Sources: Cavs talk Waiters with Knicks, others
The Cleveland Cavaliers are actively shopping second-year shooting guard Dion Waiters, according to sources with knowledge of the situation.
Three teams the Cavaliers are known to have spoken with are the New York Knicks, Chicago Bulls and Philadelphia 76ers, the sources said. The Cavs' targets are Iman Shumpert in New York, Evan Turner in Philadelphia and Luol Deng in Chicago, sources said.
It is believed Cleveland has reached out to other clubs as well.
Waiters, whom the Cavaliers drafted with the No. 4 pick in 2012, has a contentious relationship with several teammates, including star point guard Kyrie Irving, and sources say he is open to being traded. In fact, although Waiters has not demanded a trade, he brought up the subject in a three-hour meeting last week with coach Mike Brown and general manager Chris Grant, according to sources.
"It's just nonsense," Waiters said of the trade rumors following his season-high 24 points in the team's 95-84 loss to Miami. "There's been things thrown out there that haven't been true at all."
The Cavaliers are looking to shake things up after a 4-11 start. Part of their problem has been the dysfunction in their locker room. Waiters, a 6-foot-4 guard, got into an altercation with forward Tristan Thompson during a players-only meeting after a 29-point loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves on Nov. 13, sources said.
Sources described the following account:
Irving called the meeting after the game, and every player spoke. When Waiters was given the floor, he criticized Thompson and Irving, accusing them of playing "buddy ball" and often refusing to pass to him. Thompson took umbrage with Waiters' words and went back at him verbally. The two confronted each other, but teammates intervened before it could escalate into a fight.
However, Waiters and Irving are not close. Waiters believes the Cavaliers have a double standard when it comes to Irving, sources said. Waiters feels that while Irving is allowed to get away with loafing defensively, making turnovers and taking bad shots, he is taken out of games for such things. Waiters has shared his views with Brown and Grant.
Waiters is slumping after a promising rookie season -- both his scoring and shooting percentage are down.
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