Tuesday, January 6, 2015

The Raven Report 1.6.15: Cavs Trade Waiters & L.A. Rams

By @nevaRWilliams

- Last night, the Cavaliers suffered an embarrassing loss to the Philadelphia 76ers, 95-92. Kevin Love's monster game of 28 points and 19 rebounds was squandered away when point guard Matthew Dellavedova took it upon himself to blow three straight possessions to seal the win, including missing two free throws. Joe Harris scored 16 in his first start, while Tristan Thompson added 18 points and 9 rebounds.

Now you might be asking yourself, why would Joe Harris get the start? Well, Dion Waiters was expected to start but was pulled right before the game. Why? Because GM David Griffin had something up his sleeve and the Cavaliers pulled off a three-way trade that involved Waiters, the New York Knicks and the Oklahoma City Thunder.

The deal breaks down like this:

Thunder: Dion Waiters

Cavaliers: J.R. Smith, Iman Shumpert, Protected 1st-Round Draft Pick (OKC)

Knicks: Lou Amundson, Alex Kirk, Lance Thomas, 2019 2nd Round Pick (CLE)

Waiters, 23, while averaging 10.5 points, just never seemed to find his fit on the new Cavaliers. From his reluctance to give up his starter role for a 6th man bench role, or his dicey shot selection and pouty attitude, it was bound to be a break up with the team sooner or later.

Smith, 29, is averaging 10.9 points, while Shumpert, 24, is averaging 9.3 points, along with 3.4 rebounds and 3.3 assists. Shumpert will be a restricted free agent in the summer of 2015.

The Thunder's pick sent to the Cavaliers is protected as follows: The Cavs will get the pick if it is outside the top 18 this year or if its outside the top 15 in 2016 or 2017. If it doesn't happen in either of the three years, it becomes two second round picks.

The Knicks also waived center Samuel Dalembert to save them $3.8 million. The Cavs could look into signing the big man as well.

As far as salaries go, J.R. Smith will make $5.9M, and has a player option for $6.3M in 2015-16. Iman Shumpert makes $2.7M and has a qualifying offer $3.8 in 2015-16. Dion Waiters this season will make $4M, then $5.1M in 2015-16 and finally a qualifying offer of $6.7M in 2016-17.

- It seems as thought the St. Louis Rams could be back in Los Angeles as early as 2016.

Rams owner Stan Kroenke has joined with owners of a 60 acre Hollywood Park site, purchased last year, to build an NFL stadium that would be adjacent to the Forum and Hollywood Park.

The planned "City of Champions Revitalization Project" would include an 80,000 seat stadium, a performance venue that seats up to 6,000, 890,000 square feet of retail, 780,000 square feet of office space, 2,500 new residential units, a 300 room hotel and 25 acres of public parks, playgrounds and open space.

The 80,000 seat stadium could also help in Los Angeles' bid to host the 2024 Olympics and possibly bid for a future World Cup.

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