The Cleveland LeBrons were upset by the Orlando Magic in the Conference Finals a little over a week ago. Their lack of a supporting cast, mainly any inside presence, was exposed by the Orlando Magic time and time again in the series.
With the summer of LeBron only a year away now, the Cavs realize this is their last year to win before LeBron bolts to New York. NBA Executive of the Year Danny Ferry needs to prove his title this offseason and get LeBron some help.
Ferry will need to get creative, as the free agent class isn’t stacked and they don’t have many valuable trade assets. With that being said, I’m going to play G.M. and look at some of the options the Cavs could explore this summer.
The Cavs desperately need a big man and there is none bigger than Shaq.
The Diesel missed the playoffs this year and surely wants another shot at a title, especially since Kobe got one this year.
Shaq showed last year that he wasn’t finished and played good ball and Phoenix might be looking to the future with Steve Nash set to be a free agent in 2010.
LeBron and Shaq would be a great combo and finally give the Cavs a legit low-post scorer. Imagine a Cavs Lakers finals next year with LeBron vs. Kobe and Shaq vs. Kobe. The NBA would have a field day with that and it would make for more puppet commercials.
The Hornets already tried to deal Chandler at the trade deadline and if not for a failed physical, he would be in Oklahoma City right now.
Chandler should be fully healthy by training camp and the Hornets still want to cut salary. Chandler would give them someone inside who could bang with Dwight Howard and be a force on the defensive end.
Ben Wallace’s expiring $14 million contract could be very attractive to the Hornets.
With the Clippers planning on selecting Blake Griffin with the No.1 pick in the draft, it creates a logjam at power forward.
Randolph has a very big contract but the Cavs might be willing to take it on to appease LeBron. Randolph is still a double-double machine and is only 27-years-old.
His defense is below average to say the least but the Cavs are desperate for some help.
Ariza enjoyed a breakout playoffs and should cash in the offseason.
Ariza is only 24-years-old and incredibly athletic. He is a very long player who teams always need to account for, especially on the defensive end. An energy player who could really benefit a team in need of a new look. He could start or come off the bench for the Cavs and would likely cost them their mid-level exception.
Wallace is turning 34 and has lost a step, but he is still the best unrestricted free agent big man on the market.
Wallace can guard the post and give them a decent option down low. Wallace and Zydrunas Ilgauskas on the court at the same time might be a problem for the Cavs due to their tendency to hang on the perimeter.
Wallace will likely cost the Cavs their mid-level exception too, but it would be a short deal, probably two years.