You can also find our review of wing players the Cavs may be interested in this off-season here.
You can review the list of free agents for Free Agency that opens tomorrow, Monday 7/1/13, here. In the list we highlighted players we thought were possible interest to the Cleveland Cavaliers. In this article we take the time to specifically look at bigs (Centers and Power Forwards) from that list. Honorable mention is the idea that has spread amongst Cleveland blog sources, trading for LA Lakers Pau Gasol. This idea popped up following the lack of qualifying offer to Wayne Ellington leaving the Cavs with almost $20 million dollars in cap space, almost the exact amount needed to bring in Gasol.
Samuel Dalembert - Center – Dalembert is a veteran center who provides very little from an offensive end but can use his veteran moxy to score in the post or with garbage points. Dalembert’s most likely contribution is on the defensive end. Expect the Cavaliers to offer a 1 year deal, with possibly a first year salary of 6 million dollars, and a team option for the second year.
Nikola Pekovic – Center – Pekovic is a restricted free agent. Pekovic is a bruising 5 man who flourishes in the low post. Pek would provide the Cavs with more bulk in the post to deal with players like Roy Hibbert. His low post game would compliment #1 overall pick Anthony Bennett. Based on his restricted status, and Minnesota’s desire to please Kevin Love, Pek will probably draw a 3 to 4 year deal with an annual salary starting at $10 million. That is probably to much for the Cavs to risk in next years cap space.
Andrew Bynum – Center – The much maligned, and injured, Bynum has probably seen his last time as a 76er, before ever playing a minute for the team. With the addition of Nerlens Noel, the 6ers are moving on from the failed Bynum trade. Bynum, like Greg Oden, is a high risk high reward possibility. Due to injury history Bynum is most likely to get a “make good deal” of 1 year, with a high salary and a team option for 2014. If the Cavs don’t pickup Gasol in a trade or make a offer to Pekovic expect Bynum to be the next high dollar pursuit over the first few days of free agency.
Tiago Splitter – Center – Splitter is a unique case study. Starting for the past few years next to Tim Duncan has provided him with invaluable experience. During that time Splitter failed to live up to expectations with the Spurs and was often replaced with Matt Bonner or in the finals with Boris Diaw. Splitter may get a contract better then his stats indicate. The Cavs would have interest in a 2 year deal starting a little over $6 to 7 million dollars. Splitter will probably want a higher average salary for more years, but if his price falls look for the Cavs to pounce.
Paul Milsap – Power Forward – Millsap is the floor of what the Cavaliers hope Anthony Bennett can be. A undersized power forward with good range, rebounding and explosiveness. Milsap may fail to receive the offer he is expecting this off-season which will either lead him to returning to Utah. Its also possible that Milsap is this years David West, signing a 1 or 2 year deal with a high annual salary to play for a playoff contender.
Carl Landry and David West – Power Forward - Landry and West fit together for this post. Both players played for conference competitors this year and it would take alot to get them off of those teams, if those teams offer appropriate value to the players. Landry and West combined would be the perfect Power Forward with Landry’s defense and West’s offense. Both provide a veteran presence and stability that the Cavs would benefit from. Neither would seem to be interested in a one year deal from the Cavs so the only way they will be able to pull them away from their current teams is a big 2 year deal, starting no less then $8 million dollars.
It will be interesting to see how the Cavs pursue another big to fill out their roster. Whether through trade or free agency it seems like there will be an additional big man added on. Whether the Cavs look to move Anderson Varejao this off-season is also of interest, depending on who the acquire and the cost of doing so.