Cleveland fans probably have more questions than there are answers following the team’s disappointing playoff exit. Brian Windhorst has already answered one of those questions- namely will LeBron sign an extension this summer. (The answer is not likely, in case you missed it.)
More questions include decisions from Anderson Varejao (more than likely will opt out), Zydrunas Ilgauskas (more than likely will pick up his player option) and Ben Wallace (hinting at retirement). There are also decisions to be made about free agents Wally Szczerbiak and Joe Smith.
Everyone is sure to offer an opinion on what the Cavs will need to do in order to win a title/keep LeBron happy. One rumor floating around now is that the Cavs will sign former Piston cry-baby Rasheed Wallace-
My sources say that Rasheed Wallace and the Cavs are beginning talks on a two-year deal worth about $10 million per for the services of the former Piston. The move and negotiations were inspired by Dwight Howard’s dominant performance over Cleveland’s big men in the Eastern Conference Finals. And Wallace will be brought in for that very purpose, to neutralize Dwight Howard next season and help the Cavs get over the hump.
Alright, first off how in the world does Rasheed Wallace neutralize Dwight Howard? Is the 35 year old Wallace going to hustle down the court and stop Dwight from getting deep post position in transition? Is Sheed going to out-muscle Howard and keep him off the offensive glass? Are we talking about the same Sheed that absolutely laid an egg in the playoffs against the Cavs this season? Forget the chemistry problems (I know, you don’t care about chemistry anymore) this just doesn’t make sense from a basketball standpoint. I know, he can still hit the outside shot, but if you think that is enough to keep Howard out of the paint and open the lane you are crazy.
I looked into the stats, and Howard’s numbers were actually better than his average against the Pistons this season, despite Orlando’s team struggles against the Pistons (22 points and 15 total rebounds a game). Let’s just say it wasn’t Dwight that kept the Magic from winning those games.
The article in Slam does mention the Zach Randolph possibility. I would be much more interested in Randolph than Sheed, even though Randolph isn’t exactly known as a stellar defender.
One more rumor to throw on the fire. Do you think the series would have been any different if the Cavs had Charlie Villanueva to guard Rahard Lewis? Me too. Apparently Charlie would be a fan of a move to the city Moses Cleaveland invented-
“I understand the situation Milwaukee is in financially,” Villanueva told Coleman. “They don’t want to go over the cap or what not (actually the luxury tax level). Whatever team decides to make the best offer, I’m going to think about it.
“Cleveland definitely is not a bad spot. I’ve played with LeBron. I played with LeBron in the McDonald’s All-American Game, and we played well together. Is there a possibility? Yes. Will it happen? Time will tell.”
Coleman asked Villanueva if he could be a difference-maker in helping Cleveland reach the NBA Finals.
“I think I would be able to help out a lot,” Villanueva said, “just the fact I bring my versatility and create mismatch problems. One of the reasons Orlando is in the Finals is because of Rashard Lewis. They have a legitimate big man (Dwight Howard) that demands attention, and they surround him with guys that can play on the perimeter.”
Yeah. I’ve wanted Charlie for a while. I admit it. Even after he choked Big Z, I still wanted him here. Make this happen Mr. Ferry. Someone is going to pay way too much for Andy Varejao. I’ll take Charlie V. as his replacement.