Report: Anderson Varejao likely to sign with Warriors Sunday

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This could lead to an awkward reunion in June.

The Cleveland Cavaliers traded fan favorite and long-time Cav Anderson Varejao in a three-team deal at the deadline to bring in sharp shooting big Channing Frye. It was clearly a move that looks ahead to Golden State in the Finals and matching up with them. Portland got Varejao and instantly bought him out and waived him. Once he clears waivers Sunday, Varejao is a free agent who can sign anywhere (except back in Cleveland, under NBA rules).

How about Golden State?

They are the clear frontrunners, according to Marc Stein of ESPN.

The Golden State Warriors have emerged as the heavy favorite to sign soon-to-be free agent Anderson Varejao, according to league sources. League sources told ESPN.com that Varejao is leaning strongly toward joining the Warriors after he clears waivers Sunday afternoon at 5 p.m….

The Warriors would have to release a player to create an open roster spot but have a need for an addtional contributor on the front line with Festus Ezeli recovering from arthroscopic knee surgery and Andrew Bogut nursing an Achilles injury.

The Warriors would have minutes for Varejao to play, at least at first with the other starting big men sidelined for now. That role likely will shrink to nearly nothing come the playoffs, but he could be used in spot duty in certain matchups.

The other draw in Golden State is fellow Brazilian Leandro Barbosa.

If and when Golden State signs Varejao it sets up an awkward reunion in the NBA Finals (assuming both teams make it through, as expected).