The Cleveland Cavaliers are quietly doing their retooling for next NBA season although critics are not giving them much of a chance next season. Kevin Love and Tristan Thompson are still around although both could end up being shipped via trade to another team if the price is right. Hence, it is all about rebuilding for the former NBA champions on their young guns, namely Collin Sexton and Darius Garland.

Hence, it hardly comes as a surprise that the Cavs were not among the teams in the aggressive pursuit of the top names this NBA free agency. Rather, it appears they are aiming for some of the less-heralded players to comprise the team for the 2019-20 season. According to Amico Hoops, two players the Cavs are interested in are free agents Ben McLemore and Sindarius Thornwell.

Of the two, there is no question that McLemore rings a bell. The 26-year-old shooting guard was the 7th overall pick of the Sacramento Kings where his best year came during his sophomore season (2014-15). He would move to the Memphis Grizzlies, signing a multi-year contract in July 2017 that hardly helped his stock. He fractured his right foot in a pickup game in August 2017 and hardly got into the groove of things from there. He would be traded back to the Kings in 2018 before being eventually waived.

As for Thornwell, the 24-year-old hardly got his feet wet in the NBA after joining the Los Angeles Cllippers with a filled backcourt. He hardly established himself with the Clips after two seasons despite good credentials before the 2017 NBA Draft.

Should the Cavs come to terms with either or both players, the deals are not expected to be lucrative or long-term. The fact remains that the Cavs are trying to rebuild – meaning it won’t come as a surprise if they end up at the lower part of the Eastern Conference standings for the 2019-20 NBA season.

Barring any sudden trades on Cleveland’s end, Sexton and Garland are expected to be in the spotlight. In a previous post and when he visited the Philippines in May, Sexton said that he and the Cavs are hoping to make the playoffs at the least. But looking at how other NBA teams have gotten ultra-stronger, their chances of fulfilling that may have just gotten dimmer.

Ben McLemore Kansas
Kansas freshman Ben McLemore, middle, may slip out of the top three of the 2013 NBA Draft, with scouts possibly favoring Georgetown's Otto Porter. Reuters