Author Archive

The Point Four-ward: What Is And What Should Never Be

Wednesday, March 25th, 2015

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Four points I’m thinking about the Cleveland Cavaliers…

1.) Not long after Steve Nash announced his retirement last week, this story broke: had Nash asked for a buyout from the Lakers around the trade deadline, the Cavs had interest in bringing the 18-year vet on board to spell Kyrie Irving for limited minutes. The move made some sense because a.) LeBron James has always been a big Nash fan b.) both Cavs GM David Griffin and Director of Player Administration Raja Bell are close with Nash from their time together with the Phoenix Suns and c.) the Cavs, at least at the time they were considering this move, were looking to shore up their backup point guard spot.

Nash, however, chose to stay a Laker, the organization with which he wanted to end his career. And, really, you have to wonder if Nash would have been able to give the Cavs even the 10-15 minutes a night they were looking for, as he has not played in a game all season and has only played 65 games for the Lakers since they acquired him prior to the 2012-13 season.

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The Point Four-ward: More Rest For The Wicked?

Wednesday, March 18th, 2015

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Four points I’m thinking about the Cleveland Cavaliers…

1.) Count me among those who were actually surprised to see LeBron James suited up for Monday night’s game against the Miami Heat. After tweaking his knee in Sunday’s game against Orlando, James, who has spoken publicly of his desire to get some more rest before the playoffs start, chose to stay in for this road contest against his former team (and, likely, because of that).

After a couple of months in which James has sat out the occasional game on occasion (most recently, at home against Portland and on the road against Indiana) in order to give his body a couple more days to get right, James played, only to aggravate a wrist injury (in a collision with Hassan Whiteside) for his troubles.

Cavs head coach David Blatt has stated his desire for the Cavs to hold onto the second seed in the East going into the playoffs, so it’s unlikely that James will take off as lengthy a stretch as he did in December into January. Especially with the team resting Kevin Love, the Cavs need James if they are to win enough games to give Number 23 a prolonged rest.

As of now, Love is expected to play tonight against the Brooklyn Nets, though nothing definite has been announced.

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Fantasy Notebook: Playoff Time!

Monday, March 16th, 2015

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It’s been a long, punishing regular season here at Cavs: The Fantasy League.

No one’s body is feeling right. Everyone could use some rest, some time off… a two-week lay-off and a trip to Miami, say… but that ain’t gonna happen. Not here, anyway. CtFL is about fictitious balling and fictitious balling is what this collection of true competitors will continue to do.

It’s winning time, folks.

Before we get to a preview of this week’s match-ups — with the 1-4 seeds receiving first round byes — let’s hand out some of the regular season hardware.

The regular season’s best record — and the team that topped the Gilberts Division at 153-91-3 — is owned by none other than Evil Genius!

Congratulations, EG. And, while it would be foolish to start your coronation before you’ve even tasted playoff action, I think we’ve all seen enough to lobby that you drop the Evil for the more fitting suggestion in the song below:

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Recap: Cavs 128, Spurs 125 OT (Or The Night Kyrie Irving Devoured The World)

Friday, March 13th, 2015

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Okay…

I want to be clear about one thing: this recap won’t even come close to doing this game justice.

It just won’t. I apologize, but that’s just the way it goes. The best recap, CtB readers, was given by you and you can take a look back on it by scrolling through the unspooling of emotions (and the over 700 comments) that make up our Live Thread.

But, this game does deserve some recapping and I will happily oblige.

The Cavs and the Spurs played a game for the ages on Thursday night. With the Cavs down by six with 33 seconds remaining, Kyrie Irving hit two threes to bring the wine and gold even at the end of regulation, including a ridiculous heave as time expired to force the OT. Irving finished with 57 points, the most by any player this season, including going a perfect 7-7 from deep and 10-10 from the free throw line.

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Live Thread: Cavaliers at Spurs

Thursday, March 12th, 2015

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The wine and gold visit San Antonio, looking to follow up on an impressive win Tuesday night in Dallas and push their record to 2-0 on their current four game road trip.

There’s never any shortage of intrigue when a LeBron James-led team faces the Spurs. Whether you’re flashing all the way back to the 2007 Finals or have more recent memories — the Ray Allen shot, the Spurs dissection of the Miami Heat in last year’s Finals, Kawhi vs LeBron — this is a match-up with some meat on its bones; one that might be a bit more than just “the next game” for the Cavs star forward. Even with James’ notoriously short memory, he only needs to look back to November 19, 2014, to when these two teams met in Cleveland, to find some extra motivation. That game ended with James dribbling the ball off his foot in the final seconds before he could even attempt a shot and the Cavs fell to the Spurs 92-90.

