The Cleveland Cavaliers appear to be moving on from the spectacle that is the Tristan Thompson drama. While the NBA team has not provided any official announcement regarding the future of LeBron James' buddy, the Cavaliers look to be making decisions that could ultimately lead to the departure of Tristan Thompson. With no progress on the re-signing of the Canadian player, fans and followers of the Cavaliers took notice of the fact that the NBA team has not been anxiously waiting for Thompson's decision. As of the past weeks, four new players have been added to the NBA team's roster.
Although the Cavaliers have never denied the fact that Tristan is an integral part of the team, another undeniable aspect is that acceding to his max contract demand will see them paying an inordinate amount of cash in luxury tax bills. With both these things in mind, the Cavaliers find themselves in a very difficult decision - that is, the team has to decide whether it would be worth it for them to give in Tristan's demand and suffer huge monetary losses or simply give him a qualifying offer and endure the potential wrath of LeBron James.
With no end in sight for Thompson's dilemma, the Cavaliers appear to have tabled the issue for now and pursued other players who could bolster the team's chances in the upcoming NBA season. Recent reports revealed that the Cavaliers just signed Sasha Kaun to a two-year deal with no team or contract option. At the moment, no information on the salary offered by the NBA team to the 6-foot-11 Russian center.
Meanwhile, the Cavaliers saw the return of JR Smith after the NBA star opted out of his contract with theteam earlier this year. Jared Cunningham was also recently added to the roster of players in the Cavaliers training camp. Cunningham is joined by Quinn Cook. Taking into consideration all the players the Cleveland Cavaliers added to its roster, the team now have a recorded 15 stars with guaranteed contracts.
According to Inquistr, this number now puts the Cleveland Cavaliers way above the salary cap and the NBA's luxury tax ceiling. This fact poses yet another roadblock for the Cavaliers to reach an agreement with Thompson. It remains to be seen whether the team will gamble their budget to please James or simply risk facing the possibility of seeing his departure from the Cavaliers next season.
As for the game plan of the Cavaliers this upcoming NBA season, Terry Pluto of Cleveland Plain Dealer shares that fans and followers of James should expect to see less of him in the hard wood. As seen in the previous NBA season, the Cavaliers opted to reduce the number of minutes that LeBron James played to reduce the risk of injuring the NBA star.
"One of the team's regular-season goals is to cut down the minutes for LeBron James," wrote Pluto. He added, "They did that in 2014-15, with his 36.1 average the lowest of his career. He also played 69 games, his fewest in an 82-game season."
The same strategy will be implemented in Kyrie Irving's playing minutes. Pluto points out that the re-entry of JR Smith and Iman Shumpert in the Cavaliers will guarantee that James and Kyrie Irving need not overwork themselves during the NBA seasons. In this manner, all stars will be well and healthy until the playoffs.