August 17, 2014

Breaking down the arrival of Spencer Hawes to Cleveland

 David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

A detailed look at Cleveland’s newest headband-wearing big man

The Nitty Gritty

The Cavaliers acquired 25-year old Spencer Hawes from the Philadelphia 76ers in exchange for a package of Earl Clark, Henry Sims, and two second-round picks in this year’s draft. Hawes is set to be a free agent at the end of the season and the rebuilding 76ers were in a position to either trade him at the deadline or lose him for nothing at season’s end. They obviously opted for the former. Earl Clark and Henry Sims can barely be registered as a loss for this Cavs team as neither was garnering consistent minutes within Mike Brown’s rotation. The second-round picks being sent out are the Cavaliers own second-rounder this year, along with the Grizzlies’ second-round pick that they acquired last season. They still own Orlando’s second-round pick this year which, due to the Magic’s awful season, is the most valuable of the bunch.

[Read more...]

While We’re Waiting… Welcome to Cleveland, Spencer Hawes

While We’re Waiting is a space on the WaitingForNextYear website where we share links every day. We’ve been doing it for about four years or so. Denny Mayo used to be much more amusing with his intros, if you recall. You know the drill: Email us with suggestions at


Spencer Hawes certainly fits offensively, but does it really matter? What’s next? “Anderson Varejao, Tristan Thompson, Tyler Zeller, and Anthony Bennett aren’t gangbusters but hardly lack for talent. Redundancy and inconsistency plague the Cavaliers’s big men, deficiencies owed to youth and health concerns that the presence of Hawes will help mask. His three-point shooting affords Cleveland offensive space the others – despite Varejao’s supreme improvement from mid-range – can’t, and he’s helpful as a passer and rim-protector, too.” [Jack Winter/Hardwood Paroxysm] [Read more...]

Cavs and Clippers talking Zeller-Bullock swap

(4pm EST Update: This didn’t happen.)

As the Cavaliers look to get something of substance for Luol Deng, they appear to be also discussing back-up plans at the small forward spot.’s Brian Windhorst, who continues to crush the Cavs beat from 500 miles away, reports that David Griffin’s team is exploring a deal that would net them Reggie Bullock in return for center Tyler Zeller.

Bullock, a 6-foot-7-inch swingman out of UNC, has all of the tools required for a small forward in the Cavaliers offense, excelling in catch-and-shoot situations as well as in transition. He has unlimited range on his jumper, has good size for his position and is a solid wing defender thanks to a 6-9 wingspan, but is very raw from an NBA standpoint. Selected 25th overall in the 2013 NBA Draft, Bullock has been relatively buried on the Clippers’ bench, but has averaged 10 points and five rebounds on a per-36-minute basis.

Interestingly enough,’s Chad Ford pegged Bullock to the Cavs with the 19th-overall pick this past summer, the one that was eventually used on Sergey Karasev.

Clippers coach Doc Rivers reportedly liked Zeller back when he was the coach of the Celtics and the Clippers have no depth behind DeAndre Jordan at center (Sorry, Ryan Hollins.) The Cavs, as you may have heard, recently acquired Spencer Hawes from the Philadelphia 76ers. Moving Zeller would seem to infer that Anderson Varejao’s wonky back is not as bad as it may seem. What this would mean for next season, when Hawes is a free agent and Varejao is one year older, remains to be seen.

While We’re Waiting… Are the Cavs buyers or sellers?

Cleveland sports fans are waiting. Thus, while we’re all waiting, the WFNY editors thought you might enjoy reading. Because you never know how long we might be waiting. So here are assorted reading goodies for you to enjoy. Send more good links for tomorrow’s edition to

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My good friend at FTS shares the usual options, then mentions this possibility too. “And what if the Cavs are actually buyers? Are they willing to put Dion Waiters, Tristan Thompson, and Anthony Bennett in deals for star type players, even as they have put together really good games of late? You would think so. But what about short term deals for guys like Pau Gasol? The team already went out and added Luol Deng. If the team really is hoping to make the playoffs, doesn’t it make sense to give yourself every opportunity to get there?” [David Zavac/Fear The Sword] [Read more...]

