Since the start of 2018, the Cavs have been nothing short of terrible, losing seven of 10 games so far this year and two of those wins came against the 14-33 Orlando Magic. Everything that could go wrong for the Cavs has, from giving up giving up a season-high 148 points to the Thunder to blowing a 22-point lead to the Pacers. It’s now to the point where the Cavs are having full organization meetings to air out their grievances and blame Kevin Love. However, after a 12-point loss to the Kawhi Leonard-less Spurs, it would appear changes are finally being made as head coach Ty Lue made it clear he will make lineup changes for the upcoming game against the Pacers on Friday.
Tyronn Lue vows to make lineup change after Cleveland Cavaliers’ latest loss
— NBA.com (@NBAcom) January 24, 2018
This is something that fans have been demanding for a while as the current Cavs starting five of Isaiah Thomas, JR Smith, Jae Crowder, LeBron James and Kevin Love just isn’t cutting it. Now granted, Thomas has only played in eight games so far since joining the Cavs and it will take time for him to get used to his new team; other players like Smith and Crowder have no business still starting. This morning, Smith even made it clear that he is no longer opposed to a bench role on the team, unlike at the start of this season.
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) January 24, 2018
Smith and Crowder are both having downright awful seasons. Smith is only averaging 7.4 points per game this season, his lowest since joining the Cavs in January of 2015. While Crowder has taken major steps back offensively after improving his game the last two seasons in Boston. Crowder is averaging just 8.7 points per game on 41% shooting, both his lowest over the last three seasons. While Crowder was brought to Cleveland more for defense than offense both have been incredibly underwhelming. Both have been detrimental to the Cavs this season on both sides of the ball and need to be taken out of the starting five.
There are two potential lineup changes that I think would be much better for the Cavs to use moving forward the first being Thomas, Dwyane Wade, James, Jeff Green and Love. Wade and Green have both been fantastic on the Cavs bench and switching them to starting five would help bring energy to the team that they have desperately need. Another potential lineup would be Thomas, Wade, James, Love and Tristan Thompson. I feel this lineup helpful specifically to get guys like Love and James back to their original positions and more comfortable on the court. Now, while Thompson hasn’t been great this season by any means, he’s still solid defensively and more minutes for him could help the Cavs defend the paint more efficiently.
Lue hasn’t said much about these new lineups, aside from that the Cavs will have them. However, whatever Lue does we can all just hope that some new lineup changes can get the Cavs back to playing like the team we all remember they can be.
Image courtesy of Sports Illustrated
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