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The Point Four-ward: Just The Most Recent One

Thursday, March 12th, 2015

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Four points I’m thinking about the Cleveland Cavaliers…

1.) Professional athletes have a fickle relationship with the term “statement game.” They don’t like it.

Well, that is, they don’t like it unless they do.

Most of the time, players will give statements like this one by LeBron James following the Cavs 127-94 victory over the Dallas Mavericks:

“It’s just the most recent [game]. Obviously, we played a great game. The best thing about tonight is we played a complete, 48-minute game. We pushed the tempo, we shared the ball, we defended, it was a great game for us.”

Just the most recent game.

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The Point Four-ward: MVP! MVP?

Wednesday, March 4th, 2015

First, if you haven’t read David’s excellent recap of last night’s win over the Celtics, do that first. Then, continue on to—

Four points I’m thinking about the Cleveland Cavaliers…

1.) All of the MVP talk that sprouted up around James following the Cavs brilliant performance against the Golden State Warriors last Thursday got me to thinking: what is the most number of games a player has missed in a season and still won the NBA’s Most Valuable Player award?

In two games this past week, James came out with guns blazing against the current MVP front-runners, James Harden of the Houston Rockets and Stephen Curry of the Warriors. Against the Warriors, James was magnificent, scoring 42 points on 15-25 shooting in what turned into a relatively easy victory against the team with (at the time) the league’s best record. Against Houston, James shot poorly (15-25 from the floor, 3-11 from the free throw line) but played as spirited and springy on defense as he has in a very long time. Regardless of how it ended, put his team in the position to win a game on the road against one of the league’s best teams without the help of the team’s all-star point guard.

Did James do enough in those two games to convince me that he’s still the game’s best player?

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The Point Four-ward: Empty the Bench

Wednesday, February 25th, 2015

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First off, if you haven’t read Ben’s excellent recap of the Cavs win in Detroit last night, please do yourself that favor. Then, it’s onto—

Four points I’m thinking about the Cleveland Cavaliers…

1.) On a recent Cavs telecast, I heard something that gave me pause. It concerned the overall league ranking for the Cavs bench. Anyone want to guess what it was?

Try 30th overall. That’s right, the Cavs bench is ranked dead last in the league averaging just 23.6 points per game according to hoopsstats.com. That is not something that inspires much confidence when talking about a team whose recent stretch of torrid play has vaulted it back in the thick of the championship contender conversation.

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The Point Four-ward: The Unofficial Stretch Run

Wednesday, February 18th, 2015

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Four points I’m thinking about the Cleveland Cavaliers as they pick back up after the All-Star break…

1.) You may have read the following comment from LeBron James following Sunday’s All-Star Game and raised your eyebrows just a bit.

Asked about his aggressive first quarter of the showcase game (in which he scored 15 points on 6-9 shooting in eight-plus minutes) James said:

It’s my obligation and my responsibility to go out there, if I’m feeling 80 percent or 85 percent or 90, to go out there and give my fans something. Give my fans what they wanted to see. And hopefully I did that.

The good news is that James viewed himself at somewhere between 80-90 percent on a day where he was still looking at several days off before picking the season back up again on Friday night. He also threw out those percentages after he’d scored 30 points on 11-21 shooting with five rebounds and seven assists in a performance that would have surely netted James the game MVP award had the East not fallen to the West 163-158.

So, 80-90 percent of LeBron James is still pretty darned good.

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The Point Four-ward: Fit In, Fit On, Fit Out

Wednesday, February 11th, 2015

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Four things I’m thinking about the NBA and the Cleveland Cavaliers…

1.) LeBron James loves his teammates.

Sorry… change that. LeBron James loves to love his teammates.

From his days playing at Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary with Dru Joyce III, Sian Cotton, Willie McGee and Romeo Travis, to his days as a Cavalier and thier elaborate choreographed pre-game introductions, James has always seemed most comfortable when his team exudes a family atmosphere. When they’re close. When everybody fits in.

So, it wasn’t shocking to see that this weekend, as his new version of the Cavaliers continues to round into form, that James would address what he saw as the team’s squeakiest wheel going forward: power forward, Kevin Love.

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