Throughout the past four years it seems like no player on the Cleveland Cavaliers has been involved in more trade rumors than Anderson Varejao. On a team going through a rebuild it seemed like he could be a veteran trade chip that could be moved for young assets that would help the team down the road. With the return of LeBron James there's been a systemic shift in the projections for the Cavs over the next few years and it appears like the situation is conducive for Varejao to remain on the Cavs for the rest of his career.
In an interview with HoopsHype (full interview here), Varejao expressed his desire to retire as a member of the Cleveland Cavaliers:
You've played 10 seasons in the NBA, all of them in Cleveland. You will be in a contract year this season. What do you expect?
AV: I want to stay in Cleveland, I really don't think about that. They know what I want to do, they know I want to stay.
Would you like to retire in Cleveland?
AV: I want to.
This is obviously great to hear, but not necessarily surprising. Varejao has been a constant for the Cavs organization throughout his time here. He has grown and improved so much as a player over his career and was one of the few that consistently displayed effort throughout the franchises more ... dysfunctional times.
He also discussed what role he envisions for himself and Kyrie Irving now that the team has an infusion of talent:
Now that Kevin Love is your teammate, will your role change?
AV: I don't think it's going to change. I played with LeBron for six years and what I did was playing defense, setting screens for everybody, fighting for every rebound and being ready on the offensive side when I get the ball.
Kyrie Irving is with Team USA. Do you think this World Cup will help him for the NBA season?
AV: Playing in Spain will be good for him in terms of experience, but things are going to be good for him playing with LeBron as well. He's going to learn a lot from LeBron. I believe this season he could play more like Chris Paul, not having to score so much. Now that we have LeBron, Love and all the guys who can score he's not going to need to go to the basket as much.
As stated above, Varejao is in the final year of his contract. Cap management will be very important for the Cavaliers in order to keep their championship window open as long as possible. With both parties seemingly interested in remaining together long term, it shouldn't be an issue to work out an extension or new contract that works for both the team and Varejao.