Former NBA Executive Defends Cavs in Patrick McCaw Controversy

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The controversy that’s erupted over the Cleveland Cavaliers’ waiving of Patrick McCaw after having signed him just one week earlier has them potentially facing penalties for the release.

However, one former NBA executive believes that the Cavs were within their rights to make the loudly criticized move.

Bobby Marks previously served in the front office of the Brooklyn Nets and now works for ESPN. Being well-versed in the rules related to NBA transactions gives him a background that allows for a unique perspective to look at the deal.

Adding to his defense of the move, Marks also offered his opinion about McCaw’s current playing capability.

In connection with the release of McCaw, the Cavaliers signed point guard Cameron Payne. Sam Amico of offered a reason why the Cavs made the abrupt move:

“Why did the Cavs cut McCaw so quickly? Because they quickly found McCaw didn’t fill a need (they already have a glut of wings on the roster) and Payne did. Payne was waived by the Chicago Bulls on Friday — several days after McCaw was signed. So the Cavs may not have bothered with McCaw had they known a young point guard would be available.”

Amico also provided the Cavaliers’ likely defense during the NBA investigation:

“Now, the Cavs are going to maintain in all of this that they signed McCaw with the chance to audition him. In order to do that, they needed to give him the contract they delivered (two years, $6 million). At the time, the Warriors held McCaw’s rights as a restricted free agent.

“The Cavs also needed to protect themselves with an ‘out.’ In this case, the contract was set up so that if McCaw was waived by Monday, the Cavs didn’t owe him another dime.”

In the midst of the huge blowup surrounding a third-year player who averaged 4.0 points per game during his time with the Golden State Warriors, the 8-33 Cavaliers have more immediate concerns. That involves the start of a six-game, 11-day road trip that begins Wednesday night in New Orleans.

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Brad Sullivan is a lead writer for Cavaliers Nation. He has spent much of life in the Cleveland, Ohio area, and has remained a Cavalier fan from their 1970 beginnings through the return of LeBron James. While that fandom was sorely tested during the Reign of Error known simply by one word, Stepien, that overall historical perspective will be part of his writing for Cavaliers Nation in the months ahead.