At the end of a very weird day of free agency that saw Josh Smith move to Detroit and Carl Landry go back to Sacramento, the Cavaliers have made a splash of their own, bringing former Hornets and Warriors point guard Jarrett Jack to Cleveland. First reported by Warriors beat writer Marcus Thompson, Jack has agreed to terms with the Cavs on a 4-year deal worth $25 million, or for about $6.5 million per season.
Jack fills the large hole at backup point guard for the Cavaliers, a position that was manned by Jeremy Pargo and Shaun Livingston last season. Jack is a massive upgrade over these players, obviously. Jack will likely be the first player off the bench for the Cavs next season, who, combined with the signing of Earl Clark and drafting of Anthony Bennett, appear to want to transition into a wide-open running offense. Jack is a good player to do this, piloting a Golden State offense that was fourth in the league in pace last season.
Jack’s deal includes a team option for the final year, allowing the Cavaliers to maintain some flexibility for the future. And while the price tag seems steep, it is lower than the $8 million a year Jack was reported to be requesting, and is in the range for a player of his caliber.
Jack was in the running for Sixth Man of the Year last year, coming off the bench for the Warriors in 75 contests and starting another four. He averaged 13 points, 3 rebounds, and 6 assists per game, and shot 45.2% from the field, 40.4% from three, and 84.3% from three. Jack is a point guard, first and foremost, but with his shooting ability and size, he can play off the ball as well. His shot selection can sometimes leave a lot to be desired, but he’ll add some nice wrinkles to the Cavs offense as a distributor and decent rebounder for a guard. I expect him to be coming off the bench for the Cavs, and probably to be involved in some small-ball lineups with Kyrie Irving and Dion Waiters at small forward, as well as lineups with Kyrie Irving off the ball. Jack also is great insurance if Kyrie Irving gets injured, which was a big problem last season, as Shaun Livingston was simply overmatched by opponents in the starting role when Irving hurt his shoulder. This is why Golden State traded for him last year to protect against Stephen Curry missing time with his ankle issues, and will likely do the same for the Cavs.
This signing leaves the Cavs with roughly $8 million left in cap space. The Cavs will likely not use much of that remaining money, and if they do, I’d expect the money to go to a rim-protecting big.
What does everyone think of the signing? Leave a comment below with your thoughts, and welcome Jarrett Jack to Cleveland!