While the Cleveland Cavaliers have a decision to make in 2 days they are also working towards a long term plan for the team’s free agency. The Cavs are planning to build around Kyrie Irving, the #1 pick and some of their young assets. They could figure out ways to get under the salary cap to have 2 max type level free agents this summer come to their team. NBA Reports have abound that LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony are interested in playing with each other and now the Cavaliers are trying to figure out the cap implications of pairing Irving, James and Anthony according to Sam Amico:
While dissecting draft options, sources say Cavs also exploring options on how to house LeBron, Carmelo and Kyrie under salary cap.
— Sam Amico (@SamAmicoFSO) June 24, 2014
Obviously first they have to get both to want to sign in Cleveland then figure out all the different trades and moves they would have to make to make it possible. James could choose to take a discount as his merchandise sales would skyrocket with the Return of the King storyline playing out. Anthony seems very interested in money but could winning with James, and living near James and letting their families grow up together, be enough to draw him to Cleveland?
For the Cavs the answer is simple enough: If the best player in the league and one of the Top 10 to 20 want to come join your team you figure it out. Add in Irving, another Top 10, 20 player, and the #1 pick and you have yourself a solid team that you can build around. The Cavs would have to move out a few of their young assets to make it all work but should still have a quality team with depth around their 3 stars.
The question it raises for the NBA Draft is how would that pairing be impact who the Cavs drafted? If free agency was before the draft and the Cavs signed James and Melo the team would most certainly look to pair either Andrew Wiggins, at shooting guard, or Joel Embiid, as the man in the middle, with the 3 stars. Jabari Parker would make less sense with that core group.
Obviously that is not the order of things in the NFL and the Cavs shouldn’t plan around James and Anthony. Nor should they plan around James alone, where all 3 of the choices could fit well with James. Instead the Cavs have to make plans for the best option but have other plans in place in case they fall through.
What do you think of a Irving, James, Melo and the #1 pick core for the Cavs over the next 4 years?