NBA trade deadline passes; no new moves from Cavaliers

The NBA’s trade 3 pm deadline came and went for the Cleveland Cavaliers, apparently without any trades being made. Daniel Gibson, Marreese Speights, Omri Casspi and Luke Walton are all still Cavaliers.

The Cavs did make a trade last month with the Memphis Grizzlies of course, which brought them Marreese Speights, guards Wayne Ellington and Josh Selby, and a future first-round draft pick for forward Jon Leuer.

The Cavaliers were listed in several rumors and trade discussions as a partner willing to take on salary to secure draft picks or improve their position. As Thursday’s deadline passed and the high profile names that were tossed around remained with their current teams it is easy to see why nothing more materialized for the Cavaliers.

The “big names” moved at the deadline this year-

J.J. Redick was part of a 6 player deal that sent Doron Lamb to the Magic.

Eric Maynor went from Oklahoma City to Portland.

Sebastian Telfair was sent to Toronto for Hamed Haddadi and a protected second round pick.

The Wizards moved Jordan Crawford to the Celtics for Barbosa and Jason Collins.

[Related: To:NBA From:Kyrie Irving]

The Diff: Cavalier notes on Tristan, turnovers, trades, etc

Thanks so much to all of our WFNY readers (even my friend Terry Pluto) for sharing, liking and commenting on last week’s edition of The Diff about Michael Bourn. I’m heading back to basketball this week to share an assortment of thoughts as the team begins the second half tonight.

The Diff

Tristan Thompson’s progress

One of my favorite new Twitter friends is Ed Manly over at @laughingcavs. I only discovered his account and tremendous website after he responded to me about some Tristan Thompson stats-post Anderson Varejao’s injury. So it’s only fitting that the first time I reference him here at WFNY that it’s again about my favorite-ever Cavalier Canadian1. [Read more...]



  1. For the record, I checked: The only other Canadian Cavalier I could find is Stewart Granger, the 24th pick in the 1983 Draft who played one season in Cleveland. []

Eric Gordon to be inactive for national game against Cavaliers

Though the ESPN trucks are rolling into Cleveland for the team’s first nationally televised game of the season, the New Orleans Hornets will be without star shooting guard Eric Gordon who continues to have issues with his troublesome knee.

“It might be painful for awhile,” Gordon said on Tuesday. “If there’s no fracture then I feel like I need to play.”

Being the second night of a back-to-back stint for the Hornets, Gordon — coming off of a 20-point outing — will be in street clothes as his teammates attempt to rain on the Kyrie Irving parade. Rookie guard Austin Rivers (6.0 points, 2.1 assists per game) will likely get the start.

FOX Sports’ Ohio’s Sam Amico adds that the Hornets continue to be in trade talks with the Golden State Warriors who wish to acquire the 24-year-old Gordon’s services.

Wednesday night’s contest is slated for an 8pm tip-off. Pre-game will feature Mike Wilbon, Earvin “Magic” Johnson, Jalen Rose and Bill Simmons broadcasting from Los Angeles while Mark Jones and Jon Barry will handle play-by-play and color commentary.

[Related: Kyrie Irving makes shots and a few more fans during All-Star weekend]

NBA Rumors: Cavs could trade Speights, Gibson, Casspi before deadline

After making a deal earlier in the week, trade winds are swirling once again regarding the Cavaliers. In Marc Stein’s Weekend Dime on, he talks of the possibility of the Cavs moving newly acquired Marreese Speights, Daniel Gibson, and Omri Casspi.

“Don’t be shocked if the Cavaliers decide to move Speights on again before the Feb. 21 deadline.

