Hornets Acquire Scotty Hopson

1:23pm: The deal is official, Charlotte announced via press release, which also revealed the Hornets will receive some cash from the Cavs. The exact amount wasn’t disclosed, however.

1:12am: The Hornets will receive Scotty Hopson from the Cavaliers in a restructured version of a draft-night trade agreement between the clubs, reports Jason Lloyd of the Akron Beacon Journal (Twitter link). Brendan Haywood and the rights to No. 45 overall pick Dwight Powell are headed to Cleveland, Lloyd adds, so Hopson is essentially replacing Alonzo Gee, who was in the original version of the agreement. The Cavs sent Gee to New Orleans on Friday in a separate trade. The net effect will likely be the same for the Hornets, since it appeared they were primarily seeking cap flexibility in the deal.

Hopson’s contract, like Gee’s, is non-guaranteed. The 24-year-old appeared in only two games for seven minutes during his brief Cavs tenure, and it’s his only NBA experience, having spent the rest of his pro career overseas. The Cavs signed him using their room exception this past March to a prorated deal for the waning days of 2013/14, with a non-guaranteed 2014/15 salary tacked on. It was something of a clumsy maneuver for the Cavs, since they could have signed a long-tenured veteran to the minimum salary and tacked on a greater non-guaranteed salary for 2014/15, thus giving themselves a more attractive trade asset. Using the room exception also forced the Cavs to give Hopson a significantly higher prorated salary for 2013/14 than they would have doled out if they’d signed him or someone else to the minimum salary.

Cavs GM David Griffin redeems himself with his acquisition of Haywood, whose unusual contract sets him up to become a valuable trade weapon next summer, as I explained. Powell, a power forward from Stanford, joins No. 33 overall pick Joe Harris among second-round picks vying for a roster spot with Cleveland this year.

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