The Cavaliers had talks with the Pelicans about a potential Timofey Mozgov trade, but it didn’t go anywhere, as Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports reports in his latest edition of “The Vertical” podcast (audio link, scroll to 53-minute mark). Omer Asik was involved in some talks as well, but Cleveland had no interest in doing a deal, Wojnarowski adds. The Yahoo Sports scribe reported earlier this month that the Cavs had begun to explore the market for Mozgov, who’s making $4.95MM this year in the final season of his deal. See more on the Eastern Conference leaders:
- No one has wanted to acquire Kevin Love more than Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge, Wojnarowski says in the same podcast (scroll to 51-minute mark). Still, podcast guest and Yahoo colleague Chris Mannix suggests it’s too soon for the Cavs to trade Love, who just re-signed with the Cavs to a five-year max deal this past summer. Cavs GM David Griffin wants a versatile, defensive-minded wing player, Mannix hears, speculating that Jae Crowder would fit that bill.
- Griffin has indicated in the wake of David Blatt‘s firing that the onus is on the players to put the team first, though with little recourse for major roster changes, new head coach Tyronn Lue would likely be the one to face the consequences if the Cavs don’t perform up to their potential, as USA Today’s Jeff Zillgitt examines. “Our most glaring need is to understand and communicate role delineation and team sacrifice,” Griffin said. “We have to have group buy-in and team-first habits in order to become the team that intend to be. We don’t have to concern ourselves with expectations of a destination. We need to work towards tomorrow and honor one another with total commitment every single day.”
- LeBron James was pointed in his denial that he’s ever undermined a coach in the wake of rumors that he was behind the dismissal of Blatt and sought to have Erik Spoelstra fired, saying that it “does suck that people want to throw my name in dirt for no particular reason, because of speculation or whatever the case may be.” Jason Lloyd of the Akron Beacon Journal has the details.