Why Channing Frye is an important signing

BOSTON, MA - MAY 17: Channing Frye
BOSTON, MA - MAY 17: Channing Frye /

Channing Frye is back with the Cleveland Cavaliers and that’s actually tremendous for the Wine and Gold.

According to The Vertical’s Shams Chanaria 6-foot-11 forward-center Channing Frye recently signed with the Cleveland Cavaliers for the veteran’s minimum, a one-year 2.4 million dollar deal.

Frye is back with Cleveland after the Cavaliers traded him the day of the 2017 trade deadline (he was traded — along with Isaiah Thomas and a first round pick — for Larry Nance Jr. and Jordan Clarkson).

The floor-stretching sharpshooter was previously with the Cavaliers from 2016-2018, the most important stretch of history for the franchise thanks to the Cavs’ Finals runs with LeBron James.

He and fellow veteran Richard Jefferson provided both on court help as well as off court humor. He did this in the form of his popular podcast “Road Trippin’.”

Along with making jokes about a commercial found in an in flight magazine they named “Lil Kev” after the models resemblance to Cavaliers star Kevin Love.

Frye’s on-court production primarily comes in the form of three-pointers. He shot 40% per game on 2.5 attempts in 2016-2017 for the Cavaliers, making him a great pick-and-pop option (or spot-up shooter) on the court that draws opposing big men out of the paint.

This signing could mean two things for the Cavaliers:

(1) It could mean that the Cavaliers are trying to be a playoff team. Frye, although a 35-year-old with limited athleticism, can still offer minutes for a playoff contender.

He had shown in his previous stint as a Cavalier that he has the skills to add to a playoff team. He offers this team another shooter and mismatch to throw at teams. However, he is not just any shooter. He is a shooter who has played with this team previously and understands the systems as well as how to mesh with the other players on this team.

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(2) Ironically, with his veteran status and locker room intangibles, Frye’s signing could also be a sign that the Cavaliers are planning on tanking to get a higher draft pick.

History has shown during rebuilds that relying solely young talent only is not a great strategy. A good team needs a mix of young players and veteran presences to teach them the ways of the NBA.

Frye would be an excellent mentor for our young players to learn from. He has been in many different situations in the NBA and would be able to teach our rookies how to work and act during those situations.

He has also shown that he is an excellent player for team morale. During the NBA Finals runs he offered a way out of the stress of constantly competing with his humor and demeanor. He could also offer this release in a team that could lose many games during their rebuild.

Related Story: Controlled tanking the best option for Cavs

Although Frye’s signing doesn’t necessarily show the direction of the Cavaliers, he’ll help the team.