Could Michael Redd return to Ohio?
After adding two new players via the NBA Draft, the Cavaliers now turn their attention to free agency. The free agency period began Sunday morning at 12:01 AM Eastern and teams are now allowed to begin negotiation with restricted and unrestricted free agents. Deals can be agreed to, but nothing can be officially signed until July 11th.
What do the Cavs intend to do in free agency? Well, not a ton. Chris Grant has stated multiple times that he wants the core of this team to come from the draft and be made up of young players that grow and develop together. That means they likely won't be throwing any huge offers at free agents. Instead, they'll use their significant cap room to try and fill some minor roles and bring back their own players.
Grant made it clear that brining back Alonzo Gee is their first priority in free agency. The team extended a qualifying offer to him and he is now a restricted free agent (along with Luke Harangody and Semih Erden). The Cavaliers now have the ability to match any offer that another team gives Gee. Personally, I just hope they don't overpay for what I believe to be a backup wing player. Anything more than 4 million a year is probably too much for my liking, but they'll probably end up spending it.
The other things that the Cavaliers likely want to do during free agency include getting a veteran player, a backup point guard, and possibly another big to come off the bench. Any big rotation that includes Erden and Samardo Samuels is not ideal. The Cavaliers have expressed interest in Chicago Bulls center, Omer Asik, but it seems as though he will be getting a massive offer from the Houston Rockets. I think Asik is a great defensive player, but $8 million a year for a guy that only plays one half of the game is too much. The Cavs are known to have interest in a guy like Michael Redd to fill the veteran void left by the departures of Antawn Jamison and Anthony Parker. They want a mature veteran to offer some guidance in the locker room. As long as he gets the vet-minimum and barely plays, I'm cool with it.
We also mentioned that the Cavs might look into signing Jonny Flynn as Kyrie Irving's backup. It seems as though he is getting plenty of interest around the league (for whatever reason) and doesn't appear too keen on the idea of coming to Cleveland. That's fine with me. He's not good anyway.
Other targets may include Sonny Weems, Ian Mahinmi, and various other cheap options to fill out the roster. The Cavs would prefer not to use a plethora of D-Leaguers this year. I know this isn't the most exciting free agency plan, but it's the right one. The Cavaliers are not ready to compete yet and it's smart to build the core of the team through the draft and develop your own culture. The Cavs can find a few stopgaps here and there, but free agency is not a big part of their process, for now. Once Kyrie cements himself as an elite point guard and the Cavs are put back on the map a little, I expect the Cavaliers to be much more aggressive. But for now, we'll just sit back and let other people throw max contracts at Roy Hibbert and pay Omer Asik $8 million to play 28 minutes of defense each night.