The Cavs obviously aren’t in the playoff hunt and word is they’re already receiving interest in Speights, who possesses a $4.5 million player option for next season. The Cavs are also armed with $12 million in expiring contracts and roughly $4 million in leftover cap space for the summer, which means they’ve got the tools to continue to be active before this deadline.”

[Related: Finally some fun for Cavalier fans]

NBA Rumor: Cleveland Cavaliers targeting summer of 2014, LeBron James

The whispers surrounding the worst kept secret amongst NBA circles are growing increasingly louder.

While many fans wonder when the Cleveland Cavaliers will make a move to help win basketball games, it appears that the answer is the summer of 2014 when LeBron James can opt out of his contract with the Miami Heat. In his piece which was filed for the Sunday morning paper, Jason Lloyd of the Akron Beacon-Journal writes that it is almost consenus feeling that Chris Grant and the Cavaliers are looking to bring James back to the Wine and Gold.

“Executives and agents around the league are convinced the Cavaliers won’t do anything to jeopardize their ability to sign a free agent to a max contract during the summer of 2014, when LeBron James can again become a free agent,” writes Lloyd. “As fans in Northeast Ohio continue to howl and remain divided about the possibility of his return, more and more people around the league believe there is a strong possibility James will indeed return to Cleveland after next season.”

It was James who famously left Cleveland after a free agency circus that led to The Decision and the then two-time MVP “taking his talents” to Miami to play for the Heat. He would win a NBA Championship one season later.

Alas, while the Cavaliers continue to have one of the most favorable cap situations in the league, they will not be taking on a bad contract — or one that carries beyond next season — for the sake of adding a four-to-five win player (a la Rudy Gay) this year. With Anderson Varejao injured, this all equates to a quiet trade deadline and a plan that could either blow up in their face similar to the New York Knicks, or allow them to strike gold — like the Heat — in pairing James with one of the best young talents in the game in Kyrie Irving.

James recently switched his representation to Rich Paul, a native Clevelander (and friend) who also represents Cavaliers power forward Tristan Thompson.

[Related: Cavaliers Film Room: The Recipe For Success]

NBA News: Varejao will undergo surgery; out 6 to 8 weeks

The Cavaliers announced today that center Anderson Varejao will have surgery Thursday to repair his injured knee. From the team:

“Cavaliers Center Anderson Varejao was injured during the Cavaliers game against the Toronto Raptors on December 18th at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland. Diagnosis was a right knee contusion, specifically to the vastus medialis which connects to the medial (inner) border of the patella. As Varejao’s treatment and recovery process continued, an MRI revealed the contused area included a small longitudinal split in the vastus medialis. Despite continued, gradual recovery of the contusion, symptoms also continued in the specific area of the split. Another MRI revealed an increase in the split and symptoms persisted. Dynamic ultrasound imaging also revealed tissue from underneath the split was herniating and pinching with knee flexion.

A second opinion was recently obtained with Dr. J. Richard Steadman of The Steadman Clinic in Vail, Colorado, which confirmed Cavaliers Head Team Physician Dr. Richard Parker of the Cleveland Clinic’s recommendation for surgical intervention. Varejao will undergo surgery this Thursday (January 10th) at the Cleveland Clinic and is expected to be out for six to eight weeks.”

The NBA trade deadline is February 21st. For those wondering, that is exactly six weeks from Thursday.

[Related: On the Cavaliers and the prospect of a failed rebuilding attempt]

Sam Amico: Cavs looking to make playoffs, trade into lottery

Take what you will from these tweets by Fox Sports Ohio’s Sam Amico.

Tweet 1:

After Knicks loss, Cavs 2.5 out of final playoff spot. And don’t think they don’t want it or can’t get it. We’re talking about Knicks here.

Tweet 2:

I know all talk in CLE is RG3, but know this much about Cavs: According to latest, they may not need to miss playoffs to get back in lottery

Tweet 3:

Not elaborating on Cavs at moment. But you should be able to figure it out. Working on deal for someone’s lottery pick. That’s all for now.

