Archive for the ‘Alternate Realities’ Category

Cavs Haiku Throwdown

Wednesday, August 13th, 2014


Kevin Love is coming to Cleveland, LeBron James wants to stay in Cleveland, Kyrie Irving is locked up for five years, and vets are flocking to the Cavs.  It’s a whole new era now after being one of the craziest off seasons for the Cavs since the King left. As an exercise in meditation and reflection, The Cavs: The Blog bloggers have crafted some heartfelt basketball related Haikus.  Do you have some basketball Haikus that have been brewing in your brain during this off season?  Let us hear them.


30 Years Under the Wheel: An Oral History Pt.2 (1995-Present)

Friday, January 17th, 2014

Click here for Part 1.

The Cavaliers came into the 1995-96 season with plenty of good feelings. Larry Johnson seemed fully recovered from his nagging back troubles, there was still hope within the organization that center, Sean Rooks, could regain his promising rookie form and the addition of point guard Damon Stoudamire, while continuing the team’s trend toward the undersized, had just wrapped up a stellar senior year at Arizona and finally gave the team some “out” in their attack to balance out the “in.”

Stoudamire did not disappoint, logging 19 points and over nine assists a game as a rookie in a staggering 40.9 minutes a game. Johnson had a bounce back year going 20.5/8.4 while, more importantly, playing in 81 games that year, and the Cavs, despite Rooks continued decline into the doldrums, grabbed the seventh seed in the East. They lost in six games to the Penny Hardaway-led Boston Celtics, but were slotted for another high pick, number six overall, in 1996 and, after all, LJ was back. Stoudamire was legit. Things looked good…

And didn’t look much worse after that sixth pick became Antoine Walker, the multi-talented power forward out of Kentucky. A team with a core of Stoudamire, Johnson and Walker could be a real threat come playoff time, it seemed. And it probably would have. It just didn’t work out that way.


30 Years Under the Wheel: An Oral History Pt.1 (1985-95)

Thursday, January 9th, 2014


[Note: In the waning days of 2013, Grantland’s Zach Lowe delivered mankind The Wheel. Well, a discussion of it, anyway. The Wheel is the first replacement to the NBA’s draft lottery system that the league has been using since 1985 to receive, as Lowe says, high level support. The basics are simple: over a 30-year span, every team will receive each of the 30 picks in the first round once and only once. The article goes into more depth, so read it if you haven’t already. Since Lowe’s article, several “fixes” to the NBA’s tanking “problem” have been bandied about (including Lowe and Bill Simmons, who discuss tweaks to The Wheel on the B.S. Report). I have my tweaks. You probably have yours. But, instead of more of the same, I thought it would be fun — however terribly unscientific — to look at what the Cavs drafts would have been like had the league instituted The Wheel in 1985 instead of the lottery. I took the Cavs’ actual 1985 draft pick (number nine) and then let The Wheel take it from there, using the players actually chosen in the slots where the Cavs would be picking. Just like the real Cavs, the Bizarro Cavs of Wheel World had their ups and downs. Curious who you’d have spent your days rooting for? Take a look, true believers…]

Cleveland kicked off its new era choosing hometown boy Charles Oakley at number nine. Oak, while never an all-star caliber player, provided defense, rebounding and toughness. Scoring was addressed the following year when the Cavs, with the number four overall selection, took “The Rifleman,” Chuck Person. The 27th pick in 1987 yielded  only Nate Blackwell, whose rookie season in the league proved to be his last. But the Cavs were able to find something in the lower part of the first round the next year, drafting combo guard Brian Shaw out of UC-Santa Barbara with the 24th pick. Oakley’s toughness rubbed off on his teammates; the Cavs were Oakley’s team. By 1990-91, Person’s scoring was down slightly, but he was still firing it in at an 18.4 PPG clip, Shaw, building on a solid rookie year, put up nearly 14/8 in his second go-around, and Oak was Oak, going for 11.2 points and 12.1 rebounds a game. The Cavs, though, while balanced, continued to just miss out on the playoffs, as the team whiffed on the 13th and 12th picks in back-to-back drafts, trying to help Oakley up front with PF Michael Smith and PF/C Alec Kessler, both of whom were not long for the league.