Last season, the Cavaliers proved they are a hungry team in the NBA’s Eastern Conference. They finished 44-38 last season, earning the team a spot in the play-in tournament.
The team also thrived in this year’s draft, the Cavaliers had one first round pick and three second round picks. The team drafted Ochai Agbaji with the 14th pick, Khalifa Diop with the 39th pick, Isaiah Mobley with the 49th and Luke Travers with the 56th. Agbaji was a catalyst in leading his Jayhawks to a national championship and is a proven scorer, something the Cavaliers bench could benefit from. He played four games in the Las Vegas Summer League and averaged 15 points, 4.8 rebounds, 1.2 steals and shot 38% from three point range.
Both Khalifa Diop and Luka Trravers will spend the 2022-23 season developing overseas, but Isiah Mobley is currently signed to a two-way contract for this season. Much like his brother Evan Mobley, his speed and wingspan will bolster the Cavaliers defense.
The Cavaliers also made moves through free agency and utilizing trades as well. They picked up Ricky Rubio and Raul Neto this past season, as well as center Robin Lopez. Ricky Rubio probably won’t return to play until sometime in 2023 due to injury, but prior to that he was a solid veteran presence for this younger team. The same can be said for Robin Lopez, often a fan favorite. Lopez joins a frontcourt of Jarett Allen, Evan Mobley and Kevin Love.
Looking ahead to the 2022-23 season, the Cavaliers are going to be a solid contender. Their frontcourt alone epitomizes the saying “defense wins championships.” Their depth at the center position is full of tall defenders with massive wingspans. On top of that, Jarett Allen and Darius Garland are both coming back from a year in which they were both all stars and Evan Mobley looks primed to potentially make his first All-Star appearance.
This is also without mentioning that the organization still has Lauri Markkenen, Caris Levert and Isaac Okoro on the roster. Isaac Okoro has potential to win Sixth-Man of the Year honors depending on how well the team does this year and how he can contribute.
Furthermore, for everyone that views this team as an underdog, the Atlanta Hawks went on a run to the Eastern Conference Finals and that was before adding Dejounte Murray to the squad. Nevertheless, the Cavaliers will be scary this upcoming season.