It looks like the Cleveland Cavaliers, of LeBron James, Kyrie Irving, and Kevin Love fame, might want to add a twin brother to their mix. According to Sam Amico of Fox Sports Ohio’s notebook, the Cavaliers have “interest” in trading for injured Nets center Brook Lopez, and/or Brook’s twin brother Robin, currently on the Portland Trail Blazers.
Amico adds that a deal seems “unlikely” due to salary constraints, which is more true for the Brook(lyn) brother, who’s owed $15.7 million this season, plus a player option for next year. The Cavaliers would be hard-pressed to find a deal that doesn’t include two blue-chip backups in guard Dion Waiters and forward Tristan Thompson, both recent no. 4 overall NBA draft picks.
Repeat: there’s no way for the Cavaliers to do this unless they part with one of their own “Big 3” (not happening) or give up on both of their next guys in line (also not happening). Such a deal would leave their bench barren, and a frontcourt of Kevin Love and Brook Lopez leaves, uh, much to be desired on the defensive end.
They’re also barred from trading Anderson Varejao, who recently signed a four-year extension with the Cavaliers until the offseason, due to a complicated clause in the collective bargaining agreement that prohibits teams from trading players for six months if they sign a contract extension longer than three years.
Robin’s a little easier to fit for them — he only makes $6.4 million — but it would still require the Cavaliers giving up at least one of the two aforementioned players, and it would similarly require the Trail Blazers, who lead the Northwest Division with a 22-6 record, to give up on a major cog in their starting lineup that’s helped them transform into a top-3 defense this season.
So while the Cavaliers are almost assuredly off the table, there’s bigger news to take from this: since Amico is based in Cleveland, this information likely didn’t leak out of the Nets organization, and it means there’s some market out there for Brook Lopez, who’s dealt with serious foot injuries for the past three seasons and is currently sitting out with a lower back strain. With the Nets looking to break up their “Big 3,” it could mean that there are a few teams vying for his services.
Fox Sports Ohio — Cavs Report: Team continues to eye moves for a big man