I like mysteries! And I like pointless speculation! Who might give the Cavaliers a lottery pick?? What would the Cavs have to give up for a lottery pick? Or, more likely, what jerkstore with a terrible contract would the Cavs have to take back?

The first team I thought of was the Washington Wizards. They stink (lotto pick!), they have terrible contracts (paying $30 million Andray Blatche through 2015) and they got knuckleheads (JaVale McGee), so they fit the criteria. But the ‘why’ is bothering me. As in, why would the Wizards, with bunk around John Wall, want to give away lotto picks just to dump salary?

Wait, why would any lotto team give Cleveland a pick just to dump salary?

Sam Drew suggested the Rockets might be Cleveland’s mystery trade partner, as they own New York’s (top-5 protected) first rounder. This makes sense to me. Plus, getting the Knicks pick from Houston dovetails nicely with Amico’s “OMG Cavs might catch the Knicks for the 8th seed!” tweet.

Now, should the Cavs (currently picking 8th) surpass the Knicks for the 8th seed and get New York’s pick from the Rockets, they’d end up drafting 16th (their pick) and around 13th (Knicks pick). If the Cavs were to drop a spot or two and the Knicks made the playoffs, instead of 13 and 16 they’d be picking at 6 and 16 (or something similar).

No matter how the Cavs finish, they’d be doing themselves a huge favor if they could turn either Sessions or Jamison into another first rounder.

Hollinger: Cavs Should Trade Sessions and Gibson in Three-Team Deal

In his first of eight trades that should happen before the March 15 NBA trade deadline, ESPN’s John Hollinger states that the Cleveland Cavaliers should send guards Ramon Sessions and Daniel Gibson to Portland.

It’s who they get back that may surprise Clevelanders. Per Hollinger’s latest PER Diem:

Ramon Sessions and Daniel Gibson to Portland; Jamal Crawford and Greg Oden to Minnesota; Luke Ridnour, Anthony Tolliver and $3 million to Cleveland

There’s been a lot of talk about trading Crawford for Ridnour, and that makes a lot of sense, but I like this one a little better. Sessions is a better player with a shorter contract, and his ability to play the pick-and-roll would help a Blazers offense that’s had some troubles under Raymond Felton’s leadership.

Crawford would be perfect in Minnesota, where he can play mostly off the ball but take turns running the point with the second unit. He can opt out after the season, and probably will, but he’d help the Wolves’ playoff run and they’d have a shot at re-signing him if it goes well.

Ridnour makes some sense in Cleveland, where he makes less money per year than Sessions and could slide in nicely as a steady backup to Kyrie Irving. The Cavs would also get paid, and they would accomplish that by dumping Gibson (owed $2.5 million guaranteed next year) on the Blazers, taking back the expiring deal of Tolliver and getting $3 million from the Wolves to pay the final year of Ridnour’s deal.

On the cover, it’s tough to say what the Cavaliers would be getting out of this deal. Sure, Ridnour “makes sense,” but trading two quality guards — one who is an immense fan favorite — for parts, an expiring deal and additional money doesn’t appear to be the best available offer. The Cavaliers continue to be in the hunt for draft selections. Anything of this ilk screams doing a deal just for deal’s sake.

[Related: Byron Bucks the “Timeout Rule” En Route to Win Over Nuggets]

Vescey: Cavs “Swamped by Calls” Heading in to NBA Trade Deadline

In his lastest column for the New York Post, Peter Vescey states that the Cleveland Cavaliers once again find themselves in the middle of several trade discussions. While Orlando’s Dwight Howard remains the most-coveted pending free agent, it sounds like Cleveland’s Ramon Sessions is the Plan B for several teams, including the Los Angeles Lakers who are reportedly doing “some fast talking.”

Certainly, salary cap space is playing to Cleveland’s advantage.

