One of these roster cut candidates could fill Cavs last spot

Khem Birch and Scottie Barnes, Toronto Raptors. Photo by Cole Burston/Getty Images
Khem Birch and Scottie Barnes, Toronto Raptors. Photo by Cole Burston/Getty Images /
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Cleveland Cavaliers
Jeremiah Robinson-Earl, Oklahoma City Thunder. Photo by Ian Maule/Getty Images /

No. 2: Jeremiah Robinson-Earl, Oklahoma City Thunder

The Oklahoma City Thunder are the other team that has been dealing with an overstuffed roster all offseason after using their cap space and exceptions to pull off multiple trades for draft capital. Perhaps this team will finally go hunting for veteran upgrades in free agency themselves next summer, but for one last year, they’re still in asset accumulation mode as they give their young core room to grow.

They have shaved off players like Usman Garuba and TyTy Washington, who have caught on as two-way players elsewhere. Now they need to cut free another three contracts by the start of the season. Setting aside their core players and assuming that they want to keep Davis Bertans as a large contract for matching salary, there are probably six cut candidates for those three spots: Tre Mann, Aaron Wiggins, Aleksej Pokusevski, Jack White, Victor Oladipo and Jeremiah Robinson-Earl.

A number of those players would be theoretically interesting for the Cavaliers, but the one they should probably be most interested in would be Jeremiah Robinson-Earl. The 6’9″ big man was the 32nd pick in the 2021 NBA Draft and has been a solid rotation player for the Thunder over the past two seasons.

He may get pushed out due to the roster crunch as the Thunder look to higher-upside players in the frontcourt, making him the perfect candidate for the Cavaliers’ final spot. Robinson-Earl is strong and has a low center of gravity, making him an option to defend larger centers playing alongside Evan Mobley. “JRE” needs to improve his 3-point accuracy, but he has a good release and shoots well at the free-throw line, so he should be a reasonable stretch-4 option.

It’s not unreasonable that Robinson-Earl could fill a role similar to the one Grant Williams filled on the Boston Celtics over the past couple of seasons, and that’s a role the Cavs should be excited to add to their options.