Cavaliers: Grading 5 free agent wings from ‘no way’ to ‘yes please’

Kelly Oubre Jr., Charlotte Hornets. Photo by Justin Ford/Getty Images
Kelly Oubre Jr., Charlotte Hornets. Photo by Justin Ford/Getty Images /
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Cleveland Cavaliers
Bruce Brown Jr., Denver Nuggets. Photo by Chris Coduto/Getty Images /

Bruce Brown Jr. – I would, yeah

Bruce Brown Jr. is having an excellent season for the Denver Nuggets, a key cog on a team that is playing in the NBA Finals. Fully maximized on a team that needs his defense and playmaking and has the shooting to support him, Brown is in for a major payday this summer and the Nuggets will be hard-pressed to bring him back.

It could be that a team hands Brown more than the MLE and the Cavaliers are out of luck, but even with Brown’s strong season, he was unwanted as recently as a season ago and signed with the Nuggets for peanuts. If he is gettable at the MLE the Cavs should probably ink him to that deal.

As a defender Brown is elite, able to take on opposing guards but with really strong help instincts too, digging down for steals or bringing a hard double in the post. He rebounds much better than his size (6’4″) and has good length on defense. On offense he is a credible secondary playmaker, is a smart cutter and good finisher.

The question is his 3-point shot. He hit 40.4 percent two seasons ago in Brooklyn and 35.8 percent this past season, nearly tripling his volume. He isn’t a knockdown guy, but he reliably hits wide-open catch-and-shoot options, from both the corner and the elbow. He’s not Darius Garland, but he isn’t Isaac Okoro either. If the Cavaliers believe in his shooting, the rest of his game should be enough to bring him in.