Shipping away Iman Shumpert makes perfect sense, financially, for Cavs
Earlier today, multiple reports surfaced stating that the Eastern Conference champion Cleveland Cavaliers have been engaged in trade discussions with several teams around the NBA, primarily the Houston Rockets, about the availability of swingman Iman Shumpert.
According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, Shumpert would be sent to the Rockets in an effort to free up a bit of cap space. In return, Wojnarowski reports that the Cavs would receive a package of non-guaranteed contracts, which would allow the team more financial flexibility to go after other roster upgrades in the open market, as well as the ability to offer Kyle Korver a respectable contract.
Shumpert, 27, has two years and $21.3 million remaining on his four-year contract, with the final year being a player option. In his career-high 76 appearances with the Cavs last season, “Shump,” as he is known, averaged 7.5 points (career-high 41 percent from beyond the arc), 2.9 rebounds, and 1.4 assists in 25.5 minutes per contest.
Why would the Cavs consider letting Shumpert go? The answer is relatively simple: money.
As most fans of the team know, the Cavs are (and have been) well over the salary cap. If Shumpert is indeed traded to the Rockets, Cleveland’s committed salary line would drop from $125 million to $115 million guaranteed, which is $4 million below the league’s $119 million luxury tax threshold. Furthermore, such a deal would save the Cavs $17.1 million in potential taxes. ESPN reports that this transaction could save the Cavs as much as $28 million in total this season.
Shumpert, one of the best on-ball defenders in the game today, has become a fan-favorite to many of the Cavaliers faithful. There is no doubt his presence in the locker room, as well as on the floor, would certainly be missed should he be dealt away.