Having $7.1 million in cap space, Vescey states that Chris Grant and his staff are receiving plenty of teams looking to move draft picks if the Cavaliers, who are “swamped by calls,” are willing to take on an additional contract or two.  Within the last 24 hours, reports surfaced surrounding the Atlanta Hawks looking to move Marvin Williams’ $7 million dollar contract.

While Houston’s Kyle Lowry or Portland’s Raymond Felton are also on Los Angeles’ radar, the cap space posessed by Cleveland make any discussed trades that much easier to complete. It is expected that all trades the Cavaliers make will either involve additional financial freedom or additional draft selections, preferably in the first round.

The 2012 NBA trade deadline is March 15.

[Related: Cleveland Cavaliers Midseason Progress Report]

Scott Credits Defense, Rebounding For Cavs’ Recent Success

The last three weeks have been an odd sight for Cleveland Cavaliers fans this season, as the team has suddenly reeled off three wins in the past five games.

When asked after Friday night’s 115-109 victory over the New York Knicks about what has been the key to this mild success, head coach Byron Scott said an improving defense has been the secret ingredient.

“That’s a great win for us,” Scott said. “I thought our guys are really starting to buy in to what we are talking about, especially defensively, and we’ve gotten much better at that end of the floor, and we are just going to keep trying to improve there.”

But amidst a rebuilding year when the Cavs were on pace for setting historic lows for defensive ineptitude, and after a game where the Knicks still scored 109 points at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, has this really been the case?

[Read more...]

Cavs Finish Second Deal Under the Wire

According to reports the Cavs have made a deadline deal to send a second round pick in the 2013 draft (the one acquired in the Sessions deal) to the Boston Celtics for Turkish center Semih Erden and forward Luke Harangody. [Read more...]

NBA Trade Rumors: Insomniac special: Amar’e deal imminent?

LeBron-James-23-of-the-Eastern-Conference-drives-against-Amare-Stoudemire-1-of-the-Western-Conference-during-the-2008-NBA-All-Star-Game-February-17,-2008After a subpar dunk contest (but some sweet wipeouts in the skiing and short track skating in the Olympics), attention has turned back to the NBA trade rumors. Though no breaking news occured after the Washington/Dallas trade took place, we have been offered up the following details from Brian Windhorst in an article posted last eve:

1) The Cavs are contacting numerous teams, likely try work a quasi-Danny Ferry-esque three team trade. Teams contacted thus far include Washington, Indiana, Phoenix, Philadephia, Utah, and Chicago.

2) The trade talks with the Suns have gone beyond the early stages and have evolved into discussions of many of the small financial details that accompany personnel swaps. Per Windhorst: [Read more...]

Polls: What should the Cavaliers do?

With the NBA Trade Deadline approaching and so many opinions about what the Cavs should do (and who they may be targeting), commenter JimKanicki suggested a poll. Here you are sir. Many thanks to Rick for helping me out with this business.

First – What rumored player (if any) would be best to put the Cavs over the top to win THIS SEASON?

online casino Web Poll

[Read more...]

While We’re Waiting… NBA Trade Deadline, Late-Round QBs, and Kid Griffin to OSU

While We’re Waiting serves as the early morning gathering of WFNY-esque information for your viewing pleasure. Have something you think we should see? Send it to our tips email at

Cavs Trade TargetsThe trade deadline is exactly one week away . . . assuming you are reading this at 3:00 P.M. Eastern on February 11th, 2010.  (If you’re not, please adjust accordingly.)

As usual, there are factions developing among fans: 

There are those that would like to make a trade because they see weaknesses on the team, and strength on the current trade landscape.  There are those that don’t want to make a trade because they see strength on the team, and weaknesses in the trade landscape. 

There are those that want to make a trade because trades are cool and exciting . . . and there are those who don’t know what the hell they think. [Wine and Goldrush]

[Read more...]