NBA Rumors: Cavaliers ‘lowballing’ J.R. Smith because of Mike Dunleavy; ‘Mercurial Sharpshooter’ could leave if receive higher offer from other teams


Rumors and speculations are now swirling around the 30-year-old shooting guard J.R. Smith who is reportedly entertaining offers from other NBA teams after the Cleveland Cavaliers give him a low offer.

J.R. Smith is one of the main contributors to the Cleveland Cavaliers’ success in the recent NBA Finals. However, the Cavaliers are not giving any hints on when they will sign the free agent. Timofey Mozgov and Matthew Dellavedova chose to sign with other teams after receiving decent offers. Will J.R. Smith leave the Cavaliers if other NBA teams offer a higher salary?

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Cavaliers GM David Griffin seems to be ‘very confident’ that J.R. Smith will not leave the team.

“I think the good news is J.R. wants to be here and we want J.R. back,” Griffin said on ESPN during the broadcast of the Cavaliers’ Summer League win against the Boston Celtics on Wednesday night. “These things sometimes take time and he has representatives that want him to be with us as well. When the time is right something will get done. I’m very confident about that.”

However, the main reason why J.R. Smith declined his player option is to have his salary raised and extend his contract with the Cleveland Cavaliers. If other NBA teams will offer him a salary, there is a possibility that he will change his mind and leave his current team.

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It is not undeniable that the Cavaliers want to upgrade their roster after Kevin Durant joined the Golden State Warriors. Mike Dunleavy was recently acquired by the Cleveland Cavaliers from the Chicago Bulls.

“What I’m really happy with in what we’ve been able to do in the Mike Dunleavy acquisition is get bigger, have a better shooter at the position and have somebody who is really versatile that’s going to be able to pass the ball for us, give us some secondary playmaking and we really lacked that,” Griffin said. “I think that was a big push for us.

“Beyond that, I think we need to get better from within.”

The 6-foot-9 big man can play either in the shooting guard or small forward position. His accuracy in the perimeter makes him the best fit for the 2 position. The acquisition of Mike Dunleavy could be a major reason on why the Cavaliers are not that eager to sign J.R. Smith in free agency.

Photo courtesy: @teamswish/Instagram

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