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With a chance to play for coach Paul Silas again, Robert "Tractor" Traylor returned to the Cleveland Cavaliers on Thursday.
The massive forward, who previously played with the Cavaliers in 2000-01, will get the club's million dollar exception -- a contract worth approximately $1.6 million. Although Traylor is more than doubling the $750,000 salary he got in New Orleans last season, the Cavaliers say money isn't all that lured him back.
The former first-round draft pick wanted to reunite with Silas, who coached him for two seasons with the Hornets.
"We think Robert can play a role in our front court," Cavaliers general manager Jim Paxson said. "He is a veteran and solid defender with five seasons of playoff experience whose physical presence will help us."
For the Hornets last season, Traylor came off the bench and averaged 5.1 points and 3.7 rebounds in 71 games. During his previous stint with the Cavaliers, Traylor averaged 5.7 points and 4.3 rebounds in 70 games before Cleveland traded him after the 2001 season to Philadelphia.
He was the No. 6 overall pick in 1998, selected by Dallas, which traded him to Milwaukee in a multiplayer swap that included center Dirk Nowitzki.
Meanwhile, the Cavaliers are also close to signing rookie forward Anderson Varejao.
The 6-10 Brazilian, taken with the No. 30 overall pick in June's draft by the Magic, was acquired by Cleveland in the deal for Gooden. He played last season in Europe, and the Cavaliers have to buy out his contract from Barcelona FC before they can sign him.