add relevant information. Exciting deal for sure.

This is a Fan-Created Comment on The opinion here is not necessarily shared by the editorial staff at FearTheSword

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