In an attempt to add another productive player to their championship efforts and shed some luxury tax money off the bill, the Cleveland Cavaliers are relentlessly trying to trade Brendan Haywood, reaching out to the Los Angeles Lakers, Phoenix Suns and Los Angeles Clippers, while the Brooklyn Nets are “old” news in this category.
The deal with the Nets is for Joe Johnson, but he is going to be paid over $24 million next season, and that means including Anderson Varejao and probably one more player. In short, very difficult to make it happen, especially with Varejao reportedly not included in the discussions right now.
The Los Angeles Clippers deal might include Jamal Crawford. The Cavaliers seem to be looking for more scoring, but can the Clippers actually afford to lose another meaningful player? One who has been the third best scorer on the team for the last three seasons?
With the Lakers it’s hard to see what the Cavaliers can get. Nick Young? It’s hard to believe they’d want to touch him, but J.R. Smith seemed untouchable last year and he had a very good season, although it’s not helping him get a new deal. The Lakers need to shed some salary, and dealing Young for Haywood and then releasing the center (unguaranteed deal before August 1) would help them in their Brandon Bass, Lou Williams and Roy Hibbert signings.
As for the Suns, Markieff Morris seems to be on the trading block. He has an $8 million per season deal for a number of years. With Kevin Love on a long term contract and so will Tristan Thompson be pretty soon (although things are moving slowly) it’s unlikely the Cavaliers try to add him to the mix, right?
The centerpiece, in any case, is Haywood. Never a truly remarkable player, there was a time when he was a decent center to have when it comes to rebounds and some defense. He even had some sort of feud with LeBron James back in the days when the Wizards kept getting knocked out of the postseason by the Cavs. He has a $10.5 cap number, but he can be cut by August 1. The Lakers are so bad they might actually try to keep him, who knows? He averaged 1.6 points per game last season.