Cavs Extend Qualifying Offers To Isaac Okoro, Emoni Bates

The Cavaliers are extending qualifying offers to wing Isaac Okoro and forward Emoni Bates, making both players restricted free agents, per Chris Fedor of Okoro, Cleveland Cavaliers, NBA Rumors

The moves are viewed as formalities and give the Cavs the right to match potential contract offers from other teams. 

That said, there is at least a little doubt about the futures of both in Cleveland. While the Cavs want to keep both, as with most things, the dollars will have to make sense.

Okoro, 23, was the No. 5 overall pick in the 2020 NBA Draft and is coming off a career season in which he averaged 9.4 points, 3.0 rebounds, 1.9 assists and 0.8 steals, shooting 49.0% from the field and a career-high 39.1% on 3-pointers. He is widely considered the Cavs’ best wing defender. He earned $8.9 million last season.

The Indiana Pacers and Los Angeles Lakers are two rival teams with supposed interest in Okoro.

Bates, 20, was the No. 49 overall pick in 2023 and appeared in just 15 games with the Cavaliers as a rookie last season, averaging 2.7 points on around 30% shooting, both from the field and on threes.

He signed a two-way contract last July and spent most of his time with the Cleveland Charge. In the G League, Bates averaged 21.7 points and 5.6 rebounds, shooting 38.7% from the floor and 34.6% on threes. The fact the Cavs extended a qualifying offer makes you think they want to see more and continue to try to develop Bates, one of the top players in his high school class.

The Cavaliers have already made a few changes, hiring coach Kenny Atkinson to replace JB Bickerstaff, and selecting wing Jaylon Tyson with their No. 20 overall draft pick.

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