Cleveland Cavaliers: Why Signing Mirza Teletovic Makes Sense for the Cavs
Unless you follow international basketball, you probably have no idea who Mirza Teletovic is.
Allow me to fill you in.
Teletovic is a 26-year-old forward for the Caja Laboral Vitoria in Spain. The 6'9", 240-pounder has enough size to bang in the post and the mobility to go out on the perimeter.
His 21.7 points per game made him the top scorer in the Euroleague this season. He also led the league in made three-pointers—shooting them at an excellent rate of 43.1 percent—and was second in fouls drawn.
While teams will be prepared to offer eight-figure-per-year contracts to Milwaukee Bucks' unrestricted free agent Ersan Ilyasova, Teletovic is a much cheaper option and brings similar attributes to the table.
This would be considered a great move for the Cavs to pull the trigger on only if he comes at the right price.
The last thing they want to do is get in a bidding war with the Nets for his services. If the negotiations approach any number more than roughly five million per year, they should immediately drop out of the running and search for other options.
General manager Chris Grant and company are all about smart and savvy moves. They don't want to potentially ruin their future flexibility by signing an unproven player.
But if everything works out perfectly and he can be had for a reasonable deal, signing the Bosnian sensation makes perfect sense.
First, he would be able to fill the void left by Antawn Jamison at the stretch-four position. By all accounts, Teletovic appears to be the better shooter of the two, and while he is not known to be a very good defender, it's hard to imagine that he is any worse than the North Carolina product.
His shot from beyond the arc is also something that the franchise has been looking for since the LeBron era. Pairing him next to a point guard of Kyrie Irving's caliber should be a match made in heaven. The former No. 1 pick would finally have someone capable of knocking down deep shots to feed off his penetration.
Finally, the Cavs are lacking a scoring big, as the team's current big men—Tristan Thompson and Anderson Varejão—are far from potent offensive threats. In fact, the only true scorer on the roster at this point is Irving, who could desperately use someone like Teletovic to take some of the load off his shoulders.
Players are able to officially sign with a team on July 1. Stay tuned to see how this situation unfolds.
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