NBA Trade Rumor: Cavaliers, T-Wolves Talking Trade Involving Varejao

It’s being reported by Legion Sports (@MySportsLegion) that the Cavaliers and Minnesota Timberwolves are discussing a trade involving Cavaliers center Anderson Varejao as well as Minnesota forward Derrick Williams and center Nikola Pekovic.

Varejao, 30, is in his ninth year with the Cavaliers and is averaging 14.1 points and 14.4 rebounds and a 22.08 PER this season in 25 games. He is under contract for up to two more seasons after this one. Andy has missed the team’s last nine games due to a bruised right knee. This is far from the first time that Varejao’s name has been mentioned in trade rumors this season.

Williams was the second pick in the 2011 NBA Draft, being selected immediately after Kyrie Irving. He is averaging 8.5 points and 4.2 rebounds with a 15.64 PER in 26 games (9 starts) and 17.4 minutes per contest. He is a 6’8″, 21-year-old power forward out of Arizona that had similar numbers in more playing time last season. He would be under team control for at least three more seasons, same as Kyrie.

Pekovic, 27, is a 6’11”, 290 lb. center from Montenegro in his third NBA season. Nikola is averaging 15.9 points, 8.3 rebounds, and a 19.35 PER in 28 games (all starts) and 31.5 minutes per night. He is a free agent at season’s end.

Related: Trading Varejao Still Doesn’t Make Sense

  • Chris

    Hate to say it, and I know varejao has a friendly contract, but I think the cavs should pull the trigger on this. If we can get a draft pick as well then we will have fleeced Minnesota.

  • architrance

    Charles Barkley “turrrible.”

    Unless Andy’s knee is worse off than they’ve let on.

    Minny has already traded away their own 2013 #1 pick, so they can’t trade away the next years too, right? They do own Memphis’s this year, but that won’t be a good pick. So Andy for Williams? No way, we’re the one’s getting fleeced in that deal.

  • Jack

    um, no

  • Chris

    21 years old, 3 years of control, and a draft whose best players are 4s and 5s. You need to shed your fan favorite lens and see this would be a good trade for the cavs.

  • Lyon25

    So we get another undersized PF and a free agent C who will leave or we’ll have to overpay (Asik). How is that worth trading a potential All Star under club control for a good price.

  • Lyon25

    If you think Williams is the best player they can get for Andy, you either greatly overvalue Williams or don’t understand how much teams in the League need a C. There have to be better deals to be made for Andy

  • Chris

    Varejao is 30 and cannot play an entire season. He will be 32 by the time the cavs are somewhat relevant. I think we as cavs fans believe more teams want varejao than the reality of the situation. Derek Williams is more of a 3 IMO, and obviously nikola is not a relevant factor in the trade. With Thompson playing better and the cavs on their way to a top 3 pick that can be used on a big, this may be the time to deal Andy. If we can get someone better than the number 2 pick of the 2011 draft who is under control for 3 years before his prime then sign me up.

  • Lyon25

    If Williams could play the 3 I’d be in. But from what I’ve seen he’s a tweener. Dude has tons of potential, but that’s basically half our team and only 1 of them has shown it has come to fruition.

  • roland major

    This trade would be about Pekovic. As a Cavs fan and CLE native living in Minneapolis let me share that Pek is a beast.

  • gren

    Because after this year, he won’t be under our ‘club control’. So you roll the dice with an incoming Center, while picking up a solid forward and maybe a pick. How is that not better than watching Andy leave?

  • @TheDeePagel

    I can hear the cheers at the Q already…


  • saggy

    Cavs have been watching how Chip Kelly has been handling himself.

    Cavs figure they need to drum up some press about everyone wanting Varejao, so as to create more demand. Nice move.

  • Derp

    Does anybody know if there is any validity to this?

  • Lyon25

    He is under contract 2 more years. So you’re rolling the dice that Pekovic will stay and cost less than Andy’s contract as well as hope Williams figures it out at a position we already have a project-TT

  • This trade would be beneficial in the long run for the Cavaliers. You get a 20 year old forward in Derrick Williams, which can be used in the SF / PF positions. Additionally, you could add a draft pick (possibly). Lastly, in a draft with the top 5 players being majority Centers in Noel, Lin, and Zeller it would allow for depth, which the Cavaliers lack.

  • pete

    He’s sort of a cross between Marc Gasol and those vikings that Led Zeppelin wrote songs about.

  • architrance

    No, because he’s a free agent this summer. Why trade one of your top two players for a half season of someone you could just sign to a long term deal next year???

