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Unclebuck
07-10-2004, 12:46 PM
There are so many rumors flying around. Here is antoher one involving the Cavs and Pacers re-starting the trade talk


Cavaliers searching for a Plan B


Keeping Boozer would mean big roster moves, but losing forward would leave a big hole to fill

By Brian Windhorst

Beacon Journal staff writer


Day 1 A.B. -- After Boozer -- was a silent one at Gund Arena.

Cavaliers general manager Jim Paxson, who returned to Cleveland on an overnight flight from a family funeral in Portland, Ore., and team owner Gordon Gund have been in discussions on how to respond to the shocking news that Carlos Boozer had agreed to an offer sheet with the Utah Jazz, believed to be worth $68 million over six years.

At this juncture, the team has two very clear options: making drastic roster moves to free enough salary-cap space to match the offer sheet by July 29 or simply moving on without Boozer.

The Cavaliers won't know exactly what they'll have to do to retain Boozer until July 14, when the exact salary-cap number is revealed, Boozer officially signs the offer sheet and the details of the contract become available. Currently, the Cavaliers owe the 11 players on their roster $43.2 million next season. The salary cap will likely be between $44-$46 million.

According to sources, the first year of Boozer's contract could be worth in excess of $10 million. The only way the Cavaliers could realistically match that offer is to trade center Zydrunas Ilgauskas, who is slated to make $14.6 million in the final year of his contract, and get only a future draft pick in return.

If the team doesn't match, which appears to be the more likely option at this point, the Cavaliers will have roughly $6.7 million to spend on free agents to attempt to replace Boozer. Of that, $5 million is in the mid-level exception and $1.6 million is in what is called the million-dollar exception. There is also the option of making a trade.

The Cavaliers have been in discussions to enter into a sign-and-trade deal with Eric Williams and might try to work a deal for a power forward.

``We're in serious discussions with a lot of teams and some of them may turn into sign-and-trade chances and some of them may not,'' said Mark Bartelstein, Williams agent. ``Eric enjoyed his time in Cleveland and liked playing for Paul Silas and he'd also certainly like to return.''

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There is also a chance Paxson might try to restart trade talks with the Indiana Pacers. Leading up to last month's draft, the Pacers were in discussions with several teams with the interest in trading forward Al Harrington for a chance to draft Luke Jackson. It is believed Pacers president Larry Bird covets Jackson, and Pacers coach Rick Carlisle has a strained relationship with Harrington, who wants to be a starter. It is possible the Cavaliers might now reconsider.


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The only power forward near Boozer's quality on the free-agent market right now is the New Jersey Nets' Kenyon Martin, but he is going to demand a deal even larger than Boozer's, totally ruling him out -- which means the Cavaliers will have to go bargain shopping to find another starter.

One player they already have interest in is Golden State Warriors free-agent forward Brian Cardinal, who is also represented by Bartelstein. The Cavaliers have also inquired about Bartelstein client Corie Blount.

Other starter-quality power forwards include the Washington Wizards' Etan Thomas and the Memphis Grizzlies' Stromile Swift. But both are restricted free agents, and their teams are likely to match any offer the Cavaliers can make.

Another option is Lee Nailon, who finished last season with the Cavaliers after two successful 10-day contracts. Nailon has been a successful spot starter during his career and would provide scoring punch off the bench. He's not a replacement for Boozer, but could help replace his scoring in the front court.

``Lee would like to return to Cleveland if we can work things out,'' said Nailon's agent, Larry Fox. ``We have some other interest, but Lee has a great relationship with Coach Silas.''

Will Galen
07-10-2004, 12:59 PM
A Beacon Journal staff writer knows that Carlisle and Harrington have a strained relationship?


HAW HAWHAWHAWHAW!

Kegboy
07-10-2004, 02:00 PM
I really wish we would do this instead of sign Stephen. I'd rather trade Al for a shooter on a rookie contract that can grow into Reggie's successor, instead of spending a ton of money on a shooting guard that only shoots 33% from 3. :shakehead:

But then, there was talk Cleveland cause they already signed Luke. What's the final word on that?

Arcadian
07-10-2004, 02:09 PM
The way it reads to me is the author is just assuming that because Al asked to be traded he has a strained relationship with Rick. It is said so matter of factly like it is common knowledge.

Peck
07-10-2004, 04:02 PM
Actually it would be better for the Pacers to have the Cavs. let Boozer walk away.

However, if I was the Cavs. I would do everything short of losing James to keep Carlos Boozer.

Between Boozer & James you have the combo to build a franchise on for years & years & years. They will not be able to replace Carlos Boozer & it will take Cleveland back from a team I was very very worried about to a team who has a star guard & some other nice talent but not a team I fear in the playoffs.

So for the Pacers, fly Carlos fly.

:idea: Hey, I wonder if there is any way we could do a sign & trade with the Cavs. where we end up with Boozer.

Will Galen
07-11-2004, 12:09 AM
:idea: Hey, I wonder if there is any way we could do a sign & trade with the Cavs. where we end up with Boozer.

Now that's an interesting thought!

I wonder if we could do a three way with Atlanta and Cleveland. Only Boozer would end up in Atlanta, Al would go to Cleveland and we would end up with Jackson and what? Hmmm . . .

sixthman
07-11-2004, 12:20 AM
It's Stephen Jackson's defense, along with the offense, that makes him heads and tales better than anyone the Cavs would have offered us.