Blog Entry

Preseason Primers: Cavaliers

Posted on: September 21, 2010 3:13 pm
Edited on: September 21, 2010 3:28 pm

The misnomer about LeBron James leaving Cleveland is that people thought fans in Northeast Ohio were mad at him for leaving. Wrong. They were mad at him for the way he left. So with the first post-LeBron training camp around the corner, the Cavs’ brass are hoping the fan base is as realistic and patient as they will be as they recover from the Decision and all that it wrought. Internally, the Cavs have moved on. They have a new coach with rebuilding experience (Byron Scott) and a new front-office team with a lot of promise and assets at their disposal (GM Chris Grant and VP of basketball ops David Griffin).

Personnel-wise, no one inside the organization is putting any limits on what this team can do. The bad: They lost LeBron, and simply won’t recover in the short term. The good: They still believe they have the defensive foundation that Mike Brown built, along with enough shooters (Anthony Parker, Mo Williams, Daniel Gibson), former All-Stars (Antawn Jamison) and defensive dynamos (Varejao) to be competitive until the opportunity to pounce on a major personnel upgrade presents itself. Until then, here’s your preseason primer on the Cavs without you-know-who:

Training camp site: Independence, Ohio

Training camp starts: Sept. 28

Key additions: Ramon Sessions (trade), Ryan Hollins (trade), Joey Graham (free agent), Christian Eyenga (draft)

Key subtractions: Shaquille O’Neal (free agent), Delonte West (trade), Zydrunas Ilgauskas (free agent), Sebastian Telfair (trade), plus franchise identity, millions in ticket/merchandise sales, and the very soul of a tortured, doomed sports populace (i.e. some guy named ... oh, never mind).

Likely starting lineup: Williams, PG; Parker, SG; Joey Graham, SF; Jamison, PF; Anderson Varejao, C.

Player to watch: J.J. Hickson. He’s the guy the Cavs refused to give up in any trade scenario for Jamison or Amar’e Stoudemire. With you-know-who out of the picture, Hickson should benefit from increased touches and has a chance to be a bright spot as the otherwise dismal post-you-know-who era begins.

Chemistry check: Williams and Jamison both thought they were coming to Cleveland to win titles with you-know-who. Well, with you-know-who having taken his you-know-whats to South Beach, it will be interesting to watch how these veterans approach a daunting rebuilding project.

Camp battles: Graham, Jamario Moon and Jawad Williams will have a lively competition to replace you-know-who at small forward.

Biggest strength: If you take the glass-half-full approach, this is actually the ideal opportunity for Scott to re-establish a winning culture and instill his usual combination of defense, toughness, up-tempo offense and conditioning without getting pushback from cranky veterans who have grown tired of him. (That comes later.) Also, as difficult as this is for Cavs fans to swallow, the Cavs acquired some very useful assets in the sign-and-trade transaction that ultimately sent you-know-you to Miami. With multiple future first- and second-round picks, expiring contracts and a $14.5 million trade exception, the Cavs are positioned nicely when the right opportunity presents itself. They could’ve burned cap space this summer on average players as an emotional reaction to you-know-who’s departure. But Grant doesn’t – and won’t – operate that way. He will be unemotional and methodical, which is how Cavs fans should want him to be. The addition of Griffin, the former Suns executive, gives Cleveland a keen and connected personnel man to team with Grant; it has the makings of one of the finest front-office tandems in the league.

Glaring weakness: Who’s going to score, defend, perform chase-down blocks, sell tickets, toss talc, pose for idiotic pregame mock celebratory productions, star in hour-long reality TV shows stabbing his hometown in the back, and generally just save the world? Someday, someone besides you-know-who.


Since: Apr 23, 2010
Posted on: October 6, 2010 7:29 am

Preseason Primers: Cavaliers

It is not about Lebron leaving to win rings its the way he did it. You don't go on National TV and tell the city that supported you to fuck themselves. Bosh didn't even do that. Makes Lebron worse to throw out the race card. Most of Cleveland is black and most of Cleveland hates Lebron.

Since: Sep 27, 2010
Posted on: September 27, 2010 5:13 pm

Preseason Primers: Cavaliers

This sounds realistic. Court 'o thugs? Court o' Fags?

