Blog Entry

Shaq to Cavs: Give it some time

Posted on: June 14, 2009 3:53 pm
 
ORLANDO, Fla. -- The Cavaliers are taking an aggressive posture as they head into the draft and free-agent period, so it was only a matter of time before the Shaquille O'Neal talks heated up again.

Several media outlets began reporting Sunday that the Cavs and Suns have reignited talks about sending Shaq to Cleveland to help LeBron James in his quest for a championship. There wasn't much to reignite in the first place; widely hyped discussions involving O'Neal at the trade deadline were never on the verge of producing a deal. An executive familiar with the situation told CBSSports.com Sunday that the situation hasn't evolved much since then, expressing surprise at the flurry of reports. 

But when you have two teams desperate to move assets -- Phoenix with Shaq's $20 million expiring contract, and Cleveland with Ben Wallace's $14 million expiring contract and Sasha Pavlovic's partially guaranteed deal -- smoke often gives way to fire. Throw in the fact that the Cavs are coming off a debilitating loss to Orlando in the conference finals and an embarrassing week that featured a false report about coach Mike Brown's future, and you can see why the time may be right to shift to focus to the team's pursuit of O'Neal.

The executive involved in the teams' dealings said he fully expects the O'Neal situation to move to the forefront once the clubs begin fully exploring their options in the draft and free agency, which begins next month. The Suns, coming off a 46-win, non-playoff season, are highly motivated to move O'Neal in a bid to avoid paying luxury tax. Acquiring Wallace and Pavlovic, whose $4.9 million contract is only guaranteed for $1.5 million next season, would save Phoenix as much as $10 million, including luxury tax savings.

The Cavs view Pavlovic's partial guarantee and several players on minimum deals as a built-in trade exception they can use to improve the roster and give LeBron the big man he needs to compete for a championship at the highest level. A person familiar with the Cavs' thinking said the team is open to any and all possibilities and plans to take an aggressive approach in retooling a roster that won a league-best 66 games but failed to reach the NBA Finals.

A wild card in the Shaq talks is Wallace, who stated after the playoff loss to the Magic that he was seriously considering retirement. Cavs management has yet to speak directly with Wallace about his intentions, and as of now the club doesn't expect him to walk away from the $14 million left on his deal. If Wallace reiterated his desire to retire, it would spur buyout talks that would free up cap space immediately. Short of that, Wallace would get no money and the $14 million he is owed would come off the Cavs' books.

The idea of Shaq in Cleveland as a running mate for LeBron would present endless storylines and the delicious possibility of Kobe Bryant -- if he returns to the Lakers -- meeting his former and current nemeses in next year's Finals. The marketing people would have a field day adding a Shaq puppet to the popular Kobe & LeBron commercials. Bryant would be presented with the challenge of pursuing his fifth championship against the player he won with -- and feuded with -- in L.A. and the player who is trying to claim Bryant's title as the best player in the game.


It almost sounds too good to be true, except that it's not. Just give it some time.






Comments

Since: Apr 29, 2007
Posted on: June 14, 2009 7:18 pm
 

Shaq to Cavs: Give it some time

You are an idiot, you obviously don't live in or near Cleveland, so don't go saying stupid crap like this.  Those of us that do live in the area take offense to stupid comments like yours. 



Since: Feb 22, 2008
Posted on: June 14, 2009 7:18 pm
 

Shaq potential Cleveland nicknames.............

"the Big STEER" and the Cavs........

or maybe, Shaq be nimble, Shaq be QUICKEN!

You guys must have some great names out there!!!

Bart



Since: Jan 11, 2007
Posted on: June 14, 2009 7:13 pm
 

Shaq to Cavs: Give it some time

Actually Sman if Lebron wins with a 37 year old Shaq more credit would go to Lebron than Kobe who had him in his prime. Duh.



Since: Nov 29, 2008
Posted on: June 14, 2009 7:07 pm
 

Shaq to Cavs: Give it some time

but even the great teams of the past like the Lakers (Shaq, Kobe, Glen Rice), Bulls (Jordan, Pippen, Kukoc), Celtics (Garnet, Piece, Allen), and the more you look at championship teams, the more you'll see that most teams had three legitimate threats.Don't forget Duncan, Parker, and Ginobli or maybe even Billups, Hamilton, and Rasheed makes the list teams with three legitimate threats. Also, who was the third legitimate threat after Wade and Shaq in '06? 



Since: May 8, 2007
Posted on: June 14, 2009 7:03 pm
 

Shaq to Cavs: Give it some time

The Cavaliers would have to get rid of Wallace in order for this to work. They already have two centers past their prime so they would have to move one, but why would the Suns want Ben Wallace, or Big Z? What is he going to bring to their team that Shaq doesn't? I think Shaq is past his prime, but he actually played quite well last year. In my opinion he has more gas left in the tank than Big Z or Wallace, so why would the Suns move him to Cleveland? Sure, it would be a great media trade, but it would make zero sense for Steve Kerr and the Suns, and the window of opportunity is almost closed in Phoenix. I would be surprised if there wasn't another team willing to offer a better package than what the Cavs will send for Shaq.

