Caught in the whirlwind of Dolan Salary Dumping 2009 was the quiet front of the Cavaliers and their never-ending plan to make this team better. Many thought that the additions of Shaquille O’Neal, Anthony Parker and Jamario Moon would be it until at least August when the team would then look to add another power forward or point guard. Or both.
Thankfully, Brian Windhorst shed some light late last night: the Cavs are still not done adding pieces to the 2009-10 roster. The latest comes on the forward front with a pretty solid name thrown in to the mix.
According to a league source, the Cavs have a contract offer out to a forward and are hoping to get an answer within the next few days. That forward is believed to be Hakim Warrick, a 6-9 athletic big man who has played the past four seasons with the Memphis Grizzlies.
The team is believed to be offering its biannual exception, which would be just under $2 million for this season, plus a player option for the 2010-11 season.
Warrick, who is reportedly fielding a few offers from others around the league, had his name dangled right out of the gate this offseason as the team looked to add a power forward. Sure, he was not as high on the list as others like Charlie Villanueva or even Trevor Ariza, but that did not mean that there was no interest. Once the team added Jamario Moon, however, thoughts appeared to be shifting to the backcourt as some felt that we needed to address the depth behind Mo Williams and Delonte West as primary ball handlers.
The recent release of Tarrence Kinsey coupled with the strong summer and potential guaranteed deal for Jawad Williams, and adding another guard would make that much more sense.
However, as the team currently stands, there is still a need for a power forward that can score points and contribute in the paint. JJ Hickson showed flashes of potential to be the answer in this regard, but with his back issues continuing through the summer, Danny Ferry may have no choice but to add a player that can fill that gap. For his career, Warrick has averaged 17 points, seven rebounds, one steal and a field goal percentage of 50 per 36 minutes. He is not the best free throw shooter, and isn’t a defensive stopper, but he isn’t completely absent-minded on that end of the floor.
Using net48 numbers in a vaccum is a bit misleading in Warrick’s case due to the fact that the Grizzlies were outscored very often last season. Teams scored an average of four more points per game when Hakim was on the floor. For comparison purposes, the Grizz gave up 6.4 points more when OJ Mayo was on the floor; Seven points more when Rudy Gay was on the floor.
Some may be concerned about Warrick’s ability to hit the mid-range jump shot – eFG% of 37.2 on jumpers. However, the bulk of his shots come with less than 10 seconds remaining on the shot clock showing that he does not take unneeded shots and has the mold of a strong role player. His execution in the paint is what makes him an attractive option for this dollar amount.
Windhorst also touched on Leon Powe, Rob Kurz and even mentioned the sharp shooting Steve Novak. Regardless of who the team lands between now and October, it has to be relieving to see a Cleveland team actually adding talent instead of shipping it off during the mid-summer months.
(Update: Warrick has reportedly agreed to a one-year deal with Milwaukee. No word on how much he will make while playing for yet another sub-.500 team.)