|Joe Harris goes up for a shot against Florida State last season. Unlike his elevator experience, he ended up reaching his destination. (US Presswire)|
Teams that travel overseas have to contend with jet lag, questionable officiating and playing against much older foreign players. It gives them a chance to bond as they contend with adversity.
The Cavaliers played five games in seven days, winning two. They were the victims of a French scorekeeper that appeared to give the home team an extra two points.
The team also had some off-court adversity while they were in Paris. The players boarded an elevator at the Radisson hotel where they were staying, and even though they were one short of the listed capacity for the elevator, the 12 college basketball players were enough to cause it to grind to a halt.
Like so many undersized players who couldn't find a spot in the NBA Draft, the elevator was a “tweener,” getting stuck between floors.
“They're not ... normal people,” coach Tony Bennett said in a video of the incident that the school posted on its website Tuesday. “12 of them is the equivalent of -- I don't know -- 15 normal people.”
|The team waiting for rescue on the elevator. It was hot and there was a lot of yelling, players said. (VirginiaSportsTV.com)|
The video shows the players in high spirits as they wait to be rescued, but that wasn't always the case.
“Jontel (Evans) is always yelling and saying stuff, like when we're stretching,” junior guard Joe Harris said. “He was pretty good about the elevator breaking down, but guys were still telling him to shut up.
“Paul (Jesperson) was freaking out. You usually don't see him getting worked up. There were 12 of us in there, so it got pretty hot. They were passing us water down there. It was about 45 minutes. Other than being so hot, it really wasn't all that uncomfortable.”
It was just the first of what promises to be a season full of ups and downs for the young Cavaliers.
For more up-to-the-minute news and analysis from ACC bloggers Shawn Krest and Sean Bielawski, follow @CBSSportsACC.