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2018 Offseason Team Needs: Cleveland Cavaliers

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The Cleveland Cavaliers were a one-man show throughout the course of the 2017-2018 season, led by LeBron James. With the lack of depth on this team, Koby Altman is going to need to add some serious core players to try and lure LeBron James into returning. The Cavs have four players who are going to be free agents, three of which will be UFA’s. Point Guard Jose Calderon will likely be resigned for veteran experience, mainly because he will barely make a dent in the salary cap (Veteran minimum). Center Kendrick Perkins served more as a coach, and won’t be brought back. Small Forward Jeff Green will probably look to follow James in free agency. Lastly is restricted free agent Rodney Hood, who has been a proven scorer his career thus far, and will likely land a respectable deal.

Cavs’ Needs/Position Breakdown

1: Point Guard

This should be the Cavaliers’ biggest focus. Jordan Clarkson and George Hill both have terrible contracts for their respective outputs. The playoffs clearly showed that they’re both not deserving of their deals, with Clarkson set to make $12.5 million next year and Hill just under $20 million. The Cavs need a serious improvement here and with having the 8th overall pick in this upcoming draft, they could look to add Oklahoma PG Trae Young. A potential trade the Cavs could make to bolster their PG depth is by making a trade with the Charlotte Hornets. Sending the 8th pick and Clarkson for Kemba Walker. Leaving them with a proven guard in Walker and a veteran in Hill to backup, which would be a upgrade from this past season.

2: Shooting Guard

J.R. Smith and Kyle Korver headline the Cavs shooting guards. Both have had respectable careers but failed to contribute in the playoffs. The duo of Smith and Korver, when confident, excel offensively. Though neither Smith nor Korver contribute much on the defensive end. Former Celtic and UFA Avery Bradley could be someone the Cavs look to add to their roster. His defensive presence would give the Cavs a huge improvement from this past season. Being able to add a player with Bradley’s skill set at the defensive end should be a priority for Altman.

3: Small Forward

With the likelihood that superstar LeBron James leaves Cleveland, this position will have a gaping hole in it. Keep in mind Jeff Green will also likely leave the Cavs. RFA Rodney Hood likely will be re-signed, as he is a proven score who can also play solid defense. The Cavs could re-sign James and not have to worry too much about finding a solid backup, due to the heavy workload James takes on himself year after year.

However, don’t rely on James signing though. Wilson Chandler, who spent this past year with the Denver Nuggets, averaged 10 points per game and slightly above five rebounds per game. Chandler could earn himself a nice pay day with the Cavs if he declines his player option for the upcoming season. If available at the 8th pick, Cleveland should look to add former number one rated prospect Michael Porter Jr., who missed most of his freshman year at Missouri due to back surgery.

4: Power Forward

Kevin Love and Larry Nance Jr. make up the power forward depth for the Cavs. Love has recently stated he wants to finish his career as a cavalier. While also stating he wants James alongside with him. Due to a lack of cap space, unfortunately the Cavs won’t likely make any major changes to this position.

5: Center

Unfortunately for the Cavs, Tristan Thompson has a very outrageous contract, limiting the Cavs to bringing in additional help at the five. Ante Zizic, who came along in the Kyrie Irving trade package, isn’t necessarily an ideal backup. In the unlikely event Thompson was willingly to take a pay cut, Altman will have difficulties adding help. The center position was thought to be fading away, while in reality it is quite the opposite. Players like DeMarcus Cousins and Joel Embiid have shown this position still has tremendous value to a teams success.

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