The Cavaliers have exercised their fourth-year contract option on Dion Waiters, general manager David Griffin announced Saturday. This move gives the Cavs $21.48MM in guaranteed salary commitments for the 2015/16 season. But that figure doesn’t include a total of $41.17MM in player options for LeBron James, Kevin Love and Mike Miller. It also doesn’t factor in Tristan Thompson, who will be a restricted free agent next summer if he doesn’t sign an extension by Oct. 31st.
The decision on Waiters isn’t surprising, as he has become a big part of Cleveland’s rotation during his two seasons in Cleveland. Last year with the Cavaliers, he averaged 15.9 points, 3.0 rebounds and 2.8 assists in 70 games. Waiters was selected fourth overall by the Cavaliers in the 2012 NBA draft. He is scheduled to make $4,062,000 in 2014/15 and $5,138,430 in 2015/16.
During his time in Cleveland, Waiters hasn’t quite developed as rapidly as the team would have hoped. A natural point guard, he’s still adapting to his move to the wing, and his high turnover rate (2.1 per game) and low field goal percentage (42.4% for his career), have held him back from having more of an impact on the court. With the additions of James and Love, and with the continued development of Kyrie Irving, Waiters won’t likely average 13-14 shots per game, so his numbers are likely to take a slight hit.