Smith expected to become free agent.
The Cleveland Cavaliers are reportedly expected to waive veteran shooting guard JR Smith by day's end, "barring a last-minute trade," according to The Athletic's Joe Vardon. Last month the Cavs pushed Smith's guarantee date back from June 30 to July 15 in hopes that they'd be able to trade him, but it seems increasingly unlikely they'll find a suitor.
The team will therefore waive and stretch Smith’s $4.3 million guaranteed over the next three years, which works out to a $1,466,667 cap hit in each season.
According to Cleveland.com, the Cavs were hoping to get a future first-round pick in exchange for Smith, and they had even offered him to the Golden State Warriors for Andre Iguodala.
Per Cleveland.com's Chris Fedor:
"In numerous trade conversations, the Cavs were seeking a future first-round pick in return for Smith’s partial non-guaranteed deal, even willing to take on two-plus years of bad money to make that happen. But it had to be a valuable pick worth the penalties that come with being a tax team and they didn’t want to force a bad deal for the sake of action."
"In the early stages of free agency, the Cavs offered Smith to Golden State for Andre Iguodala, sources say, believing they made a better offer than the one the Warriors took from Memphis. The Cavs even offered lighter protections on a future first-round pick."
Smith, who will turn 34 before the start of next season, only appeared in 11 games for the Cavs last season, averaging just 6.7 points per game in a little over 20 minutes of action.