10 and 20, that is the Cleveland Cavaliers record so far in their 2013-14 campaign. As we continually support the Cavs we can see our hopes and dreams of a playoff team disappear. The Cavaliers have been performing very badly on the road with a record of 2 and 13. At the start of the season their record at home was spectacular however it seems as though now they can never close on a win with the record of 8 and 7. The Cleveland Cavaliers seem to be struggling with things like leadership, finishing, and an identity crisis.

Kyrie Irving and the rest of the cavaliers are having trouble in the locker room, which leads to problems with on the court chemistry. Instead of playing as a team they seem to play for themselves only. This has led to many team members being unhappy with their roles such as Dion Waiters and Andrew Bynum. It has also lead to stagnant offense in which Kyrie tries to play one on five instead of trying to generate movement to find an open look either for himself or a teammate. This was the problem that led to the locker room blowup between Dion Waiters, Kyrie Irving, and Tristan Thompson after a 4 and 11 start. Unfortunately, the Cavs staff and players are still struggling, which is reflected by their 10 and 20 record.

Leadership is also a problem with the Cleveland Cavaliers. The Cavaliers decided to have a switch in the coaching staff this year. The team went from Byron Scott as head coach to Mike Brown who was our head coach when LeBron James played on the team. Mike Brown’s emphasis when he coaches is primarily on defense, which leaves a deficit when it comes to the Cavs offense. This type of coaching may be one of the reasons that the Cavs seem unable to close out on wins in overtime as well as 4th quarters. The Cavs have lost their last 3 games by no more than 4 points and offense becoming a more important part of coaching the team may help.

The Cavs are also in the middle of an identity crisis. Their style of play is very questionable. At times they play fast basketball and others times they play slow. The team itself has no true flow. Teams that have had much success lately like the Miami Heat and San Antonio Spurs have an identity and they play a certain way. The Miami Heat like to play fast basketball, they push the ball up the court, shoot three-pointers, and create turnovers. The San Antonio Spurs play a slower type of basketball and play through Tim Duncan, their center and power-forward. The two teams have an identity that helps them be a team that works together and can get many wins throughout their season and make it to the playoffs for their conference. When the Cleveland Cavaliers solve their identity crisis and decide who they want to be as a team they will become a better team as a whole and that may lead them to the playoffs.

One thing the Cleveland Cavaliers are doing right is that they play the tough competition very well. This type of playing resulted in wins against the Chicago Bulls and the Los Angeles Clippers. There is one downside to this playing and that is the fact that the Cavs tend to overlook the teams that they should be able to beat which leads to bad loses. The Cavaliers need to continue to play up to the tough competition but they cannot play down to the level of the teams that are worse. This will only lead to disaster for the Cavaliers.

The Cavaliers with a record of 10 and 20 have had a rough beginning of the season. The only way to increase the winning side of that record is to focus on offense and determining an identity as a team. It is a lot of work but with the determination and support of the fans the Cavs can do it. They may even be able to make it to the playoffs and become a team that the fans want to represent our great city of Cleveland.

-Dal Oprian

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