So somebody offered Anderson Varejao a contract. We don't know who, though smart people are saying Memphis. But it could be someone else, Memphis GM Chris Wallace has reportedly visited Argentina, but that could be to talk to Andres Nocioni rather than Andy (and it could involve a sign-and-trade sending Pau Gasol to Chicago).
Brian Windhorst says that if the Memphis (or whoever) offer is somewhere around $7-8 million a season, the Cavs will match (as Varejao, like Nocioni, is a restricted free agent). But, he says, if that deal is in the $10 million range, the Cavs will most likely pass. This seems like pretty sound reasoning to me.
$10 million a year for a part time role player is pretty ridiculous. I love Varejao and what he brings to the table, but he is not worth $10 million a year. Hell, I'm not even sure he's worth $7-8 million.
First of all, if the Cavs match the offer for Varejao at $7 million a year (which is likely the lowest we'd be looking at) they'd basically be forced to trade away Drew Gooden. Gooden is scheduled to make $6.4 million next season and $7.1 the year after, I can't see a scenario where he'd be cool with his backup being paid more than him. Trading Gooden isn't necessarily a bad thing; he has a team friendly deal and he could bring in something of value (like a Shawn Marion? The Suns want to cut payroll and they really wanted Drew Gooden last summer). So if you think the Cavs have to resign Varejao because they need to keep their front court intact, you're wrong. If the Cavs keep Varejao and he's paid more than $7 million per year, Drew Gooden won't be around much longer.
Second of all, I know we all love Varejao's feistiness and hustle, but I'm not sure you throw a lot of money at that type of player. His offense is extremely raw and he often makes bonehead plays at the offensive end (like the end of Game 3). He's not a particularly great defender either; sure, he draws a lot of charges and offensive fouls, but he's not a shot blocker or physical presence. He's scrappy and annoying (don't get me wrong, I love that, but I don't this scrappy and annoying should net you $8-10 million per).
Plus, if the NBA changes their flopping rules, Varejao's biggest strength is negated and the Cavs are stuck paying at least $7 million to a big man with no offense and no defense. And with his offense, I know he's young and he's got time to improve his O, but does anyone think that Varejao is ever going to be as polished offensively as Drew Gooden is right now? How long do we wait for that? The Cavs offense stinks as it is, they definitely don't need this 35 minutes a night (that commentary is sweet by the way).
I guess it's obvious I'd let Varejao walk. Maybe it's the bad taste leftover from Game 3, I dunno. But I just don't see this guy being worth that much money. I'm not sure how he'd hold up playing starters minutes over 82 games (he takes a lot of contact and his wild style could lead to injury). The Cavs have a team full of overpaid defensive minded guys who can't shoot (Eric Snow, Larry Hughes, Ira Newble) and one guy who's overpaid, isn't defensive minded and can't shoot (hi Donyell Marshall!), I'm not sure paying Anderson Varejao big bucks is the way to go.