Closing out this week’s review of the Central Division is the Detroit Pistons. Unlike the Chicago Bulls and Indiana Pacers, who are absolutely expected to make the playoffs, and unlike the Milwaukee Bucks, who probably got a whole lot worse by losing Jennings and Monta Ellis, the Pistons, like the Cavs, fall somewhere between bad and semi-relevent. What does all this mean? Welcome to your 2013-2014 7-8 seed competition!
Archive for the ‘Off-Season Moves’ Category
I know you remember the game the picture above is from. So do Dion and Andy, as they daily recollect the commitment they made to each other in this moment…”we will never let the Bucks beat us like that again”.
And they’re right; Brandon Jennings is gone. Following up on Robert and Patrick’s looks at the Pacers and Bulls, I drew the short straw and preview Cavs versus Bucks. On the other hand though, the Bucks were the Eastern Conference 8th seed last year; this may be the most important match-up for the young, playoff-hungry, Wine and Gold. On to it…
Hi, Central Division. Haven’t seen you for a while. Looks like summer’s been treating you well. I mean, everyone except for you, Milwaukee. But for everyone else, yeah, summer lovin’ totally had us a blast.
As we slog steadily toward September, we here at Cavs: The Blog thought it might be good to check in on our mainly geographically linked rivals in the NBA’s Central Division. Just as Cavs’ fans are (mostly) all bonging the Bynum Kool-Aid, each of the other teams in our division, our de facto rivals, have done some thing(s) to give their own fan bases, to quote Bonnie Raitt on this blog for what I truly hope is the first time, something to talk about. Have the Cavs bettered or worsened their chances in the Central? We won’t know until the ball gets tossed, but let’s start by looking around The Division with the Pace Cars of Indianapolis, Indiana.
…and is of little lasting consequence, but, kids, it is still technically competitive basketball.
Tomorrow, the Cavaliers kick off their 2013 NBA Summer League campaign in Las Vegas. In an attempt to manufacture some meaning beyond “player development”isms, this year’s games will culminate in tournament play between all the participating teams. So, yes, there is still the chance that Samardo Samuels will lead some team to a championship… of sorts.
The Cavs play the Knicks Friday at 5 p.m. (8 p.m. EST) then play the Grizzlies on Sunday at 5 p.m. and the Pelicans on Monday at 3 p.m. Cavs: The Blog will be reporting live from the Grizzlies and Pelicans game and, from what I understand, there’s no telling who you might run into at Summer League.
The tournament starts on July 17 and will crown its winner on Monday, July 22. Dion, bring the trophy home, baby!
Summer League is a fickle mistress. She both gives (most of these guys we’re watching are/will be NBA players, after all) and takes away (viewers are constantly reminded how little success on the Summer League level means to the games that count). But, hey, we just spent months watching highlight reels for guys who got drafted by other teams so, really, Summer League gives us cause for two things: 1.) We now have a team with “Cleveland Cavaliers” on their jerseys. This is no small matter. Mid-July is the first opportunity we’ve had to cheer for such a collection in a while. There’s no reason not to enjoy that. 2.) Many of those guys we developed our draft-crushes on will be there as well. So, Vegas is our chance to say our good-byes to the Otto Porters and Ben McLemores of the world, to let them let us down easy with a slew of 3-17 shooting nights or to keep that fire going with some amazing displays of skill, athleticism or shooting touch. This is Summer League and Vegas; this basketball’s got “consequence free” written all over it. Lap it up!
According to ESPN.com’s Chris Broussard, Andrew Bynum has verbally agreed (remember that free agents can’t put pen to paper just yet) to that two-year, $24M deal the Cavs offered him on Monday:
Bynum and the Cavaliers agreed to an incentive-laden, two-year contract that could be worth up to $24 million, sources told ESPN. The Cavs hold a team option for the second year of the deal, and only $6 million of the contract is guaranteed, according to sources.
You’ll remember that last offseason, the Cavs kicked the tires on playing the same facilitating role the Sixers ended up filling in a four-team Dwight Howard-to-LA blockbuster. Bynum never played a game for Philly, and a year later, he’s in wine and gold on a redemption contract. Chris Grant is kind of an infuriating GM—the surprising draft selections, the dense smoke screens, his insistence on trying to fleece the other team in every trade—but let it be said he’s never seen a low-risk, high-reward opportunity he didn’t like. Here’s hoping this Bynum move is more like when Grant traded for Baron Davis and the Clippers’ lottery pick and less like Christian Eyenga’s entire career.
Next off-season has frequently been mentioned as the time to sell a big name free agent on:
- Playing with Kyrie,
- Joining a young, up-and-coming team that just made the playoffs for the first time (hopeful thinking), and
- a maximum contract
After the signing of Jarrett Jack, how is the Cavs’ cap situation shaping up?
Things are heating up in free agency. Cleveland is set to snag Jarrett Jack with a 4 year, $25 million contract. Three years are guaranteed; Jack’s age 30, 31 and 32 seasons. Many people weren’t expecting a long-term contract this summer, but this veteran combo-guard probably rated highly on many fan’s off-season wish lists. Jack provides a durable combo-guard to spell Kyrie and Dion, and much needed shooting.
A few facts and stats:
The Cavaliers made a splash in FA today, agreeing to a four-year deal for veteran point guard Jarrett Jack. The deal is being reported for $25 million with a team option for the 4th year. This move solidifies the backup point guard spot that the Cavaliers were badly lacking. It also adds a veteran presence to a very young team. Jack has been around the league. The Cavaliers will be his 6th team in 8 years. Jack had a memorable post-season performance but he played well all season as a capable backup to Stephen Curry.
Jack can shoot. Much like Mo Williams, he can score from just about anywhere and is one of the few players that shoots well enough from mid-range to justify firing a lot of mid-range shots.
Jack is currently in his prime, and at 29 years old, he should keep up his current production for at least 2 more years. That the 4th year is a team option is good for the Cavaliers. Jack is pretty durable, and his presence should mitigate any disastrous losing streaks should the Cavaliers star players find themselves on the injured list.
The Cavaliers say farewell to Shaun Livingston, who was signed today by the Brooklyn Nets. Livingston played very well during his time with the Cavaliers and was a big part of the Cavaliers “fun February”.
I posted a quick link to the Earl Clark signing earlier, and somewhat to my surprise, most readers were pleased with the signing. Having watched a handful of Clark’s games last year and being aware of his production, the move seemed inconsequential to me. It is certainly low risk though, with only one year guaranteed. But is it a move forward for the team? A few facts: