3 potential offseason targets for Cavaliers with ties to James Borrego

Can hiring James Borrego help the Cleveland Cavaliers recruit the perfect offseason additions?
Charlotte Hornets v Miami Heat
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Though nothing is official yet, James Borrego has reportedly emerged as the forerunner for the Cleveland Cavaliers' head coaching vacancy.

According to ESPN insider Brian Windhorst, Borrego has gained momentum in the search over the past few days as other candidates have reportedly moved on to other unnamed opportunities. Per Windhorst, the Cavs and Borrego are expected to meet early next week for another formal interview.

Since 2010, Borrego has served as both an assistant and head coach for a multitude of organizations, currently working as the associate head coach of the New Orleans Pelicans. His most recent head coaching position was leading the Charlotte Hornets from 2018-22. In his final year with the team, they recorded their first winning record under Borrego despite a young, inexperienced roster.

Borrego has never led a team to the playoffs as a head coach, which may harm his reputation to onlookers; however, he has never run a staff with expectations of the postseason, often working with rebuilding organizations. With the Pelicans last season, Borrego got a taste of the playoffs.

What Borrego brings to Cleveland

Per cleveland.com reporter Chris Fedor's Subtext, sources within the Pelicans organization raved about Borrego's basketball IQ, praising his offensive schemes and X's and O's. Others did note, though, that the Cavs would need to support Borrego with a strong staff to set a culture to avoid the mishaps that rocked his tenure with Charlotte. As Fedor noted, teams often look for a head coach with a different style when making changes. Now former head coach J.B. Bickerstaff was known for his defensive mind and cultural leadership, but he lacked the know-how for in-game adjustments or varied offensive schemes.

Borrego gives the Cavaliers a fresh start under a new offensive-minded leader. Under Bickerstaff, Cleveland's best season-long offensive rating only reached eighth in the NBA, dipping to twentieth in an earlier season. The Cavs often held a top-five defense, but their stagnant offense limited the impact and development of their young stars, seemingly pushing Evan Mobley's growth to the back burner. If Borrego is the choice, Cleveland will expect to see what the team can finally achieve with a flowing, reliable offensive approach.

Beyond on-court schemes, Borrego's experience and relationships with numerous organizations could help the Cavaliers' offseason efforts in the trade and free agent markets. These three players with ties to Borrego could catch Cleveland's eyes this summer.