With Luol Deng presumably gone in free agency, the Cleveland Cavaliers have their eyes on two of the best up-and-coming free agents small forwards on the markets in hope to add them to a team that’s desperate to turn the corner: Gordon Hayward and Chandler Parsons.
It might not be Carmelo to the Heat but hearing the Cavs are interested in Gordon Heyward & Chandler Parsons.
— Probasketballdraft (@Probballdraft) June 12, 2014
With Paul Millsap and Al Jefferson gone, Gordon Hayward came into the season as the number one scoring option for the first time of his career and it showed in the numbers. Drawing other teams best defender night in and night out, Hayward averaged a career-high 16.2 points on 41 percent shooting (30 percent from three), 5.1 rebounds, and 5.2 assists per game while sporting a PER of 16.2.
Opposite of Hayward, Chandler Parson spent his 2013-14 season playing the third wheel on a Houston Rockets team whose season capped out in the first round of the playoffs. Starting in 74 games, Parsons averaged 16.6 points on 47 percent shooting (37 percent from three), 5.5 rebounds, and 4.0 assists per game along with a 15.9 PER.
Each player would be the perfect fit alongside Kyrie Irving and company. They’re versatile, don’t need the ball in their hands to operate successfully, and are both solid playmakers for their position. But one thing stands in the way of a possible marriage between Cleveland and Hayward or Parsons… restricted free agency. If Houston or Utah chooses to match what will likely be a deal worth ~40 million, they have the ability to do so, leaving Cleveland to look elsewhere for a forward.
The Cavs interest in these two make me wonder where their minds are in regards to the draft. With Parsons or Hayward, the need for Andrew Wiggins or Jabari Parkers becomes obsolete, leaving Dante Exum and Joel Embiid as the only two realistic options for the number one pick. The talent disparity between Exum and Embiid (also redundancy because of Kyrie) leaves Joel as the last-man standing for Cleveland at number one which makes sense because it adds balance to an offense that hasn’t been keen on finding fits rather than collection talent.
Take this rumor for what it is.. a rumor. The Cavaliers are known for their smokescreens and this supposed interest could be their way to contain their want for Andrew Wiggins.