I hope the Cavs try to add another piece this year though. Their regular season was astounding, but it was clear against Orlando that they need another scorer. Mo Williams is a solid piece, but even the great teams of the past like the Lakers (Shaq, Kobe, Glen Rice), Bulls (Jordan, Pippen, Kukoc), Celtics (Garnet, Piece, Allen), and the more you look at championship teams, the more you'll see that most teams had three legitimate threats. I don't see anyone as a scary offensive threat in their lineup outside of Lebron, Williams (who was silent in the conference finals). I'm willing to bet that a player like Chris Bosh would be very interested in going to Cleveland after his contract expires. He has one more year in Toronto, and you can bet that Colangelo is going to want to get something for Bosh before he leaves the Raptors to free agency. I have a funny feeling he'll end up in Cleveland if the Cavs can find the money. Just a thought, but my real point is the Cavs need one more guy, and it wouldn't hurt if that guy was a dominant post player. Should be an entertaining off season, it'll be interesting to see how teams handle the plethora of big name free agents over the next two years.



Since: Jan 21, 2008
Posted on: June 14, 2009 6:59 pm
 

Shaq to Cavs: Give it some time

I have lived in Cleveland since 1980 and this dude is right, its terrible. People only go to Tribe games when they are decent, nobody cared about the Cavs until they got Lebron. Ill never forget the 95' Indians and how everyone jumped on the bandwagon and started painting Chief Wahoo on thier garages when in the last year or two of the old Municipal Stadium, they were lucky to draw 1,000 fans..The only team people care about full time are the Browns, and look how thats working out. Cleveland finished dead last in a poll judging the intelligence of the fans from pro markets to give you and idea of the superficiality of thier loyalty...People here are more pumped about the bar specials during playoff games than the actual outcome of the contests. I have been to every state in the union, and this place is dreary, cold, uninspiring, and downright sad. If it wasnt for family that I take care of here, this would be the last place in America that I would want to live. Thank god I'm from Philly and have a decent set of teams to root for. This city gets what it puts in to it...NOTHING....From now till the end of time...



Since: Dec 10, 2006
Posted on: June 14, 2009 6:56 pm
 

Shaq to Cavs: Give it some time

I really don't get this trade talk. Shaq did not cut it in Phoenix and now the Cavs are going to try to win with him? Nonsense! He will plug up the middle and slow the team down. The Cavs problems are not at the 5- they are at the 4. They need an AMARE or Bosh to become a real threat to win it all. Their centre is not flashy but he gets the job done.

If Cavs make this trade, they will be making the same mistake the Suns did- trying to build a winner the lazy way: by depending on an aging star. The champions of the future will win by identifying and signing the stars of the future.

An upgrade at the 4 and the Cavs are good enough to contend.



Since: May 16, 2009
Posted on: June 14, 2009 6:54 pm
 

Shaq to Cavs: Give it some time

Hey asshole..Lorain & Medina is over a 30min drive from the furthest point in Cleveland. Youngstown & Lordstown are over an hour drive from the same distance. Those aren't Cleveland suburbs or even close to being one. You have a screen name with bin ladin in it then dare to call us the Sunni Triangle? You obviously don't live here and if you do it's in the worst f*cking neighborhood imaginable. This city is doing very well off of it's sports teams, museums, bars, nightclubs & restaurants. Not to mention a play district that almost matches New Yorks. If you don't like it here, by all means, keep your stupid ass outta here. Get your facts straight before you type your ignorant bullsh*t on here.



Since: Nov 29, 2008
Posted on: June 14, 2009 6:38 pm
 

Shaq to Cavs: Give it some time

shaq is good and all, but he is not the same as before. i think wade use every last drip of gas out of Shaq in 06. Ever since then he just havn't been the same. thats why the heat did the trade and why the suns wanna trade him now. LeBron should look else where cause shaq is not the answer.
You were right about the first thing but you have to take last year into account. Shaq lead his team in scoring, rebounds, and blocks. Yeah his numbers were some of the lowest of his career but who cares. He lead the Suns and showed he still has a lot left in him. This guy can probably play until he's 39 or 40. I think he would give the Cavs a boost not only as a decent offensive and defensive threat but as another leader on the floor. Shaq knows what it takes to win a championship, part of why he has 4 of them. Just look back at the highlight from 2002 when after missed attempt after missed attempt to get the ball in the hole he slapped it out to Horry who shot the three to win the game. Shaq still has 2 solid years left in my opinion. I could be very wrong but I think he would do far more good than bad. He'd certainly, at least I think so, be a better option than Ilgauskas. 



Since: Jan 20, 2007
Posted on: June 14, 2009 5:50 pm
 

Shaq to Cavs: Give it some time

This is something now adays akin to Donld Trump donating all of his money to charity, but why don't we forget Shaq for a moment and toss the insane idea out there of Kobe and LeBron teaming up in Cleavland?

This is just a very far fetched idea mind you, but with LeBron and Kobe tandem there would be no chance to stop these guys.  Kobe is done at the end of the season, and Lebron if I am not mistaken would be free to the market summer 2010, so why not re-do Lebrons contract and figure out a way to bring these two superstars together for a long time. 

Again a very crazy idea, but worth a look more than Shaq, like so many have pointed out, what really impact could Shaq have over a younger equally talented power Center to help out.  The Cavs needed speed for defense against the Magic, they won't get that from Shaq


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