We all know that Chris Grant likes to play things close to the chest. While I have no problem with Grant's secrecy, it makes any moves the Cavaliers make hard to predict. Therefore, I'm writing this post to offer my best guess to what Chris Grant is up to.
When Chris Grant promised to be "aggressive" in free agency this year, Cavs fans got excited. The Cavs came into the offseason with three clear holes, at backup PG, backup C, and SF. While draft picks Sergey Karasev and Carrick Felix provide options at SG-SF, it is widely believed that the Cavs are searching for a veteran SF to fill the starting role and deliver quality defense and three point shooting. The only free agent the Cavs have shown a ton of interest in, so far, is PF Earl Clark. Signing Clark, combined with drafting PF Anthony Bennett first overall in the draft, would seemingly create a logjam at the PF position. Therefore, starting PF Tristan Thompson, who Cavs fans believe has a lot of trade value, seems to be more available than ever.
My guess might come as a shock to some, but I have a sneaking suspicion that Chris Grant has something major up his sleeve for the Cavs this offseason. As Dwight Howard retreats to the mountains to decide his future, his suitors have to be worried about a Plan B if they miss out on him. Howard met with with the Rockets, Warriors, Mavericks, Hawks, and Lakers this week.
A lot of people view the Hawks as a long shot, as they don't seem to be a team who can contend for a championship right now. Atlanta used their two first round draft picks on Lucas Nogueira and Dennis Schroeder, two foreign players with a lot of potential but who also offer very little in the short term. If they miss out on Howard and UFA Josh Smith goes elsewhere, as suspected, it is hard to imagine the Hawks making a run at the 2014 playoffs, especially considering the benefits of tanking for a top pick in the hyped 2014 draft.
It just so happens that the current GM of the Hawks, Danny Ferry, is both Chris Grant's predecessor and mentor. Assuming the Hawks miss out on Howard, what is the point of keeping around All-Star PF-C Al Horford and paying him $12 million a year on a losing team? The Hawks would be better off moving Horford for future draft picks and tanking for a high pick in next year's draft. Therefore, my guess is that good friends Chris Grant and Danny Ferry have been secretly discussing a deal for Horford. Tristan Thompson, Tyler Zeller, and a 2014 first round pick for Horford might work for both sides. As I mentioned before, this deal would be contingent on Dwight Howard signing elsewhere, so it would need to remain a secret until Howard makes his decision.
Just a thought that occurred to me. Let me know what you all think.