Despite superstar LeBron James returning home, intent on winning Cleveland city’s first NBA Championship since its birth in 1970, there was a serious concern in the Cleveland Cavaliers roster due to a collective lack of post-season experience. However, with the signing of veteran Shawn Marion, general manager David Griffin seems to be taking the right steps. Marion will join new signing Kevin Love after spending five seasons with the Dallas Mavericks. Marion has agreed to a contract with the franchise worth US$1.4 million for a single season, which was all the Cavaliers could offer due to their salary cap. Although the team’s roster boasts All-Stars Kyrie Irving and Love, the duo has not played a single minute in the playoffs. On the other hand, Marion has not only clocked minutes in 103 post-season games in his career but also has the experience of winning a championship. He played an instrumental role in Mavericks’ 2011 NBA Championship victory. The Cavaliers have already signed Mike Miller and James Jones with both players having had victorious playoff experiences with James in Miami. Ray Allen is still considering retirement but is reportedly inclined to sign with the team. However, no source or confirmation has been received yet.
After Paul George suffered a gruesome lower left leg injury during a scrimmage with the USA National Basketball team, the Indiana Pacers and Marion had shown mutual interest in finalising a deal. A huge reason why the 6 ft 7 in athlete opted to play for the Cavaliers next season could be because of the relationship he shares with Griffin in their time together with the Phoenix Suns.
Considered a strong perimeter player, Marion averaged 15 points and 9 rebounds last season with the Mavericks. His contract with the Cavaliers is expected to be announced on Monday.Published 18 Aug 2014, 14:17 IST