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Roundtable: Grading the Cavs’ summer, remaining roster spots and most interesting rookies

Checking in during a slow, slow Cavs summer.

Boston Celtics v Cleveland Cavaliers Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

The Cavs are having a very slow summer, but there have at least been some developments. Here’s a short roundtable to give you insight in the middle of the dead period — check back on Friday for part two.

To date, what is your favorite move of the Cavs’ summer? What about your least favorite?

Chris Manning (@cwmwrites): I like how aggressive the team was in trading to get Kevin Porter Jr. They loved in the draft process and got him at a pretty good value slot in the draft. He’s the right kind of player to role the dice on and I’m really curious

On the flip side: why not find a way to bring back David Nwaba? It really seems like last year was mostly a favor to someone more than finding a diamond in the rough type. He’s good, even if he’s not a reliable shooter.

Evan Dammarell (@AmNotEvan): There really aren’t that many moves to talk about when it comes to favorites. Personally, I think drafting Darius Garland, Dylan Windler, and Kevin Porter Jr. was the team’s best move to date. All three are great foundational pieces that will hopefully help the Cavs long term.

My least favorite move was not being able to retain David Nwaba. The Cavs likely wouldn’t have been able to afford him, but it’s still tough to see Nwaba go. He is overall a solid wing, especially on the defensive end and would have gotten plenty of minutes this year with the Cavs. The Nets got a good one.

Zac Lockwood (@thezlock): I think my favorite move might have been drafting Dylan Windler, if only because he would be a great fit on a good team in the modern NBA if he turns out. When you think about teams that went from lottery to contention through good ol’ fashioned team building, it’s because they get the most out of guys who fit the system. Shooters on the wing almost always fit the system.

I’m with Evan here. I wanted Nwaba to stick around but his “look what I can do” season with the Cavaliers paid off for him and now he’s on a team with Kyrie and KD.

Not counting Exhibit 10 signee J.P Macura, the Cavs have a 13-man roster. What should they do with their last spots?

CM: I like the idea of leaving one open just to see if someone interesting comes available during the season or it helps make pulling off a trade easier. If they are to sign one more player, I’d like the idea of signing a vet like Vince Carter to lead the locker room, a playable young vet like Nik Stauskas to provide some needed depth or roll the dice on a G League standout like Yante Maten, who the Heat recently waived and put up huge numbers in the G League. Any path they choose is probably fine, although Carter is the most fun outcome.

ED: I’m still on board with the idea of going after Vince Carter. When Channing Frye retired, the Cavs lost a veteran leader — which is especially important for a rebuilding team like Cleveland. Also, with how fluid the situation could be with Tristan Thompson and Kevin Love, the Cavs more important veterans, is the team should look to fill out at least one roster spot with a veteran. Enter Carter, who has been a part of rebuilding situations in Sacramento and Atlanta and has willingly accepted it, and he could be huge in assisting with the team’s development. That, and a Cleveland Carter jersey would be quite the collector’s item.

ZL: Sign Kevin Love’s dog, Vestry. If that won’t work, then maybe Blossomgame or McRae or another of the guys that have flowed through here at random points.

Rank your interest in the following Cavs rookies: Darius Garland, Dylan Winder, Kevin Porter Jr.

CM: 1) Garland, 1A) Porter, 3) Windler. Garland is something of a mystery based on not playing in a year, how John Beilein will deploy him and what he can Collin Sexton will look like. Porter Jr., despite being picked much later, is right there for me since he’s uber talented with some flaws and looks like a guy who will somewhat shaped by the Cavs’ purported investment in infrastructure and culture in this new era. Windler is interesting too and looks like he’s going to take a crap ton of three-pointers from deep. But his ceiling is just lower. I think he might play more than Porter has a rookie, though.

ED: I’d rank it 1) Garland, 2) Porter, 3) Windler. I think Garland is the biggest mystery of the three considering how little he played at Vanderbilt and I’m intrigued to see how he will mesh with Collin Sexton. After that, Porter is one of the more polarizing rookies this year due to the fact he has the potential to be a serious contributor this year or could spend the better part of the season in the G League. With Windler, I think he’s the safest of the bunch and will be able to get serious burn this year, especially after considering the Cavs’ depth at small forward.

ZL: Garland-Windler-Porter. I think you’ve just got to be super interested in the No. 5 pick and the Sexland back court is going to be something exciting and intriguing. If we’re lucky, it’ll be good, too. I like the idea of Windler and I think he could realize his full potential in just a few seasons of NBA shooting and training programs. While I think his ceiling is a seventh or eighth man in the rotation, that’s still a player that you have in your shortened playoff rotation, and that’s where we want to go sometime, right? And Porter is definitely something interesting, but I’m not too obsessed with him just yet considering he’s a guy they took a flyer on at the end of the first round. Either he becomes something or doesn’t. The weight of it just doesn’t force my attention.