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Cavs will pursue Anthony Parker in free agency

By Jason Lloyd Published: December 1, 2011

The Cavaliers got back to work on Thursday. Sort of.

Ramon Sessions, Anderson Varejao, Samardo Samuels and Manny Harris returned to the practice court at Cleveland Clinic Courts on Thursday, the first day facilities were open to NBA players. They were not allowed to have contact with the coaching staff or front office and they did not speak to reporters.

Cavs General Manager Chris Grant did and made it clear where the Cavs' priority lies in terms of free agency.

"We absolutely want Anthony Parker back," Grant said. "We think he's fantastic, thought he played great last year and is an even better leader for us. He's just one of those people we feel great about."

Parker is 36 and averaged 8.3 points per game last season, but the Cavs love the steady hand he brings as a veteran in the locker room. Grant reached out to Parker's agent, Henry Thomas, on Wednesday -- the first day agents were allowed to contact GMs as the lockout reaches its final days. Aside from perhaps bringing Parker back, don't expect the Cavs to be very active in free agency. They have turned over a fair amount of the roster since the end of last season (Omri Casspi, Kyrie Irving, Tristan Thompson) and Grant wants to see what he has.

"If there are nice pieces that fit into our core of what we’re trying to do, we’ll be aggressive (in free agency)," Grant said. "If not, we’re perfectly happy where we are with this young core group have some time to play and grow together. We have to give these young guys a chance to work together."

Grant couldn't comment on particulars of the labor agreement, the trade exception or the amnesty clause because all are parts of ongoing negotiations. But the next week leading into camp is sure to be frenzied, as will the start of training camps and the official start of free agency, both of which occur on Dec. 9.

"We're excited," Grant said. "We're ready to go."

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