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Report: Gordon Hayward meeting with Cavaliers, max offer sheet could be on the way

Jul 2, 2014, 1:23 PM EDT

Gordon Hayward AP

The Utah Jazz have been resolute in consistently saying that the plan is to match any offer that Gordon Hayward might receive this summer as a restricted free agent — including those tendered at the maximum level allowed.

Talk like that can often scare other teams away from actually making the offer, since once it’s signed those dollars tied to it can’t be used to go after anyone else while the team that holds the player’s rights takes its time in debating whether or not to match.

But for a team like the Cavaliers, who don’t exactly have anywhere close to star-level free agents lining up there to sign, it’s a risk worth taking. And Hayward may be similarly willing to force his current team’s hand.

From Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports:

Utah RFA Gordon Hayward is meeting with Cavaliers officials in Cleveland today, sources tell Yahoo. Offer sheet could be forthcoming.

And from Brian Windhorst of

Cavs believed to be preparing a max offer sheet for restricted free agent Gordon Hayward, sources said. Yahoo reported he is visiting today

The Suns and the Celtics have also expressed interest, but it appears as though things are getting serious with the Cavaliers.

Utah likely was hoping to get Hayward at a number less than the max, maybe in the neighborhood of $12 million a season. But once he signs that offer sheet, the Jazz won’t have a choice. A full max for Hayward would be five years, $85 million in Utah, and four years, $63 million anywhere else.

Teams like the Jazz need to overpay for star talent, and Hayward’s overall game may dictate they do just that.

  1. khadeemw - Jul 2, 2014 at 1:28 PM

    Any team that pays Hayward the max is crazy.

    • jeffkx - Jul 2, 2014 at 1:39 PM

      Agree 100%..but to get someone to come to Cleveland you have to but true (and I live here)..

    • laidlowo - Jul 2, 2014 at 1:41 PM

      How do some of these GMs get their jobs? Wow

      • jeffkx - Jul 2, 2014 at 1:47 PM

        Agree laidlowo..but my guess is Kyrie gave the Cavs a list of players to go after..and to get someone to Cleveland you have to overpay..

      • jeffkx - Jul 2, 2014 at 2:00 PM

        But I agree..this has the smell of a contract that will look awful in two years..

  2. milimpilim - Jul 2, 2014 at 1:28 PM

    I like the Cavs’ ambition, but coming off the bench behind Haywad would slow Wiggins’ development.

    • jeffkx - Jul 2, 2014 at 1:37 PM

      PG- Kyrie
      SG- Wiggins
      Traded: Dion
      not coming off the bench: Wiggins

      • milimpilim - Jul 2, 2014 at 1:53 PM

        Dude, Wiggins is a bonafide 3. For the time being he has shaky handles and questionable shooting.

      • jeffkx - Jul 2, 2014 at 1:58 PM

        Dude, Ask Cavs GM David Griffin what position he will’ll find out he and I are saying the same thing..

      • kb2408 - Jul 2, 2014 at 2:08 PM

        That squad won’t exactly strike fear in the hearts of teams. But I guess it could be interesting to see how they develop together. Now it’s on Utah to put up by matching any potential offer, or shut up by letting him walk. I believe they will match any offer he gets.

      • rodyaugu - Jul 2, 2014 at 3:15 PM

        Talented squad, but that doesn’t guarantee anything.

  3. paleihe - Jul 2, 2014 at 1:38 PM

    If I’m the Jazz, I let Hayward walk at 15 mil per year. That’s ridiculous.

    • kb2408 - Jul 2, 2014 at 2:12 PM

      And do what with the money they would save? Good free agents are not signing with the Jazz. They almost have no choice but to keep him. And it’s not like he’s a scrub. Not a max player but he certainly has talent.

      • kinggw - Jul 2, 2014 at 2:30 PM

        It doesn’t matter. Signing a guy like Hayward doesnt help them.

        The worse thing that could happen by letting him walk is that they will be a little worse than they are now and have the chance to get a franchise changing player with a top pick. They are headed back to the lottery anyway. It’s better to acquire a bunch of young talent and try to flip that for a star versus paying someone like a star who clearly doesn’t fit the bill.

      • paleihe - Jul 2, 2014 at 2:37 PM

        Exactly what kinggw said. Just because you may not land a key free agent doesn’t mean you should pay max for a decent, but not game-changing player.

        With Hayward they’ll be slightly better, maybe 1-2 positions higher in the Western conference. But, that also means a higher pick in next years draft, cause they’re going to the lottery with or without Hayward.

  4. unxpexted1 - Jul 2, 2014 at 1:41 PM

    There goes cleveland being cleveland.

    Maybe they’re trying to stiff the Jazz cause of the Boozer thing.

  5. cantonbound13 - Jul 2, 2014 at 1:44 PM

    This is what happens when bad teams are under the cap.

    • loungefly74 - Jul 2, 2014 at 2:19 PM

      nailed it.

      • jeffkx - Jul 2, 2014 at 3:05 PM

        a ton of cap space in a cruddy weather town..

  6. bucrightoff - Jul 2, 2014 at 1:48 PM

    Signings like this is what will cause the next lockout. Or teams could stop doing unbelievably stupid things.

    • kinggw - Jul 2, 2014 at 2:12 PM

      Greedy owners will cause the next lockout. These contracts have nothing to do with it.