  • architrance

    Add what draft pick??? This isn’t exactly a franchise defining trade, it would be a dump of legit talent for a project in Williams.

  • architrance

    What – @mysportslegion doesn’t sound legit enough???

  • Zydrunas

    Nikola is the biggest factor in this trade actually. Even though his contract is up after the year, he will be restricted which means the cavs could match any offer, which they would if they made this deal.

  • roland major

    Couldn’t the Cavs sign him to an extension if the trade happened? Or is that against the free agency rules?

  • roland major

    (Thinking back to Dwight Howard last year..) Ah, they wouldn’t be able to extend him. The best they’d be able to do is a Boozer handshake deal with Pek & his agent huh.. I agree that changes things.

  • The_Real_Shamrock

    Tristan Thompson’s play the last week could be feeding the idea to finally trade Varejao. Thompson has been a beast. I know Varejao is a favorite but lets face it Cavaliers fans have entirely to high a value for him. The deal above doesn’t exactly thrill me largely because Pekovic will be a FA but it isn’t horrible. Of course much if not all of this deal centers on Williams and whether or not he can improve.

  • Thats why I said possibly haha.

  • horace

    bob finnan wrote about this “trade” this morning. it was purely speculative, along the lines of, “the cavs would likely ask for player X and Y if they were to engage in trade talks.” mylegionsports reported this as a developing trade a couple hours later. id guess there isn’t much to this rumor.

  • Pek is a restricted free agent after this year, meaning the Cavs can match any offer made to him, which they likely would if they made this trade.

  • Pek would be a RFA as well, so it’s likely the Cavs would keep him unless he gets a ridiculous deal from someone.

  • Lyon25

    Which is possible. Who would’ve thought Asik would get as much money as he did.

  • FearTheRoo

    I wouldn’t make a trade with the TWolves unless it involves Kevin Love, which is very unlikely. Something that could get us Williams and Love would be awesome. But I don’t think Grant can pull that off.

  • SDA

    completely agree. Remember back in the day when M.J. made it a point to go get Rodman? same kinda thing, you cant over value A.V. and what he brings to a team.

  • Rookie_of_the_Year

    derrick williams is a good player, give him time and he’ll eventually become a good legitimate starter

  • I like Nikola… we need a C and hes not bad

  • Kildawg

    If the Cavs do trade Varejao, they should get a solid SF (their weakest spot) plus another solid F/C to come off the bench, and don’t forget (at least) a first-round pick. The solid SF could start and the Cavs would benefit with Gee on the second unit with Waiters and Livingston.

  • Kildawg

    The Cavs might still match, they technically have to add salary to get the ‘salary floor’. I’d save the max contract for #6 on Miami or Kyrie Irving. Think the rule is only one max contract per team now thanks to the stunt pulled by Miami a couple years ago.

  • Danny

    Pekovic: 2011 PER of 21.47 and 2012 PER of 19.34. Per Hollinger, He’s not good defensively, but uses his size decently. Pek led the NBA on a per-minute basis in points in the paint.

    He’s worth at least $10M per year and he’ll get that in the offseason. Though it’s only his 3rd season, he just turned 27. His style of play lends itself to aging well as an NBA center. I’d guess he has 8 relatively high level years left. He’s traditional on offense, evidenced by his “points in the paint” production. Definitely a Top-10 center.

    Williams would be a nice pickup as well. He should probably be playing PF (and on a team without Kevin Love, that’s probably where he would play), and could be a valuable bench scorer on the Cavs. He’s technically undersized for the 4, but the NBA is shifting to more smallball units, especially in the playoffs, and he fits well as a smallball 4. In Cleveland, he wouldn’t need to live up to #2 overall pick expectations.

    I would do this trade. It wouldn’t necessarily be my first choice, but if it was the best offer I would take it over keeping Varejao

  • mgbode

    I agree with most of your points. The part I have a hard time with is that Pek is a traditional center. DW is a smallball PF (who has underperformed as well). So, are we going traditional or smallball? It’s nice to have both but those 2 guys seem pretty entrenched to their style.

    The one opening I could see is pairing Pek with TT as starters and DW w/ Waiters on the bench. Give us more scoring from the bench while maintaining a traditional starting lineup.

    We need to steal one of their PGs too for our 2nd unit.

  • Danny

    I like the idea of pairing Waiters and Williams off the bench. As to the smallball question, they can still play one traditional big in a smallball lineup. Cavs could roll with TT or Pek in that case. Sure, Pek would have a problem guarding someone like Bosh or Ibaka, but he would bulldoze that type of player on offense.

  • Luis Gonzalez

    do the trade immediately