Cavs sign Tim Frazier to 10-day contract for point guard help

Tim Frazier, Orlando Magic. (Photo by Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports)
Tim Frazier, Orlando Magic. (Photo by Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports) /

With their injury luck of late, it doesn’t seem as if the Cleveland Cavaliers are coming out of the All-Star break.

All-Star Darius Garland has been dealing with lower back soreness for a while, and recently it was found that he has a bone bruise in his back. Garland missed Cleveland’s loss on Thursday at the Detroit Pistons in what was the club’s first game after the All-Star break, in which Cleveland hosted.

From there, the team announced on Thursday that Caris LeVert sprained his right foot, and is expected to miss 1-2 weeks. With LeVert’s injury issues over the course of his career, that was rough to hear too, and Garland is not going to be in for Cleveland on Saturday against the Washington Wizards, either.

Along with those two, the Cavs in a team release on Friday stated that Rajon Rondo has a right big toe sprain, and is expected to miss 2 weeks. Rondo is up there already and is in his 16th season, so injuries are foreseeable, objectively.

So with those injuries in mind, the team seemed likely to make a move for the short term for depth, and they did so on Friday evening. That’s also with Kevin Pangos being waived last weekend and the team having an open roster spot.

Shams Charania of The Athletic and Stadium first reported how Tim Frazier was planning to sign with the Cavaliers via 10-day deal, and right thereafter, Chris Fedor of reported how that ultimately occurred.

This Frazier signing is essentially for lead guard help for a bit for the Cavs.

Frazier was last on two 10-day hardship exception deals with the Orlando Magic earlier this season when COVID-19/omicron variant issues were rampant leaguewide, and he appeared in 10 games in that stretch, with three starts in that time. With the Magic in that stint, he had 3.7 points and 3.3 assists in 20.0 minutes per game.

Last season, he had two 10-day stints with the Memphis Grizzlies, with the second coming for insurance, and was given a rest-of-season deal from there for that.

Prior to that, Frazier has fit the definition of journeyman, having played first with the Philadelphia 76ers for a brief time in 2014-15, and he’s since appeared with the Portland Trail Blazers, New Orleans Pelicans (in two stints), Wizards, Milwaukee Bucks and then the Detroit Pistons for 27 games in 2019-20.

Frazier could theoretically help the Cavaliers get into their offense some in reserve minutes in games Garland and/or LeVert are not able to go with the Rondo injury, and that’s to put less on two-way guy Brandon Goodwin‘s plate.

Granted, it’s tough to expect all that much from the 31-year-old Frazier, who has bounced around in his career where he’s filled in in rotational stretches. In 287 career games in the regular season, he’s had 4.9 points and 4.0 assists in 17.7 minutes per contest, with him having 84 starts. Largely given the nature of him bouncing around so often, he’s been streaky from three, hitting 32.3 percent from there in his NBA career, and the 6-foot Frazier has had an effective field goal shooting clip of 45.1 percent.

In reserve stretches, Frazier can help Cleveland as a ball-mover, to some degree, and has shown some ability to get hot at times in the shooting sense. However, at this juncture, the Cavs shouldn’t be expecting a whole lot from him in his stretches out there, and I’m not even touching the defensive end.

This is a 10-day signing for some quick, realistically emergency-type depth, and he’ll feasibly receive some run behind Goodwin in perhaps more potential Garland-less games. I wouldn’t anticipate Frazier getting spot starts or anything, though, as Goodwin has helped the Cavaliers on a number of occasions this season, and is a capable driver and can penetrate, and create for himself, to some degree.

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We’ll have to see if Frazier eventually receives a second 10-day from here.