The Timberwolves still need a better backup point guard to make a playoff push – they’re outscored by 4.7 points per 100 possessions when Ricky Rubio sits (+5.8 when he plays) – so they’ve turned their attention elsewhere.
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Jack has struggled in the first year of a four-year, $25.2 million contract (final year guaranteed for just $500,000). How badly do the Cavaliers want to get out of that?
By trading for Spencer Hawes, Cleveland has shown its not giving up on this season. Jack is overpaid, and his contract could soon become burdensome if it’s not already. But he helps the Cavaliers right now, swinging between both guard spots. If they’re serious about making the playoffs this, dumping Jack for only cap relief would hurt on the court right now.
A simple swap of Jack for J.J. Barea – the player mentioned in Miller rumors – works under the cap. Barea’s contract expires after next season, and he’s paid less than Jack. Cleveland would get both financial relief this season and flexibility a year or two sooner.
The Timberwolves would get their backup point guard, though at a significant cost. Although if that cost eventually leads to Kevin Love staying, it would be a bargain. Minnesota must improve to become more appealing to Love.
This really comes down to how badly the Cavaliers want to get out of Jack’s contract and how much Minnesota will pay for a backup.