2 trade targets, 1 free agent alternative to P.J. Washington for Cavaliers

JaMychal Green, Golden State Warriors. (Photo by Kavin Mistry/Getty Images)
JaMychal Green, Golden State Warriors. (Photo by Kavin Mistry/Getty Images) /
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Outside of star trade demands and the surrounding drama, the NBA offseason news cycle has grown quiet. The Cleveland Cavaliers have seemingly made the most of their free-agent options, acquiring numerous 3-point shooters and building out their depth.

Reports circulated that the Cavs showed interest in Charlotte’s P.J. Washington as a sign-and-trade target, but discussions never got serious. Now, it appears that Washington is most likely to return to Charlotte on a qualifying offer in order to become an unrestricted free agent next summer.

This could suggest Cleveland’s offseason moves are over, but with only thirteen roster spots filled, they will have to make at least one more addition before their October 25 opening game versus the Brooklyn Nets.

Can the Cavaliers still add to their team?

How will the Cavs improve this late into the offseason? The free agent pool is increasingly empty, and most players left are probably waiting to see where Damian Lillard and James Harden end up before they sign a contract.

Washington is a 6-foot-7-inch forward with some experience as a small ball five. Almost all of Cleveland’s offseason moves prioritized outside shooting, but size is still an issue at the wing spot. Max Strus, while a dangerous shooter and worthwhile defender, stands at 6-foot 5-inches, making him undersized for the small forward position. Isaac Okoro is even shorter at 6-foot 4-inches, leaving the Cavs best to look at players who can resolve this issue in some way.

There are still some options in both free agency and trades that could improve the Cavaliers on opening night. A Washington sign-and-trade would have been costly by the nature of sign-and-trades alone, but the front office might find cheaper options elsewhere that could bring similar productivity.

First, the Cavaliers could look to buy low on a forward left in limbo on a team needing to downsize their roster.