Author Archive

#CavsRank Villains: 20-16

Wednesday, August 26th, 2015

20. Jim Paxson

(By Cory Hughey) Some of the most flagrant terrorists to the American ideal have been internal, from Benedict Arnold to Timothy McVeigh. Some of the biggest villains to the Cavaliers chances at winning a title ate away at the franchise like a termite, from the inside out. You could make the case that Paxson was a victim of circumstance, and I don’t think he intentionally damaged the team (except for tanking for LeBron of course), but he was certainly a stooge. The Cavaliers failed miserably under Paxson’s time in the rusty throne to the tune of a 185-307 record.

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Cavs Sign Sasha Kaun to 2-Year Deal

Sunday, August 23rd, 2015

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The Cavaliers off-season bench bolstering locked in one of its final pieces Saturday with the signing of Sasha Kaun to a two-year deal.

The 6-11 Kaun was the 56th overall pick in the 2008 NBA Draft by the Seattle Supersonics before his rights were dealt to the Cavs for cash. Kaun, though, never donned the wine and gold choosing, instead, to play professionally in his native Russia for Euroleague power CSKA Moscow. Last season, Kaun averaged career highs with 9.9 points and 4.5 rebounds while playing 20.1 minutes per game.

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The Point Four-ward: In (Con)Tract-ion

Wednesday, August 19th, 2015

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Four points I’m thinking about the Cleveland Cavaliers…

1.) It has become almost commonplace to say that LeBron James never stops surprising. For all the highlights, the masterful performances, and even this season’s Herculean Finals run, he’s just one of those players who can still surprise. He can surprise, in spite of how much more surprising his feats must be than those of other players. He can surprise, in spite of our judgement of him being set so ridiculously high.

This summer has been no exception.

No, LeBron hasn’t come out with a surprise on the scale of Summer 2014’s “The Return,” but in smaller ways, he’s proven just as difficult to anticipate.

Take, for example, James’s stance on the Tristan Thompson contract negotiations. First, when it was widely expected that James, who shares agent Rich Paul with Thompson, would wait for Thompson to come to terms before signing his own contract with the team, James did the opposite. On July 9, the first day that NBA free agent contracts could be signed, James informed the team that he’s be back on what amounts to a one-year $23 million deal (the deal’s second year, is a player option for $24 million).

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Pop Quiz: I Know What I Did This Summer…

Wednesday, August 12th, 2015

What would a healthy run of good summer filler be without a check-in to see what, if anything, your favorite CtB writers think about, dream of, yearn for and… well, consume heaping portions of when they’re not hard at work covering your Cleveland Cavaliers?

We may not be riding banana boats with fellow NBA stars and their celebrity wives (or maybe we are) but that doesn’t mean we don’t know how to kick back and enjoy ourselves some off-season too.

So, without further ado…

1.) What have you been listening to this summer?

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Pop Quiz: Around the NBA

Tuesday, August 11th, 2015

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Our second day of testing finds the CtB classroom at near capacity.

The Cavaliers blipped back onto the NBA’s near-silent off-season radar yesterday with the report that Tristan Thompson’s agent Rich Paul said that, should the Cavs and their restricted free agent PF/C fail to reach a long term deal — meaning that Thompson would sign a one-year $6.9 million qualifying offer and become an unrestricted free agent in the summer of 2016 — next season would be the popular player’s “last year with the Cavs.”

CtB’s writers — with our trademark prescience — chimed in on the Thompson situation in yesterday’s pop quiz. So today, it’s on to the rest of the NBA:

1.) True or False: The Lakers, as Kobe Bryant predicted, will make the playoffs.

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Pop Quiz: Cavaliers Off-Season

Monday, August 10th, 2015

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August is a terrible month for concentration. Amid all of your trips to the beach, gastrointestinal conundrums like this nestled beneath unassuming tents at the state fair, and attacking your “before summer’s over” bucket list with the precision of a drunken surgeon (which, really, let’s be honest, is just a much longer list of g.i. ticklers… like any one of these), it can be difficult to keep focused.

