The Cavaliers are on track to lose a pair of contributors when the July moratorium ends tomorrow, with Timofey Mozgov headed to the Lakers and Matthew Dellavedova ticketed for Milwaukee. Still, while the Cavs haven’t agreed to deals with any free agents of their own yet, the team is scouring the trade and free agent market looking for ways to fortify its roster. According to Chris Broussard of ESPN.com (via Twitter), Cleveland is looking to add at least one athletic, shooting wing player.
While there may still be a few players on the free agent market who fit that bill, the Cavs don’t have much spending flexibility, and would likely only be able offer their $2.9MM room exception or a minimum-salary contract. The trade market may make more sense for Cleveland, and according to Broussard, the club had interest in acquiring Trevor Ariza. However, the Rockets weren’t looking to move Ariza at this time.
As our list of outstanding trade exceptions shows, the Cavaliers still hold a handful of TPEs that could be used to accommodate deals. The most intriguing one is the $9,638,554 exception Cleveland created at the 2016 trade deadline. Using that trade exception, the Cavs could acquire a player whose salary fits into that amount without sending out any salary of their own. Ariza, for instance, could be absorbed into that TPE, since he’s making just $7,806,971 this season.
The Cavaliers could also send out their own players to make a trade work, but the franchise isn’t all that interested in significantly shaking up a roster that’s coming off a championship. If Cleveland did need to send out salary to accommodate a larger acquisition, Iman Shumpert ($9,662,922) and Channing Frye ($7,806,971) would probably be candidates to be moved.