The Cleveland Cavaliers, along with the Dallas Mavericks, Los Angeles Lakers and Miami Heat, are one of the handful of teams said to be pursing Washington Wizards free agent Trevor Ariza, according to Ken Berger of CBS Sports:
The Mavs, Cavs, Lakers and Heat are pursuing Wizards free agent Trevor Ariza, league sources say. Ariza seeking deal starting at $9-$11m.
— Ken Berger (@KBergCBS) July 7, 2014
Although this doesn’t come as much of a surprise because the Cavaliers are still looking for a formidable fit at the small forward position, Ariza would most likely be a fallback plan for the Cavs if they can’t land a big free agent like LeBron James this week. Ariza was an important cog in the Wizards’ playoff rotation this past season, averaging 13.6 points, 8.9 rebounds and 1.5 steals over 11 postseason games, while shooting 48.1 percent from the field, 44.6 percent from three and 77.8 percent from the free throw line. During the regular season Ariza averaged 14.4 points, 6.2 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 1.6 steals over 77 games, while shooting 45.6 percent from the field, 40.7 percent from three and 77.2 percent from the free throw line.
When the offseason began, Ariza was — and still is — a player on many Cavalier fans’ radar, along with shooting guard Gordon Hayward of the Utah Jazz and power forward Channing Frye of the Phoenix Suns. Ariza would provide the consistent perimeter shooting and standout defense at the three that Cleveland has been searching for over the past four seasons.