INDEPENDENCE — C.J. Miles broke the news last week on his Twitter account and the Cavaliers made the official announcement Wednesday: Cleveland has signed the veteran swingman to a contract.
Terms of the deal were not announced, but Miles, who could end up being the team’s starting small forward, is believed to have signed a two-year contract worth $4 million, with the second season reportedly being a team option.
The 6-foot-6, 222-pound Miles spent the first seven years of his pro career with the Utah Jazz after coming to the NBA straight out of Skyline High in Dallas.
The 25-year-old averaged 9.1 points, 2.1 rebounds and 1.2 assists in 20.5 minutes a game last season, when he appeared in 56 games and started 14. Miles’ best season was 2010-11 when he averaged 12.8 points, 3.3 rebounds and 1.7 assists, all career highs.
“C.J. brings solid NBA experience to the team, yet is still just entering his prime at 25,” Cavs general manager Chris Grant said in a news release. “His ability to play multiple positions adds depth and flexibility to our roster.”
With the Cavs having taken Syracuse shooting guard Dion Waiters with the fourth pick in the NBA Draft, the left-handed Miles figures to get most of his minutes at small forward, where he could start for coach Byron Scott.
Alonzo Gee, who ended last season as Cleveland’s starter, is a restricted free agent and has not been getting a ton of interest from teams around the league. If that doesn’t change, he will probably accept the $2.7 million qualifying offer the Cavs made to him in late June, then become an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season.
It is believed the Cavs still want to sign Gee to a multiyear deal, but adding Miles gives them the option of letting Gee walk if another team offers him an inflated contract.
The Cavs’ other small forward is Omri Casspi, who began last season as the starter but failed to produce on a consistent basis.
Whatever his role turns out to be in Cleveland, Miles was excited last week when he posted on Twitter, “I appreciate all this #Cavsnation love. I’m excited to help the city on and off the court.”
A bit of a streak shooter, Miles has put up some big numbers in the past. He scored 27 points off the bench against Houston last season and erupted for a career-high 40 against Minnesota in 2010-11.
Miles was taken by Utah with the fourth pick in the second round (34th overall) in the 2005 draft. He has career averages of 8.4 points, 2.2 rebounds and 1.3 assists in 389 games (159 starts) and has shot .419 from the field, .329 on 3-pointers and .787 at the line.
Contact Rick Noland at (330) 721-4061 or email@example.com.