The Cavs haven’t completely closed the door on Carmelo Anthony. According to Joe Vardon of Cleveland.com, the Cavs are exploring “the very slight possibility” of acquiring ‘Melo by the Feb. 23 deadline. Vardon also notes the likelihood of Cleveland acquiring Shelvin Mack– a move not aimed at postseason depth, but helping rest LeBron James and Kyrie Irving as the season winds down.
While the Cavs hold “basement-level low” expectations of completing a deal for Anthony, the Knicks could consider offers for lesser players in an attempt to move him by the deadline.
More from Cleveland…
- Iman Shumpert carries “real value” on the trade market, Terry Pluto of Cleveland.com writes. Capable of filling in at the Two or Three, Shumpert has improved his long-range shooting to a career-high 42.5% from beyond the arc. While Shumpert is due to make $10.3MM in 2017/18, Pluto reminds readers of his value- citing Matthew Dellevedova’s $38MM deal as a comparable example. As of this morning, the Timberwolves were thought to have “strong interest” in Shumpert’s services.
- LeBron James’ heavy workload has been a point of contention this season, and it appears the four-time MVP is ready to accept additional rest in the second half. “Me being a competitor, me playing the game that I love every single day, I don’t always have the right assessment of me playing a lot of minutes,” James told Marla Ridenour of the Akron Beacon Journal. “That’s why I have Coach Lue and the coaching staff and the training staff to be like, ‘Hey, LeBron, you’ve played six straight Finals, you’ve played this amount of minutes, let’s take it easy today. Let’s take today off.’ That’s what they’re going to do.” James has averaged 37.5 minutes per game this season, compared to 35.6 MPG in 2015/16 and 36.1 in 2014/15.
- Learning to play alongside James was a humbling experience for Irving, Marla Ridenour of the Akron Beacon Journal writes. “I was trying to figure it out all at once so it took a while, it didn’t look perfect. A lot of the arrogance I had and the aura that I had I had to let go of completely,” Irving said. “Let go of that complete ego, the selfishness that we all want to have it and being that player every single night. The truth is you can still be that player with other great players, you’ve just got to figure out how to do it.” Averaging a career-best 24.4 points, Irving will suit up for his fourth All-Star game tonight in New Orleans.