Saturday, July 18, 2009

The Cavs have interest in signing Barnes, who Shaq is trying to get to sign with Cleveland

By Anthony Caruso III

The Cleveland Cavaliers are still in need of some more athletic swingman. The Cavs recently signed Anthony Parker to a two-year deal worth nearly $6 million dollars. They are looking to add one or two more swingman.

Matt Barnes continues to be mentioned as a potential player the Cavs have interest in. Barnes is a well-traveled journeymen and will be looking for his 7th NBA team since 2003 after starting out in the NBDL in 2002. New Cavs center Shaquille O'Neal is trying to get Barnes to sign with Cleveland. Both O'Neal and Barnes were in Phoenix last season.

Even though Barnes has bounced around from team-to-team, he saw his best season last year in Terry Porter/Alvin Gentry's offense. Barnes averaged a career-high 10.2 points last season. He also averaged 5.5 rebounds, 2.8 assists, 0.7 steals, and 0.3 blocks in 77 games. He's spent the past three seasons in up-tempo offenses with the Golden State Warriors and the Suns.

The Cavs still have the majority of their mid-level exception to spend on free agents. Parker's deal only took up some of their mid-level exception. They have nearly $4 million dollars left of their mid-level exception to spend on free agents.

With the signing of Barnes, it will give the Cavs another good three-pointer shooter. Last season, the Cavaliers, as a team, shot 39.3% from three-point range. Barnes shot 34.3% from three last season. Parker shot 39% from three.

Mo Williams led all Cavaliers with 43.6% from three, while Delonté West chipped in with 39.9% from three. Daniel Gibson shot 38.2% and Tarence Kinsey shot 38.9%, as some of the best three-point shooters on the team. Former Cavs Wally Szczerbiak shot 41.1% from three and Sasha Pavlović shot 41% from three, but they are not expected to return for the 2009-10 season.

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