      The onus is on the teams to be responsible. The Jazz should let Hayward walk, let Boston or Cleveland overpay. If they match a max offer, they deserve whatever comes with it. A good GM knows that being in Utah or Cleveland you have to overpay somewhat, but at his max Hayward should be a $10-11M guy. Nothing in his skill set warrants that type of payday he is set to receive.

  7. reesesteel23 - Jul 2, 2014 at 1:49 PM

    Ok what is really going on in the NBA?

    • kinggw - Jul 2, 2014 at 2:14 PM

      Bad teams + too much cap space + overzealous GMs trying to make a splash = Guys like Hayward getting max offers

      • phillyguyindc - Jul 2, 2014 at 2:29 PM

        + not enough talent in the league or impact free agents + restricted free agency

  8. balsagna - Jul 2, 2014 at 2:19 PM

    I wish I watched more than 2 Jazz games in my life so I knew what kind of player Hayward is….I really have no idea.

    • antistratfordian - Jul 2, 2014 at 2:31 PM

      You’re that casual?

      • balsagna - Jul 2, 2014 at 2:47 PM

        Casual in terms of what? I watch the nationally televised games and that’s about it. I have no interest in purchasing the package, so living on the East coast, how exactly am I supposed to catch Jazz games? I am a Cavs fan and get to watch approximately 4 games a year. Does that make me casual? I guess so, but it’s not my fault that the nationally televised games consist of 5 teams.

      • antistratfordian - Jul 2, 2014 at 6:57 PM

        A casual fan. Someone who only watches nationally televised games. Most of the regulars here are basketball junkies. I might watch 2 Jazz games in a week, and it’s not because I particularly like watching the Jazz, but that’s just how the cookie crumbles sometimes when you have League Pa ss and you’re pa ssionate about the game.

      • clevelandrox - Jul 2, 2014 at 6:32 PM

        Gordon was the only player in the league that avg 16pts 5reb 5 ast 1.5 stl and 1.5 blks last year, that doesnt really do it justice, there were a lot was stretches were he was all star calliber, than grind of being a first time alpha dog did wear him down at times..

  9. unxpexted1 - Jul 2, 2014 at 2:19 PM

    he should get the lance stephenson deal. 5 years 44 milly. He’s good, really good. But not good enough now to offer that kind of money, even though if he keeps trending he’ll be worth that at some point.

  10. rrhoe - Jul 2, 2014 at 2:31 PM

    I smell a lockout on the horizon,these signings are further proof these franchises need protection from themselves.

  11. loungefly74 - Jul 2, 2014 at 2:36 PM

    so many things would be fixed if NBA contracts were like NFL contracts with limited garauntees. this case, for example,…Gordon gets the max…happens to play like “meh”…they cut him after the season with no garauntee on the rest…he made $15 million that year but thats it. that way, the team doesnt get stuck with a bogus deal.

    yeah, yeah, i know this will never happen…

  12. phillycannon - Jul 2, 2014 at 3:04 PM

    12.0 ppg

    3.1 ast

    3.4 rpg

    Career #’s

    Max contract player……nowhere near, with those stats.

    • money2long - Jul 2, 2014 at 4:00 PM

      Honestly it’s called potential.
      I think you guys have to all realize they are not paying Hayward for what he’s done but what they think he can do or become in the future.

      Also , like canton said, bad team under cap will do this. Someone else mentioned that if ur a bad team this is your only weapon to ring in talent. Busting out the checkbook. Sad but it’s a business.

      • phillycannon - Jul 2, 2014 at 5:26 PM

        His potential is ok, but how can you justify what is reported that the Cavs will offer the max. With his potentia, he is around a 25-30 million dollar player. And with giving players huge contracts off of potential is how most teams in all pro teams end of suffering 3-4 years down the line. I know this is the Cavs we are talking about….but cmon please help justify this!

    • bougin89 - Jul 2, 2014 at 4:40 PM

      Who uses career averages when talking about a player as young as Hayward?

      Last year his counting stats were 16.2 ppg, 5.1 rpg, 5.2 apg. Plus the kid has shown he can shoot well behind the 3 point line when he’s not the #1(and only) option. He can do a little of everything.

      Hayward has good value but I would agree with you that he’s not max contract worthy.

  13. balsagna - Jul 2, 2014 at 3:42 PM

    Reports out of Cleveland have the numbers being discussed in this as “greatly exaggerated”. Take it for what it’s worth.

  14. bigwii - Jul 2, 2014 at 3:46 PM

    Hayward and Wiggins can both play the 2 and 3. Hayward played the 2 a lot last year because of his ability to handle the ball and shoot they would complement each other well.

  15. stevejames1012 - Jul 2, 2014 at 3:57 PM

    For all you Cleveland guys. I’m Jazz fan here in SLC. I’ll tell that the Jazz fan base would be shocked if Gordon doesn’t come back. It would require a max deal for sure.
    Hayward plays on the US team, he’s been revered and coveted by the likes of Doc Rivers, Brad Stevens and Jeff Hornacek. He’s gonna get paid.

    • jeffkx - Jul 2, 2014 at 7:46 PM

      Reports here are a possible sign and trade for someone like Dion Waiters plus other hearing the same?

  16. csbanter - Jul 2, 2014 at 7:18 PM

    Hayward would be a perfect fit for Celtics. He should be wary of Cleveland, Rondo is probably going to get traded so the Celtics would be his team.

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