Less than a week from now, the Cleveland Cavaliers will take part in the 2015 NBA Draft. While currently holding the #24 overall selection in that process, the team could be looking to potentially package that selection with veteran center Brendan Haywood.
Brian Windhorst of ESPN.com has reported that the combination of a first-round pick and the unique nature of Haywood’s contract could entice a team to make a deal. In exchange, the Cavaliers are seeking a guard to either back up Kyrie Irving or play next to him in the backcourt, given Irving’s precarious health and the free agency status of three of the current guards.
Ordinarily, trading Haywood would garner virtually nothing in return, given his minimal contributions to the Cavs during the year. However, his non-guaranteed contract for next season is set to pay him $10.5 million, but if he’s waived before August 2, a team could reduce its payroll or use it during a potential free agency signing.
If the deal is completed, it wouldn’t be official until after the draft takes place. That’s due to the fact that Cleveland has already traded their first-round pick next year as part of the Kevin Love deal. Minnesota subsequently dealt that choice to Philadelphia.
Given how low in the first round the Cavaliers are selecting, Windhorst also noted that they may end up going in a different direction by offering the rights to Russian center Sasha Kaun. The 30-year-old has played the last seven years for CSKA, but gave hints back in March that he was open to playing in the NBA.
The NBA Draft begins on Thursday, June 25 beginning at 7 p.m., and will be televised by ESPN.