Cavs Are a Lot Younger, More Athletic, But Are They Better?
A few days ago, I wrote an article questioning if I would trade LeBron if he didn’t have a no-trade clause to his contract. In return, LeBron dropped 37 points on (16-22 shooting, 5-7 three), 15 assists and 10 boards including a game-winner over the Timberwolves in OT. That was the last shot that six Cavaliers would witness in a Cleveland uniform.
GM Koby Altman was a busy guy throughout the final day before the trade deadline. He acquired Rodney Hood and George Hill from Utah as well as Jordan Clarkson and Larry Nance Jr. from the Lakers. Gone are Isaiah Thomas, Channing Frye, Iman Shumpert, Jae Crowder, Derrick Rose and Dwyane Wade.
I have always been a strong opposer of Isaiah Thomas and he turned out to be a disaster. I’m sad to see Channing go because he was a good locker room guy. Jae Crowder never really found his role on this team. Derrick Rose has his own issues to take care of and D Wade’s playing time would be shortened with the addition of Clarkson and Cedi Osman’s emergence.
Frankly, I would’ve liked to have received a player in return for D Wade.
The Cavs got a lot better by who they got rid of more than who they received in return. None of these guys are stars by any means, Hood being the best of them, averaging 16.8 points a game. Hill is a solid point guard. Nance and Clarkson will both have to find a role on this team or they could turn out to be Jae Crowder 2.0’s.
My fear is how will these new guys do in the playoffs and especially if we were to face the Warriors again in the finals. Yes, the Cavs got better, but by just how much? I think very little. At least, not enough to beat Golden State. We are still lacking the interior defender that this team needs. It could come through a buyout, though.
It will be very interesting to see how this team gels together and then how they will adjust when Kevin Love comes back. Will that team be ready for a postseason run? That remains to be seen.
Cavs GM Koby Altman did what he could with the assets he had. He got rid of the toxic locker room players, made the team younger and proved to LeBron that he cares about winning just as much as former GM David Griffin did. That’ll be important this summer when trying to retain The King.
Last but definitely not least, the team kept the Brooklyn pick. The Nets are the 7th-worst currently, but the bottom of the league is very scrunched up. Saving this pick could be the best move of all.
Did the Cavs improve? Yes. By how much? Only a little.