The Cavaliers learned how important Jarrett Allen was their post-season hopes when the All-Star center broke his left middle finger and missed 19 games.
They brought in an experienced backup with play-off experience for All on Friday, with a league source confirming that center Robin Lopez had agreed to a one-year minimum contract for veterans.
Lopez, 34, will play for his ninth NBA team, with previous stints in Phoenix, New Orleans, Portland, the New York Knicks, Chicago, Milwaukee, Washington and Orlando.
Last season for the Magic, Lopez appeared in 36 games (nine starts) and averaged 7.1 points, 3.5 rebounds, 1.5 assists and 0.5 blocks in 17 minutes, hitting .553 from the field and .593 from the field. shot the free-throw line.
In his 14-year career, Lopez played in 939 games (603 starts) and averaged 8.7 points, 4.9 rebounds and 0.8 assists.
He has made it to the playoffs in six of those seasons, appearing in seven series, hitting a career average of 8.4 points, 5.6 rebounds, and 5.6 rebounds in 23.4 minutes of 36 games. His most recent appearance in the playoffs was with the Wizards in 2021.
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Lopez, 7-foot-1 and 281 pounds, will give the Cavs six 7-footers if 6-11 Allen is included. They also have attacker Lauri Markkanen (7-0), center/striker Evan Mobley (7-0), center Moses Brown (7-2) and second round draft pick Khalifa Diop (7-1), who will play in Spain next season. The Cavs found success with their three-man tall-ball line-up last season before injuries intervened.
Earlier in the day, the Cavs agreed to a three-year deal with backup point guard Ricky Rubio† Free agency opens on Thursday at 6 p.m., but the signings can’t become official until Wednesday.
Cleveland Cavaliers adds backup point guard Raul Neto. please
In case Rubio isn’t ready to start the season after that tore his left ACL on December 28, the Cavs found another backup for All Star Point Guard Darius Garland, agreed with Raul Neto on a minimum one-year contract for veterans, a league source confirmed.
Neto, 30, 6-1 and 180 pounds, has spent seven years in the competition, the previous two with the Washington Wizards. In 2020-21, he recorded career highs in points (8.7), rebounds (2.4), field goal percentage (0.468) and minutes (21.9).
Last season, Neto played in 70 games (19 starts) and averaged 7.5 points, 1.9 rebounds, 3.1 assists and shot .463 from the field, .292 from long range, in 19.6 minutes. A second round pick of the Atlanta Hawks in 2013, Neto has career averages of 6.0 points, 1.6 rebounds and 2.2 assists in 16.2 minutes from 387 games (98 starts).
Neto also played for the Utah Jazz and Philadelphia 76ers. Neto spent 2015-19 at the Jazz, where Cavs assistant Antonio Lang was an assistant coach.
Three draft picks on Cleveland Cavaliers Summer League selection
Draft picks Ochai Agbajic (Kansas), Isaiah Mobley (USC) and Luke Travers (Perth Wildcats) head the Cavs’ 13-man Summer League roster that will compete in Las Vegas July 7-17. The group will train in Cleveland from July 2-6 before departing.
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Also joining guards RJ Nembhard (TCU, Cavs), Ashton Hagans (Kentucky, Raptors 905) and Amauri Hardy (Oregon, G League Ignite), forwards Josh Hall (Moravian Prep, Raptors 905), Aaron Henry (Michigan State, G League Delaware Blue Coats), Malik Osborne (Florida State), Jamorko Pickett (Georgetown, Detroit Pistons) and Cam Young (Quinnipiac, Cleveland Charge) and center/striker Nate Reuvers (Wisconsin, KK Cibona) and Amar Sylla (Real Madrid, BC Nevezis) ).
Mike Gerrity will serve as head coach, with Antonio Lang, JJ Outlaw and Dan Geriot as assistants.
The Cavs will play San Antonio on July 8 (5:00 PM, NBA TV), Denver on July 10 (7:00 PM, ESPNU), Charlotte on July 13 (5:00 PM, ESPNU), and Detroit on July 14 ( 5:30 p.m., NBA TV).
This article originally appeared on Akron Beacon Journal: Robin Lopez agrees to contract with Cleveland Cavaliers