Cavs sign Tristan Thompson to multi-year deal

October 23, 2015

The Cleveland Cavaliers have re-signed power forward Tristan Thompson, General Manager David Griffin announced.  Other outlets have reported that the deal is for five years and worth $82 million.

Thompson, a restricted free agent, ended his holdout and what had been a long and difficult negotiation.  Thompson's agent, Rich Paul, previously had sought an absurd max deal for the reserve forward with very limited offensive game.

Still, the Cavs were willing to pay above Thompson's likely value on the open market because he proved to be such an important member of the rotation during last season's playoff run.

An outstanding rebounder with a high motor, Thompson filled a vital role on the frontline after star Kevin Love was lost for the season due to a shoulder injury.

During the Cavs’ NBA Finals run in the 2015 playoffs, Thompson played in all 20 games (15 starts), averaging 9.6 points on .558 shooting, 10.8 rebounds and 1.2 blocks in 36.4 minutes per game. He registered nine double-doubles, while grabbing double-digit rebounds in 14 playoff games, including in all six games during the NBA Finals.

For Cleveland, the gamble of paying a reserve player such high dollars was mitigated by the fact that the salary cap will be increasing, and by the Cavs emergence as one of the likely favorites to win the NBA title this season.  In the grand scheme of things, dipping significantly into the luxury tax -- and keeping star LeBron James happy -- probably was in the team's best interests.

Thompson played in all 82 games (15 starts) in the 2014-15 regular season, finishing with averages of 8.5 points on a career-best .547 shooting from the field, and 8.0 rebounds in 26.8 minutes per game. It marked the third straight season he has played in all 82 games, increasing his consecutive games streak to 288 dating back to Feb. 10, 2012. That is the second-longest active streak in the NBA, behind only DeAndre Jordan’s 322 consecutive games played (dating back to March 25, 2011).

Last season, the 6-10 forward ranked fifth in the NBA in total offensive rebounds (274), and fifth in offensive rebounds per game (3.3). He recorded 14 double-doubles, while tying for the NBA-lead in double-doubles off the bench with eight. Thompson also led all NBA bench players in total rebounds (511) and offensive rebounds per game (3.2), while ranking second in total rebounds per game (7.6).

In a related move, the Cavs have waived forward Nick Minnerath.

By Staff of and news services

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