Feb 28, 2012; Cleveland, OH, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers point guard Kyrie Irving (2) shoots between Houston Rockets point guard Goran Dragic (3) and power forward Luis Scola (4) in the fourth quarter at Quicken Loans Arena. Mandatory Credit: David Richard-US PRESSWIRE
In case you haven't heard, Luis Scola and Elton Brand have been amnestied by their respective teams. The Philadelphia 76ers and Houston Rockets both want extra cap space, so they let their power forwards go. Both of these players would be interesting additions to the Cavaliers.
Mavericks and Cavs are both interested in claiming Luis Scola, now that the Rockets have amnestied him, according to a source.— Probasketballdraft (@Probballdraft) July 12, 2012
Once a player get amnestied, they go through a waiver claim. It works like this: all of the teams that are under the salary cap are allowed to make a bid. There is a minimum bid based on whatever that player's previous salary was. The bidding is blind, so you don't know what other teams are bidding. The team that offers the most gets the player. Simple, right?
Both Scola and Brand are still useful players. Each was productive last season...they just weren't worth their contracts. After being amnestied, these players suddenly become bargains. Their previous team is still paying a large part of their salary and their new team gets them on the cheap. Because the Cavaliers have tons of cap space, we could see them making a play for either of these guys. The Mavericks missed out on a bunch of big free agents this offseason and would certainly be looking to place big bids on either Scola or Brand.
Scola is a productive power forward with a solid midrange game. He's an effective offensive player, but leaves much to be desired on the defensive end. Similarly, Elton Brand possesses the ability to step out and knock down midrange jumpers, something that none of the Cavs' bigs can do on a regular basis. Brand averaged 11 points and 7.2 rebounds per game last season. Scola averaged 15.5 points and 6.5 rebounds per game. Both are on the wrong side of 30 and basically are what they are at this point in their careers.
My first gut feeling is that the Cavs will place medium sized offers for Scola and Brand, but probably not large enough to actually get either player. They'd be nice additions, but as Chris Grant as said numerous times, they want to build through their own young core. Adding a player like Brand or Scola would be very productive in the short-term but somewhat counterproductive in the longterm. It's no secret that Cleveland wants to develop the two young big man that they drafted in the past two years -- Tyler Zeller and Tristan Thompson. Brand and Scola are probably both upgrades of these guys at the current moment, but they're just quick fixes. If you added one of these veterans, Byron Scott would be handed the difficult task of balancing the playing time of the Cavs' bigs.