Andrew Bogut could be joining the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Andrew Bogut could be joining the Cleveland Cavaliers. LM Otero

What next for Boomers star Bogut?

BASKETBALL: Australian great Andrew Bogut could become a Cleveland Cavalier, partnering with LeBron James and the 2016 defending NBA champions.

Joe Vardon, who covers the Cavs for and the Plain Dealer newspaper in Cleveland, answers the five burning questions arising from Bogut's potential move to Ohio.

1) What needs to happen to get Bogut to Cleveland?

The Philadelphia 76ers need to place him on waivers by the end of the day March 1, so he is eligible to play in the postseason.

The Sixers are said to be negotiating a buyout of Bogut's contract, which typically means the player would take less than he's owed.

Philly is on the hook of whatever is left from the $11 million deal Bogut signed in the off-season with Dallas.

If Bogut hits the waiver wire by March 1 - either through a buyout or a simple release - then teams would have 48 hours to claim him.

If no team does, Bogut would be a free agent and could choose to sign with anyone, including the Cavs.

2) What role would he fill?

Bogut would ostensibly be Cleveland's fourth big man, behind Kevin Love, Tristan Thompson, and Channing Frye.

For my Aussie friends screaming about Bogut compared with Frye, understand that coach Tyronn Lue wants bigs off the bench to shoot threes.

That's Frye.

However, Love is out for weeks after knee surgery, so Bogut could conceivably start at centre and Thompson could slide over to power forward in March with Love out.

3) How will a strong personality like Bogut's work alongside the likes of LeBron?

No personality is larger than LeBron's.

Every player who comes to Cleveland since LeBron returned in 2014 understands who's in charge and responds accordingly. J.R. Smith is a prime example.

Kyle Korver, traded to the Cavs in January, told Deron Williams, who will sign with Cleveland Monday, that Williams would love it here.

Same goes for Bogut.

4) What would his addition mean to Cavs title chances?

It's hard to say how much Bogut would play in a Finals match with the Warriors.

Then again, Golden State was never the same when Bogut injured his knee against the Cavs in June.

Let's put it this way, the Cavs are better with Bogut than without him.

5) What, if any, are the main obstacles in getting him to Cleveland?

This is the most important question as far as the Cavs and Bogut's bank account are concerned.

The Cavs are beyond maxed out when it comes to the salary cap. The best they can offer him is a prorated version of the veteran's minimum $US1.55 million.

It's going to be roughly $US500,000 for Bogut if he chooses the Cavs.

The Houston Rockets, meanwhile have $US3.5 million in cap space. They could give it all to Bogut.

But the Rockets are going to lose to the Warriors in the Western Conference playoffs, with or without Bogut.

The Cavs might beat the Warriors in the Finals.

That's where Bogut wants to be, I think.

Of course, all of this is moot until the Sixers waive him. That will probably happen, but there's a chance it doesn't.

News Corp Australia

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