Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Varejao Signs with Bobcats

I'm a tad surprised at this:
In need of a big man, the Charlotte Bobcats reached agreement Tuesday on a three-year offer sheet with Cleveland restricted free agent Anderson Varejao, giving the Cavaliers a week to match the deal or lose him.

ESPN The Magazine's Ric Bucher reported the offer sheet is worth $17.4 million, which would fit the Bobcats' mid-level salary cap exception.

This seems weird to me. $17.4 million for 3 years is very reasonable and I'm suprised Varejao signed for it, considering this:
He also refused Cleveland's opening offer of five years, $20 million, and then its latest offer of five years, $32 million, with a starting salary slightly below the midlevel exception.

So the Cavs basically have three options: let Andy walk, work out a sign-and-trade or match the (very reasonable) offer and have to deal with a disgruntled Brazilian.

Personally, I'd like to see the Cavs match the offer, if only because they need a backup big man and the contract won't kill the cap. And if Varejao balks and wants out of Cleveland? Fine, trade him to someone besides Charlotte (I don't care for the Bobcats roster, who would the Cavs want? Adam Morrison?).

Either way, things just got interesting.

7 comments:

Erik said...

Brian Windhorst said on Tony Rizzo's show that the Cavs will match, which should be an obvious choice given the fact that the contract sheet signed is only a fraction of the largest offer the Cavs made.

I think a sign-and-trade is out of the picture if Varejao signed the offer sheet with Charlotte. In order to make a sign-and-trade, the Cavs would need to sign Varejao, then trade him.

I'm in the camp that believes the Bobcats are doing Dan Fegan a favor by forcing the Cavs to match a two-year offer, guaranteeing that Fegan's client is an UFA in a year and a half.

The Bobcats had no real intention of luring Varejao away, but apparently Fegan and Charlotte GM Rod Higgins have been scratching each other's backs since Higgins was in the Warriors front office.

With Fegan clients Matt Carroll and Jason Richardson on the Charlotte roster, the Bobcats are probably putting Fegan's kids through college.

graham said...

I'm almost positive its against the rules for the Cavs to turn around and trade him to Charlotte. I also thought teams can't trade a player until 3 months after he's signed (unless a sign-and-trade is worked out, but can't be Charlotte), which would be after the trade deadline.

Erik is right on point: It doesn't make sense for Charlotte to sign him when they must have figured Cavs would sign. Sure seems like collusion to me.

It seems AV got a decent deal, given his position, thanks to the Bobcats. He gets a decent deal, is a FA after 2 years (the 3rd year is a player option), and will likely hit FA b/c the Cavs could have trouble trading a guy after this year who will only be under contract for one more year.

I guess it's good the Cavs got him for pretty cheap, but it seems it'll be hard to get something back for him before he eventually leaves.

Ben said...

Ya, that's the thing, this doesn't make sense from Charlotte's end. If they had front loaded the deal (like the Jazz and Boozer) or gave him just a ludicrous deal, it would add up.

But the Bobcats know that the Cavs will match that kind of reasonable deal. They're basically doing the Cavs a favor (and Dan Fegan as well).

I'm not as up on all the NBA trading rules as I probably should be...

Erik said...

The Bobcats aren't doing the Cavs any favors. Ferry wanted to sign Varejao for five years at the kind of money they'll now have to match. Instead, Ferry will have Varejao for a year and a half -- and maybe only one productive year if Varejao has to spend most of this season playing himself back into shape.

Rod Higgins did Dan Fegan a favor by allowing Varejao to break the shackles tying him to the Cavs after one more season. Maybe Fegan will attempt to steer Varejao to the Bobcats in the summer of '09. It wouldn't surprise me if the sides have a little "wink-wink" about where Varejao is going to be playing in two years.

Collusion? Absolutely. But what the NBA front office doesn't know won't hurt them.

Erik said...

http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/columns/story?columnist=bucher_ric&page=varejaobucher-071205

What a shock. An ESPN story by one of their "big three" Cavs haters (Bucher, Stein and Ford) attempting to make the Cavs look like the bad guys in this whole Varejao situation.

What does ESPN have against the Cavs? Outside of Chris Broussard, all ESPN's NBA guys do is rip them.

Do they resent the fact that LeBron isn't playing for big-market team that much?

Ben said...

the comments on that Bucher article are hilarious.

also, check out this: http://sports.yahoo.com/nba/blog/nba_experts/post/Give-Ferry-credit-for-Varejao-victory?urn=nba,56227

graham said...

Yeah, now it seems like almost everyone outside of Bucher is crediting Ferry, even if the deal turned out to be for less money.

I guess Windhorst is right when he said the Cavs maintained their cap flexibility.

Guess we'll find out how well it worked out in a year or so. In any case, screw Rod Higgins. The best anybody could come up with is they signed him b/c of the 1% chance the Cavs wouldn't match? Gimme a break. I'm sure all the GMs love this guy for letting Fegan off the hook.