The Cleveland Cavaliers are signing guard Sam Merrill to a three-year contract, ESPN Cavs beat reporter Danny Cunningham wrote in a Tuesday tweet.
Years two and three of the deal are non-guaranteed. Cleveland.com Cavs reporter Chris Fedor first broke the news on Tuesday morning.
Merrill, who first signed a 10-day contract with the Cavs in early March, earned minutes in a 24-point win against the Detroit Pistons on March 4. He scored two points in his four minutes of floor time, using the open space from a defensive rotation from Pistons forward Isaiah Livers to cut into the paint and take a pass from forward Dean Wade. He earned minutes with the Milwaukee Bucks and Memphis Grizzlies in the previous two seasons, playing in 36 games and starting in two between the two franchises.
The 6-foot-4-inch guard from Utah State averaged 16.4 points, 3.4 rebounds and 2.8 assists per game in 18 games played with the Cleveland Charge during the 2022-23 season.
Forward Dean Wade was the last player to sign a multi-year deal with the Cavs after spending time with the Charge, according to Right Down Euclid Editor-in-Chief Evan Evan Dammarell.
For Merrill, the opportunity to stick around with Cleveland on a multi-year deal is a dream come true.
“Playing in the NBA was always a dream of mine in high school and to be honest, it was never something that I realistically expected,” Merrill said on March 3, via Cleveland.com. “Guys from where I grow up, it just doesn’t happen, right?
“For most guys, it doesn’t happen. I’m at a point in my career where I’m a little older, having spent four years in college and this is now my third year out and I’m really grateful for the opportunities I’ve had to play in the NBA but for me, going into the G League as opposed to potentially going overseas was just about, coming off the injury, going out and playing. Haven’t really had a chance to just play and show what I can do.”