The Cavaliers are one of multiple Eastern Conference teams with strong interest in Ben McLemore, league sources tell Chris Haynes of the Northeast Ohio Media Group and the Cleveland Plain Dealer. Cleveland would quickly snap up Joe Johnson if he works a buyout with the Nets, Haynes also hears from league sources, though it doesn’t look like he’s one of the Cavs’ trade targets. Trevor Ariza is also on Cleveland’s radar, Haynes adds, as are Kyle Korver and Jared Dudley, as previous reports indicated, but it’s highly unlikely Cleveland ends up with one of those three, according to Haynes, who paints McLemore as the more obtainable target.
The Kings have so far resisted offers for the shooting guard, Haynes writes, but it’s widely known around the league that agents are pushing to get their players out of Sacramento amid organizational turmoil there, Haynes also reports. Trade candidate Rudy Gay wouldn’t mind a deal that ships him out of town, but the Kings haven’t found any offers for him that pass muster, Haynes hears.
Cleveland isn’t connected to Gay, but it’s a matter of when, not if, the Cavs will make a move of some sort, according to Haynes. The Cavs have been seeking a three-and-D wing player and have been linked to multiple names, including Omer Asik, who’s a center, and Tyreke Evans, who has an injury that threatens to wipe out the rest of his season. They’ve reportedly explored trading Timofey Mozgov, having met with rejection on that front from the Kings and also engaging in talks with the Pelicans that didn’t bear fruit.
Johnson said recently that he wouldn’t dismiss the idea of a buyout from his contract with the Nets, which expires at season’s end, and the Heat, like the Cavs, reportedly want to make a run at him if he shakes free from Brooklyn. One source close to Johnson told Moke Hamilton of Basketball Insiders that Johnson is “miserable” with the Nets and would welcome a change. His nearly $24.895MM would make a trade difficult, so a buyout appears a more feasible route.