Report: Brendan Haywood traded to Portland Trailblazers


Former North Carolina Tar Heel Brendan Haywood’s expiring contract has been a chip that the Cleveland Cavs have been hoping to cash in at some point this off season. They had dangled in front of the Cavs and the Nets, but nothing ever happened. Now three days before the contract becomes guaranteed, the Cavs have found a trade partner. That, according to reports by Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports, is the Portland Trailblazers. The Cavs have traded Haywood and shooting guard Mike Miller for two second round draft picks and a hefty trade exception.

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The Cavs netting a trade exception allows them to keep Haywood’s contract flexibility without keeping Haywood’s contract. That trade exception can be held by the Cavs until they need it, and it means that they would not necessarily have to lose additional players in a midseason trade. Of course that is betting that someone will want to dump a big contract piece at midseason.

Miller’s departure is surprising because he was one of LeBron James’ close friends. Whatever role he might have had is now open. Perhaps this is the sign that J.R. Smith could be back on his way to the Cavs on a reduced deal.

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For the Blazers, they will most likely waive Haywood before August 1. That will keep about ten million in cap savings. Their roster has drastically changed from the one that featured LaMarcus Aldridge just three months ago. Now it is a more defensive minded athletic roster with Tobacco Road additions Ed Davis, Al-Farouq Aminu, Mason Plumlee, and Gerald Henderson.

Haywood, unfortunately, is the odd man out here. He is past his prime, but he still might find someone who will need a seven footer for garbage minutes. That means that Haywood is still looking for an NBA home right now.

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