The Disappointment Zone

Musings from a Cleveland sports fan

Breaking News: Bobcats Offer Varejao Contract

Posted by disappointmentzone on 4 December 2007

The Charlotte Bobcats have offered restricted free agent Anderson Varejao a three year contract. The offer is for $17.4 million, with an opt-out clause after year two. The Cavs have seven days to match the offer or else Varejao will be lost and gone forever.

There is no way the Cavs don’t match this offer.

UPDATE: QUICK ANALYSIS: According to reports the first year of the contract is worth $5.36 million, which is less than the amount the Cavs were offering in their three-year, $20 million deal. Varejao must seriously want to be an unrestricted free agent to leave money on the table for the chance to be unrestricted one year sooner. Should Varejao opt out after year two he’d be opting out in the summer when Snow, Gooden, Jones, and Marshall come off the books, which means that the Cavs would have the cap room to either resign him to a longer deal or aggressively pursue someone in free agency, knowing that Hughes, Z and Pavlovic are coming off the books the following season. The opt-out clause damages the value of the contract as a trade chip.

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5 Responses to “Breaking News: Bobcats Offer Varejao Contract”

  1. Erik said

    The Bobcats have no intention of trying to lure Varejao away with this deal. I think the Bobcats just did Dan Fegan a favor by forcing the Cavs to accept what amounts to a two-year deal for Andy, ensuring that he can become an UFA in a year and a half.

    What probably happened is that Fegan went to Rod Higgins (an ally of his among the NBA GM ranks) and asked him to offer Varejao a contract about equal to the MLE so that Andy could accept it and break the stalemate with Cleveland. If Cleveland calls Charlotte’s bluff and lets Andy walk (not bleemin’ likely), the Bobcats have the cap space to absorb the contract. If the Cavs match, Andy is still an UFA in the summer of 2009.

    It would be good to get Andy back for the sake of bench depth, but this can’t be an ideal situation for Danny Ferry. He wanted to lock Andy up for five years. Instead, he might have him for one season of decent play, especially if Varejao is out of shape and out of sync for the rest of this year.

    I don’t know what kind of budget and emphasis the Cavs place on college scouting, but they really need to hit on their draft picks the next few years. The summer of ’09 looks to be a watershed time with regard to the roster, where the Cavs could either build a championship-caliber team or LeBron could start considering other options for the summer of 2010.

  2. I agree that this deal looks awfully weird. The thing is, the Cavs have to match the offer. It would be insane to let Varejao walk, especially when he’ll be playing for so little money. I think it’ll take Andy 3 weeks to get back into game shape, at which point the Cavs will have one of their most productive players back in the fold. With the injury to Marshall the Cavs desperately need Andy back, if only to spell Z, who’s been logging far too many minutes.

    Ferry would have ideally signed him to a longer deal, but the upside is that this contract does give the Cavs a little room for evaluation and the length protects against a serious injury.

  3. Erik said

    I guess the advantage is that Andy will be playing for his UFA contract for the next season and a half, so we know he won’t slack.

    If Ferry had succeeded in signing Andy for five years as he originally wanted, I don’t know why, but Andy seems like a prime candidate to slack off with a fat contract in tow.

  4. I absolutely agree with Erik. I’m not a fan of Andy anymore…everybody has to look out for #1 in that business, I understand. but there are extremes to every rule and he has shown himself over the top…I don’t know who pee’d in his cheerios but he does not want to be here and is willing to give up MILLIONS of dollars to get out asap.

  5. It’s not so much that he doesn’t want to be here as he wants to be an unrestricted free agent. For that, I don’t blame him. If he felt the Cavs were offering him a deal below market value then he should have resisted signing and done whatever he could to become unrestricted. It looks like he’ll be getting his wish in two years.

    The benefit to the Cavs, as Erik pointed out, is that he won’t have time to slack off. He’ll be playing in what essentially amounts to one extended contract year. If he doesn’t play well then he won’t get his contract and the Cavs won’t have to feel bad about having him on the books for three more season. If he does play well then he’ll help the team in the short term and they’ll just have to compete with other teams to sign him.

    Is this ideal? Of course not. But I don’t read into it at all that wanting to be an unrestricted free agent must come at the cost of not wanting to play somewhere.

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