Former Nets starting guard Markel Brown signed with the Cavaliers on Tuesday and will compete for one of the reserve spots when the defending NBA champions convene for training camp later this month, Shams Charandia of The Vertical reports.
The third-year player saw Brooklyn rescind its qualifying offer this summer, re-routing him into free agency. He’s caught on with a far more successful team, but whether or not the 24-year-old Brown can stick in Cleveland is uncertain despite the Cavs’ current issues at guard.
Brown handled a consistent workload during his two seasons with the Nets, mostly serving as an off-the-bench presence. Although he started in 29 games as a rookie, he averaged 16.6 minutes per game in 2014-15 and 15.8 per night last season. The 6-foot-3 former second-round Timberwolves pick in ’14, Brown scored a career-best 5.9 points per contest last season.
While the Cavs do not need much scoring, they have multiple rotation holes at guard thanks to Matthew Dellavedova’s departure to the Bucks via restricted free agency and J.R. Smith’s impasse with the team. Without either, Brown has a clearer route to the team in a role behind Kyrie Irving and Iman Shumpert. Although, Smith is expected to re-sign with the Cavs at some point before the season.
Cleveland didn’t do much to replace Dellavedova but did buy its way into the second round, where the Cavs selected diminutive point guard Kay Felder. As of now, he could become the backup point guard after Mo Williams has not informed the Cavs whether or not he’ll return for this season. He’s a potential retirement candidate, helping explain the Brown signing.