9:28am: The lack of playing time that Allen would see in Cleveland dissuades him from signing there, and the Cavs don’t want to cut a player to make room, Windhorst indicated, so it appears there isn’t interest from either side (audio link at 36:40 mark).
8:38am: It’s still unclear whether Ray Allen will play in the NBA this year, but if he does, it won’t be with the Cavaliers, as Brian Windhorst of ESPN.com said today in an appearance on ESPN Cleveland radio (Twitter link). The Cavs had seemingly been the front-runners for the 18-year veteran since the summer, but it appears that’s no longer the case. Executives around the league have been growing increasingly pessimistic that the sharpshooter will be back this season to add to his all-time record for the most three-pointers made.
Several other teams still seem interested. Ronald Tillery of The Commercial Appeal wrote as recently as a week ago that the Grizzlies would still like to sign him. Windhorst wrote earlier this month that the Cavs were among a group of teams that included the Warriors, Wizards, Spurs, Heat and Hawks who had kept in touch with Allen’s camp, and Clippers coach/executive Doc Rivers said around the same time that he’d recently spoken to the sharpshooter. Jason Lloyd of the Akron Beacon Journal wrote as the All-Star break began that the Cavs had been in touch with Allen’s reps no more than a few days prior, so it appears Cleveland’s departure from the Allen sweepstakes is fairly recent.
It’s unclear if the Cavs lost interest or if Allen decided he doesn’t want to play for the team. Cleveland, which has a full roster of 15 players whose contracts run at least until the end of the season, is on a roll, having beaten the league-best Warriors on Thursday. It was the 18th win in the past 20 games for the Cavs, who could only offer a prorated minimum salary to Allen even if they were to sign him. Cleveland’s already close to $5MM above the luxury tax threshold, so any deal would only add to a long list of expenditures for owner Dan Gilbert.