Avery Bradley is a Perfect Fit for the Cavs

Detroit Pistons shooting guard Avery Bradley is on the trading block after an unimpressive start on his new team. Cavs fans should remember him well when he was a member of the Boston Celtics, where he played seven seasons and appeared in 39 playoff games, nine of which came against Cleveland. Bradley isn’t an all-star player, nor is he someone who can single-handedly take over a game, but when he’s on the floor, we know what to expect. If Bradley were in a Cavs uniform, I would expect he be a great fit.

Offensively, Bradley isn’t an incredible shooter, but he can’t be left open. Bradley is a 36.8% career three-point shooter and is coming off a 39% success rate last season and currently is shooting 38.1% from deep. For a shooting guard who is considered to be on the short end (he stands at only 6’2”), it is impressive that he has maintained a 15 ppg average over his past five seasons. These stats suggest that he is exceptional in finding the right shot at the right time and would work very well in a complex, ball-moving offense. While the Cavs show glimpses of iso-only offense at times, it is clear that the Cavs can have premier ball movement when they choose to and Bradley would take advantage of that.

Avery Bradley’s defensive stats this season look mediocre at best; however, Bradley remains an elite defender. If you have watched enough games where Bradley has played, you may have noticed the commentators making remarks on Bradley’s one-on-one defense or his ability to break down the opposing team’s plays. Both of these traits prove to be essential in a wing defender and Bradley has earned the respect of many players around the league. Even LeBron praised Bradley in a 2012 interview with WEEI.com when he said Bradley was “one of the best” [as a defender].

Bradley’s height plays a role in his defense as well. In a possible rematch with Golden State, Bradley may struggle in guarding 6’7” Klay Thompson the whole game, but he could be a secret weapon against Steph Curry and may even get in his head. This leaves one possible issue; what would we do with Derrick Rose or Isaiah Thomas? I believe the Cavs would need to move one of these guys in a deal for Bradley in order to accommodate for the height we would lose in almost every other possible player we could trade. The Cavs might want to wait a few more games to see which they are willing to give up for Bradley.

In general, I think Bradley would fill an incredible hole that the Cavs have on defense, particularly at the guard spot. Bradley and Dwyane Wade as a 1-2 punch at guard would be a smart veteran pairing with a competent offense, but also an incredible defense. This team could dramatically change their ways with a guy like Bradley on the floor, so let’s see if the Cavs pursue over the next few days.

Image: ESPN

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