Since: Sep 22, 2010
Posted on: September 22, 2010 11:42 pm

Preseason Primers: Cavaliers

I have been a Cavs fan for over 30 years and I refuse to allow one man who hates the Cavs, its organization and the City of Cleveland to prevent me from rooting for my Cavs.  I would not take Lebron back even if he came back begging, dancing on one leg and holding his mother up on the arm with the bad elbow - no way, no how because I don't want anyone playing here when they don't want to be here.  I will continue to support the Cavs as I have in the past.  I look forward to this season as I watch our Cavs grow and compete this year.  Go Cavs!

Since: Nov 12, 2006
Posted on: September 22, 2010 6:40 pm

Preseason Primers: Cavaliers

Funny.  Players get crucified for not going after a ring, and in James' case he gets crucified FOR going after a ring.  The double-standard always works for the jilted lover.

The Cavs are not good.  They have a guard who has to dominate the ball to have success, is a mediocre shooter, and is a reluctant passer.  They have poor Antwan Jamison, a very solid player with no supporting case.  After that the cupboard's pretty bare offensively.  Defensively, they'll compete, but you can only win so many 89-85 games in an NBA season.  Not good at all.

Since: Jul 30, 2007
Posted on: September 22, 2010 6:34 pm

Preseason Primers: Cavaliers

Nobody seems to get the real reason fans were mad about James leaving. In the last 15 years we have seen alot of talent leave Cleveland. Belle, Manny, Thome, Millwood, Boozer, CC, Cliff Lee, and probably others. In all these situations we lost these guys basically because the system was against us or the owner couldn't pay what others could. In other words it was all about the money. But with James the system was in our favor. No one in the NBA could pay James more han the Cavs could. And the owner was in our favor. Gilbert would pay whatever he needed to to keep James here. All of a sudden it was all not about the money. Even with the system and the owner in our favor the Cavs couldn't keep James here. And that is really why fans were so mad at James leaving.

Since: Apr 13, 2009
Posted on: September 22, 2010 3:15 pm

Preseason Primers: Cavaliers

Cavs will be the 7 or 8th seed in the playoffs, you watch, just with the team they have. They will be competing against Milwaukee and Detroit for these 2 spots. Remember, I didnt go to the LeBitch game, I went to the Cavs game.

It make me laugh all of these people dissing Cleveland. We are tradition, We are History, and we do have the greatest fans in all the land. 

LePippens team is good but I dont think match up well with Orlando, Boston, Bulls, and the New Jersey Nets should they get Carmello.

Since: Sep 5, 2006
Posted on: September 22, 2010 1:54 pm

Preseason Primers: Cavaliers

Cavs clearly have one of the 2 or 3 worst rosters in the league. Good news is they will get a top 5 pick after winning around 20 games. Only realistic hope now is a stud draft pick. Harrison Barnes would be nice!

Since: Mar 12, 2007
Posted on: September 22, 2010 1:01 pm

Preseason Primers: Cavaliers

The Cavs were 3-12 without LBJ last year and they were resting many of their starters.  The year the Cavs had their best record (2009)was the year that LBJ played the least amount of minutes.  Windhurt's staring lineup is Mo, Sessions, Williams, Hickson and Verajo.  Assuming that is the starting line-up, then their second unit would include Jamison, AP, and Moon.  They have some depth. They will run more and have more ball movement.  If they don't win at least 30 games, I will be shocked.  I remember how bad the Cavs were during LBJ's first two years on the league (they didn't make the playoffs).  It wasn't all LBJ. 

Since: Jul 15, 2009
Posted on: September 22, 2010 12:10 pm

Preseason Primers: Cavaliers

Cleveland has a hockey team in the AHL that averages around 6000 per game. While I wish we had a NHL team this area would WOULD never support it.  I am also from Brook Park.

Since: Sep 11, 2006
Posted on: September 22, 2010 11:21 am

Preseason Primers: Cavaliers

Cleveland should be better than the Raptors.  But better than the Bucks and Knicks???  You may want to check the rosters first there buddy.....  Milwaukee was a 5 seed last season, and upgraded their roster.  Cleveland didn't upgrade in any way, lost Delonte, Shaq, Z, Lebron, pretty much every leader they had (no, I'm not considering Delonte a leader).  The Knicks will be much better this season, Amare is an all star, and Anthony Randolph is a budding star...  Cavs fans are in denial, the team is about to be blown up even more. 

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