ESPN’s Brian Windhorst and Adrian Wojnarowski reported Thursday that the Cleveland Cavaliers and point guard Derrick Rose are in “serious” talks regarding a one-year contract.
Rose is among the top players remaining in free agency after spending the 2016-17 season with the New York Knicks.
Per Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today, Cleveland could use a portion of the taxpayer mid-level exception or sign Rose to the veteran’s minimum.
Zillgitt added that the maximum amount the Cavaliers could pay Rose in 2017-18 is $2.5 million.
Last season was Rose’s best from a statistical perspective since 2011-12, as he averaged 18.0 points, 4.4 assists and 3.8 rebounds per game.
He also shot 47.1 percent from the floor, which was his best mark since 2009-10.
Rose’s first eight years in the NBA were spent with the Chicago Bulls, and he experienced a great deal of success, reaching three All-Star Games and being named the 2011 NBA MVP.
Injuries severely limited his availability and effectiveness, however, which led to the Bulls deciding to part ways with him.
The 28-year-old veteran is no longer anything close to an MVP-caliber player, but he could represent a major upgrade for the Cavs.
Cleveland acquired Deron Williams as a backup point guard last season, and the results were mixed. He is currently a free agent, which could pave the way for Rose.
Since Kyrie Irving isn’t a traditional point guard, Rose could even play alongside Irving for long stretches, giving Cleveland a formidable starting lineup consisting of Rose, Irving, LeBron James, Kevin Love and Tristan Thompson.
Improvements have been difficult to come by for the Cavaliers this offseason due to their salary cap situation and turmoil in the front office, but Rose would be huge for a backcourt that has plenty of question marks aside from Irving.