Cleveland Cavaliers Rumors: Tristan Thompson Contract Talks Far Apart, Qualifying Offer Option? Kyrie Irving Out With Injury, Mo Williams Starter

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Sep 04, 2015 12:17 PM EDT
Tristan Thompson #13 and LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers
Eric Bledsoe #2 of the Phoenix Suns looks for a pass while being double teamed by Tristan Thompson #13 and LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers during the second half at Quicken Loans Arena on March 7, 2015 in Cleveland, Ohio. The Cavaliers defeated the Suns 89-79."

The Cleveland Cavaliers and Tristan Thompson have been talking a contract extension all summer and the two sides are currently far apart, as Thompson is looking for a max extension and could sign his qualifying offer if the Cavs don't meet his price. The Cavs may have Kyrie Irving out until January with a knee injury and Mo Williams could be the starter until he returns.

The Cavaliers and Thompson are not close on a deal right now and the sides could let things play out into October. The Cavs previously offered a five-year deal worth $80 million to Thompson earlier in the summer, but his camp rejected that offer. According to, Chris Haynes reports that there is "limited to zero communication" between the two sides right now because of the gap between the Cavaliers offer and what Thompson is looking for.

Haynes reports that Thompson's agent Rich Paul is looking for a max deal for Thompson at $94 million, but the Cavs best offer so far has been $80 million. Haynes writes that the "$14 million figure" difference is the reason why the sides have not been communicating. There were reports last week that Thompson was considering signing the qualifying offer and taking a one-year deal if he doesn't get a max contract, which would make him an unrestricted free agent next summer. Thompson has until October 1 to take the qualifying offer.

Thompson technically could get an offer sheet from another team, but so far there have been no reports of that happening. According to Ric Bucher at Bleacher Report, Paul thinks that Thompson could get a max contract on the market next summer from the Toronto Raptors. Paul reportedly has pushed the idea that if Thompson doesn't get a max deal, he will sign the qualifying offer.

Earlier in the summer Brian Windhorst reported that the Cavs and Thompson were in a "stalemate" over the contract, as Thompson's situation does not have a clear "precedent" to work from. Thompson is surely a very talented and young player, but Kevin Love is the starter and he just got a max deal. The Cavs likely do not want to pay the max for someone who is not a starter and while they value Thompson, clearly Thompson's camp thinks he is worth more.

The Cavaliers could be without Kyrie Irving for a long stretch this season, as Haynes reports that the point guard could be out until January. According to, sources report that while Irving's rehab has been going "smoothly," there is a chance that Irving could be "unavailable" until January. Irving had knee surgery after being injured in the NBA finals and the Cavaliers are trying to be careful, as they don't want Irving to deal with a setback. Mo Williams and Matthew Dellavedova are the other point guards on the roster behind Irving.

Check here for more on the talks between the Cavaliers and Thompson.

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