We’re less than two weeks away from the beginning of the regular season, and Tristan Thompson still doesn’t have a new contract from the Cleveland Cavaliers. The deadline to take his qualifying offer has come and gone, and Larry Coon over at Basketball Insiders says the Cavaliers have taken their five-year, $80 million offer off the table.
Thompson doesn’t have many great options at this point. It doesn’t seem like any offer sheet will be coming, and now Cleveland has lowered its five-year offer and still doesn’t appear to be interested in a short-term deal. He could continue to sit out into the regular season and hope the Cavaliers see they need him and up their offer again, but what if that doesn’t happen?
Would Thompson really consider sitting out the entire season? He could take that chance and bank on somebody (perhaps even the Cavaliers) still offering a ton of money next summer because of the cap jump, but there are no guarantees that would happen, especially after a year away from the game.
There’s some precedent for a Cavalier player holding out into the regular season, as Anderson Varejao did it in 2007. Varejao wound up signing an offer sheet with Charlotte for less than he was hoping for, but again, it doesn’t seem like there will be any offer sheet signed in this situation. If anything, a five-year deal worth close to $80 million may be the best play here, but who knows what Thompson and the Cavaliers will do.