The Cleveland Cavaliers have LeBron James, Kevin Love, Tristan Thompson and Iman Shumpert hitting the market in free agency this summer and the team is expected to bring back the Big 3 of James, Love and Thompson after the first two opted out of their contracts and this comes as players like Monta Ellis, Tayshaun Prince, Mo Williams and David West could be potential free agent options for the Cavs.
The Cavaliers have a number of priorities to take care of this summer before even thinking about bringing in new players, as three of their most important players are hitting free agency. According to ESPN.com, LeBron James has used his opt out and will become a free agent, but he is not planning to meet with other teams. James plans on waiting and seeing what the Cavs do in free agency and that also could help the team bring in players before paying James, which also will cost a bunch on the cap.
UPDATE: per ESPN: Kevin Love will accept a five-year, $110 million contract extension with the Cavs according to sources
According to Pro Basketball Talk, Monta Ellis could be an option if his contract demands are not too high, while Marc Stein at ESPN reports that James would "love" the Cavaliers to bring in a free agent like Dunleavy. The Cavs need more consistent bench scoring and Dunleavy could be a strong option that doesn't cost much on the cap. With Love and Thompson likely coming back with James, the team will have to be smart with new free agents and a productive player like Dunleavy could come on the cheap. Dunleavy also hits threes and the team could use a specialty shooter for late game situations.
--UPDATE: Mike Dunleavy has signed with the Bulls. UPDATE: The Cavaliers have "reached out" to veteran Tayshaun Prince, according to Pro Basketabll Talk.
Kevin Love has opted out, but ESPN.com reports that "there is a feeling" around the league that Love will stay in Cleveland. Even if Love takes meetings with teams, his return is expected based on his comments from the end of the season. Love likely will not want to go back on his words and after seeing the team make it to the finals without him, he is looking to return and help the team get back. Love is in line for a five year, max contract deal if he wants to sign over a short term deal like James.
Tristan Thompson is a restricted free agent and he could get a max deal or "near a max deal" according to Marc Stein at ESPN. Thompson showed his value to the Cavs during the playoffs when Love was out and James has expressed his support for Cleveland bringing Thompson back. Thompson is a restricted free agent, so the Cavs will be able to match offers for him on the market.
The Cavaliers are going to be active in free agency even with Love, James and Thompson getting paid and players like Mo Williams and Monta Ellis could be options. The team also has JR Smith, Iman Shumpert and Matthew Dellavedova hitting the market and a couple of those players could return. According to Chris Haynes of Cleveland.com, GM David Griffin is open to Smith coming back, while sources report that Williams is "more than interested" in coming back to Cleveland as a free agent.