According to the Vertical’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the Magic are “intrigued” by Griffin while looking into other candidates. He also notes that other teams believe Griffin could be lured away from the Cavs by other teams.
Per the report, Cavs owner David Griffin has been unwilling to pay Griffin a salary on par with that other teams competing for world titles. By comparison, Spurs GM R.C. Buford and Warriors GM Bob Meyers both reportedly make at least $8 million a year. Griffin reportedly makes around $5.8 million.
Per Wojnarowski’s report, the Magic are willing to wait until after the NBA Finals to engage Griffin and will let Assistant GM Matt Lloyd continue to work as the interim GM.
Losing Griffin would be a blow for Cleveland. He’s been designer of the Cavs’ roster that won the title last year and has helped the franchise make moves despite being well above the salary cap. And it’s not directly clear who would replace him were he to take the Magic’s job.
Perhaps this is a leverage move from Griffin’s camp, a classic move of playing one offer of another to get a higher one from somewhere else. And, with Cavs coach Tyronn Lue signed to a five-year deal worth $35 million and Cleveland sporting the league’s highest payroll, there seems to be some hesitation from Gilbert’s point of view to pay big money for a GM as well.
As the Cavs continue their postseason run and move towards the offseason, this may be the biggest decision Cleveland has to make off the court and the one with the biggest potential impact.