NBA Rumors: Cleveland Cavaliers Target Tayshaun Prince, Dorell Wright for LeBron James Backup? Timofey Mozgov Not Signing Contract Extension

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Aug 06, 2015 04:10 PM EDT
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LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers and Tayshaun Prince #22 of the Detroit Pistons
LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers and Tayshaun Prince #22 of the Detroit Pistons during the game on February 24, 2015 at The Palace of Auburn Hills in Auburn Hills, Michigan."

The Cleveland Cavaliers are still working to sign JR Smith and Tristan Thompson to contracts and the team also could look for another backup for LeBron James, as Richard Jefferson likely cannot play heavy minutes and players like Tayshaun Prince, Dorell Wright, Michael Beasley, Jordan Hamilton, Shawne Williams, Landry Fields and Rasual Butler could be options. The Cavs also have Timofey Mozgov likely not taking a contract extension this season and that could make the team look at bringing over Sasha Kaun from overseas.

The Cavaliers have been as active as anyone this offseason after signing back Kevin Love, Matthew Dellavedova, James Jones and James and now more players could follow. The team signed Mo Williams and Richard Jefferson to the roster and reports have Smith still open to returning. The Cavs are bringing back Tristan Thompson and they have the chance to make another move or two heading into the back stretch of the summer.

The team reportedly was interested in a trade for Jamal Crawford this summer, but that did not come close to happening and now the team could look for a solid backup for James. Cavs Sports Talk wrote on Twitter that the team is "still in need of a versatile wing" player that can truly back up James, as Richard Jefferson is more of a reserve option than a full backup. Jefferson is 35 years old and he comes in after averaging six points and 2.5 rebounds per game in 16 minutes per game for the Mavs last year.

James plays heavy minutes and some available options left on the market include Tayshaun Prince, Dorell Wright, Michael Beasley and Fields. The Cavs reportedly had interested in Prince during the season as a trade option last year, but that did not happen at the deadline and now the team could consider making a move. Wright has not had much attention on the market, while Fields, Williams and Beasley could be potential fits.

The Cavs have depth and while they also would like to add another big man to back up Timofey Mozgov, a move for another small forward could be what the team does. Prince comes in after averaging 7.5 points and 3.6 rebounds per game last season and the combination of Jefferson and Price could be effective supporting James. According to the Akron Beacon Journal, the Cavs reached out to Prince early in the offseason and so far the sides have not come close on a deal.

The Cavaliers were reportedly unhappy about Smith opting out of his contract, as it would have been easier to keep him on his deal, but the sides appear to be getting close to a new deal. Smith reportedly had interest from the Sixers on the market and Cavs Sports Talk reports that Smith has denied the offer for Philadelphia in the hopes of returning to Cleveland.

The Cavaliers also may want to sign a contract extension with Mozgov after how well he played last season, but reports have the center not looking to do that. Mozgov may want to try and maximize his potential on the free agent market and he is coming in at a bargain of less than $5 million for the Cavs this season. The Cavaliers may also look at bringing over free agent Sasha Kaun from Russia, as they retain his draft rights.

Check here for more on the Cleveland Cavaliers offseason moves, progress on JR Smith and Tristan Thompson and for more on options for James' backup.

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