The Cleveland Cavaliers could be close to bolstering their offensive production on the wing, and it would cost them none of their NBA Finals core to do so.
The Cavs are considering trading for Joe Johnson of the Brooklyn Nets, ESPN.com’s Brian Windhorst reports. In exchange, the Nets would receive center Brendan Haywood’s non-guaranteed contract and possibly injured big man Anderson Varejao, according to Windhorst.
Such a deal would be a coup for Brooklyn, which is looking to shed salaries after owner Mikhail Prokhorov’s spending sprees of the last few years. Haywood’s $10.5 million contract can be terminated with no penalty before Aug. 1, making him the ultimate trade chip. Haywood can be used in deals for salary-matching purposes and then waived at no cost by a team looking to cut payroll, as the Nets are.
Johnson is the second-highest paid player in the NBA, with $24.8 million due next season.
Varejao is a LeBron James favorite, but he missed Cleveland’s playoff run after tearing his Achilles in December and would be expendable if the Cavs are successful in their pursuit of veteran free-agent big man David West.
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