But the 2015-16 NBA season kicks off in a mere 11 weeks, so there’s no time for us here at CtB to laze about and get the mental version of a paunchy tummy (physical versions… well, that’s another story). We need to stay mentally sharp — on the ready.

In the absence of an ESPN-affiliated drill instructor to kick in our CtB barracks door at 4:45 am and make each one of us recite LeBron James’s career shooting percentages with five seconds or less on the shot clock for games decided by exactly three points while running uphill carrying a Mo Williams jersey filled with rocks, well… we opted for a quick pop quiz instead.

Feel free to play along and match your own off-season Cavs mental prowess against our crack team of writers. Or… you know… start looking for rocks for your Mo jersey.

1.) True or False: Tristan Thompson will be re-signed by the end of August.

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The Point Four-ward: Room for Improvement

Thursday, August 6th, 2015

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Four points I’m thinking about the summer workout plans of the Cleveland Cavaliers…

NBA fans often bemoan the summer’s later months, the ones that find our steady intravenous drip from the hoops-related news cycle almost entirely pinched off. For the players, though, the desert-like days spanning mid-July through mid-September are the only time of the year where the spotlight of fan and media attention is turned off — with some players retreating further from that light than others… of course. Some may focus on spending this time with their families. Others take lavish vacations to decompress and recover from the grind of a long NBA season. But, eventually, at some point during the summer they get back into the gym and work on their games.

With the NBA landscape gone radio silent, here’s what I’m hoping four Cavaliers are working on with all the diligence (and, hopefully, the effectiveness) of a Rocky training montage.

1.) Timofey Mozgov: The left-baseline jumper.

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The Point Four-ward: Got Them Benchwarmin’ Blues

Wednesday, July 29th, 2015

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Four points I’m thinking about the Cleveland Cavaliers…

1.) The Cavs didn’t just re-sign a cult hero when they inked guard Matthew Dellavedova to a  one-year $1.2 million deal, they created the type of depth and flexibility in their backcourt that the team never really had last season.

When the Cavs decided to trade Dion Waiters for key pickups Iman Shumpert and J.R. Smith last January, they found themselves down one reliable ball handler. Then, when they decided to sign aging big man Kendrick Perkins rather than a third point guard they doubled down on the fact that they’d be okay with just two point guards on the roster — Dellavedova backing up starter Kyrie Irving — because their primary ball handler was and would continue to be LeBron James.

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The Point Four-ward: Harris-tanbul (Not Constantinople)

Wednesday, July 15th, 2015

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Four points I’m thinking about the Cleveland Cavaliers in Summer League…

1.) It sure was nice to see Joe Harris finally shake off… well, whatever he had to shake off in order to get the ball to go in the hoop. Harris “exploded” for 13 points, 10 of which came in the fourth quarter and overtime, as the Cavs Summer League team clawed its way back from a 21-point deficit to notch a 94-87 OT victory over the Milwaukee Bucks. Harris had been a combined 4-20 from the field (1-9 from three) through the Cavs first two Summer League contests, so seeing him nail 4-8 from deep against the Bucks seemed to indicate that the second year swingman out of Virginia can actually do what the Cavs will need him to do if he is ever going to crack the regular season rotation.

It wasn’t just Harris’ shot that gave Cavs fans so little to hope for when thinking about the future of the team’s 2014 second round pick. He was also a -12 and -14 respectively in his first two games before leading the team with a +21 in Monday’s match-up.

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The Point Four-ward: Roster-farian

Friday, July 10th, 2015

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Four points I’m thinking about the Cleveland Cavaliers…

1.) We all knew it was going to happen.

But, when LeBron James re-signed with the Cavs for one year at $23 million (and a second year, a player option, at $24 million), a collective sigh could be heard across Cavs Nation. It wasn’t a sigh brought on by anticipation, it was a pure sigh of relief: relief that James wasn’t going to drag out his contract negotiations forever leaving the Cavs in an even relative limbo.

No more stories about how James planned to wait until last to re-up with Cleveland, putting symbolic pressure on the organization in their attempts to upgrade a roster that, even when greatly depleted, got to Game 6 of the NBA Finals. Now it’s official: James will be a Cavalier again.
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