When the Cavs were 5-7 and playing in slow motion, many fans didn’t know what to think. Was this it? Is LeBron not able to carry a team anymore? Will this dynasty fall apart in year four?
Then, Arthur happened.
A classic cryptic LeBron James social media post that we have all grown accustom to. Since that post, the Cavs have won seven in a row and have propelled themselves to 3rd in the East instead of actually out of the playoffs. Obviously, seeding isn’t very important in the NBA, especially in November. However, it was not a good start to the season.
The Cavs are a pretty great team even without Isaiah Thomas, Derrick Rose, Tristan Thompson and Iman Shumpert (for some of the time). That’s 52.8 points a night wearing a suit on the sideline. So what James, Kevin Love and the Cavs are doing is actually quite remarkable with the bad luck to start the season.
Better to be hurt in November rather than May or June, right?
Just imagine the potential of this team with a full and healthy squad. Isaiah Thomas running the point and essentially replacing Kyrie Irving’s production. Tristan Thompson’s offensive rebounding and defense. Shumpert’s steals and contribution. The interest piece is Derrick Rose, who has left the Cavs to consider his future in basketball. While I hope he returns, I can see him retiring.
With IT2’s return imminent, Rose’s role on this team would be a smaller one, anyway. His departure doesn’t end the season by any means. Plus, we’ve seen a scrappy Jose Calderon step up and perform almost like a certain Matthew Dellavedova did. Against the Pistons, Calderon had 14 points on 4-5 shooting. He’s a vet that knows what he’s doing and isn’t going to screw up anything in crucial moments.
Kevin Love has remained healthy and is doing his thing giving the team 17.9 a night. I’ve loved the bounce in D Wade’s step since coming off the bench. Hopefully, the Cavs rest him enough so he’s ready for a playoff run. Kyle Korver has been dynamite from deep, per usual, shooting 44% from beyond the arc, which is insane. Jae Crowder has come over from Boston and fit his role as a corner shooter and defender nicely as well.
I look at the Cavs as baking a cake. You have your dry ingredients (healthy) and your wet ingredients (injured). Eventually, they will be combined together. It will be ugly at first, but once this squad clicks with a full-strength roster, they can truly accomplish anything as a smooth batter. Yes, Golden State is still amazing, but this Cavs team is a lot different than last year’s.
Here’s to a healthy recovery for everyone, no further injuries, proper rest and a magical run to yet another championship in Cleveland. It’s going to be a fun ride.
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