The Cleveland Cavaliers may be interested in Mike Conley if Ricky Rubio doesn’t want to come back.
This one is going to hurt to write. I loved Mike Conley when he was at Ohio State and in Memphis. He’s the kind of player I want the Cleveland Cavaliers to always have on their roster. A good guy, with good skills and an eagerness to do what the team needs. The perfect teammate. If this was 2012, I’d be so giddy to get Conley on the roster, but at 34? Sorry, pass.
Unfortunately, that may not be in the cards, as the Cavaliers are apparently interested in Conley if he becomes available. Considering Conley is owed $22.8 and $24.3 million over the next two seasons when he’ll be 35 and 36 respectively, trading for him would be a monumental mistake.
I don’t think there is a trade, in recent Cavaliers history, that would be as poor as any trade involving Conley to Cleveland. Not even a deal built around Caris LeVert, who I think the team would be better without, would satiate me. Conley’s deal bogs down the Cavs’ ability to make moves and his declining play has made him far from reliable.
Conley’s name is on the table due to the fact that Ricky Rubio, while some believe is a lock to return, is a free agent. He can decide to go anywhere and he opts not to return to Cleveland, it sounds like the Cavs may shift focus to Conley, partly due to JB Bickerstaff’s past with him in Memphis.
On the latest HoopsHype podcast (via Yahoo Sports), Michael Scotto and Chris Fedor spoke about the Cavs’ need at point guard, saying;
"Scotto: Personally, I’d like to see them bring back Ricky Rubio. I thought he was perfect for them. Kevin Love would be all about it.Fedor: My sources tell me there’s mutual interest in that (Ricky Rubio) reunion. In fact, some people are essentially penciling him in as on the roster. I wouldn’t go that far with it. It’s complicated because even though he’s a great fit, there are some variables here. How good and effective is he going to be coming off a second torn ACL? You’re not going to get him until about midway through the season. The earliest would be November or December."
Mike Conley isn’t a bad option just a bad trade option for the Cleveland Cavaliers
There is a scenario, albeit an unlikely one, where Conley could be a free agent. No one with a clue is trading for a 35-year-old with declining skills and a two-year deal worth nearly $50 million left on it. They just aren’t. There isn’t a trade where one of the worst contracts in the NBA gets moved. Sorry.
Yet, if the Utah Jazz isn’t able to make nice with stars Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell, or if the franchise believes they’ve gone as far as possible with both men, and opt to trade them for whatever reason, then Conley could get bought out.
After all, why keep Conley around if you part ways with the franchise stars of Gobert and Mitchell. Gobert isn’t great offensively and Mitchell is downright bad defensively and their own personal limitations are affecting how they play together. Gobert will be 30 this year, and many, myself included, believe Mitchell isn’t a complete enough player to be a franchise guy.
Moving on from both does make sense if you feel you’ve gotten as much from them as possible.
In that event, Conley could get bought out and in which case, I would fully welcome him to Cleveland on a one-year deal.
That’s the only way I’m fine with Conley coming into Cleveland. If the Cavs make a trade for him and give up valuable assets for him, then the team is taking a massive step back currently and even more so in the future.