Archive for the ‘Links To The Present’ Category

Links to the Present: Still No Dan Edition

Friday, April 25th, 2014


Dan Gilbert still hasn’t been talking, and the media hasn’t been writing any news about the Cavs, just hardcore analysis.  It’s always a good idea to start your day on a positive note, so check out an article by Ryan Mourton at Fear The Sword praising some aspects of the Cavs defense.

The Cavaliers allowed a 4th best 1,969 attempts in the restricted area. How important is that number? Well, the league’s three best teams in terms of defensive rating are also the leagues three best teams in terms of number of made field goals allowed in the restricted area.


Links to the Present: “Where’s Daniel?” and the Rust Belt Edition

Thursday, April 24th, 2014

"Cleveland in the Distance" +DG, Martin Gonzalez via the Creative Commons license

Kicking off Thursday, Marla Ridenour of Beacon Journal fills in for the convalescing Jason Lloyd, and asks the same question that everyone who follows the Cavs is asking right now, “Where’s Dan Gilbert?”  Gilbert was conspicuously absent from the Cavs Tuesday press conference.  The title of Marla’s piece, the “Underlying vibe doesn’t bode well for Cavaliers coach Mike Brown,” says it all.

Gilbert did not attend Tuesday’s gathering. He was off “trying to make us better,” Griffin said. That probably means Gilbert is contacting candidates for the roles of coach, general manager and/or president, a new layer he’s considering adding. It remains to be seen whether anyone wants to work with the Cavs’ collection of misfits and for an impulsive owner who fired General Manager Chris Grant on Feb. 6 without a long-term plan.

I know Tony Rizzo has been asking, “Where’s Gilbert?” all week on the Really Big show — well, when he’s not talking about Johnny Football and Bernie Kosar. Bill Livingston of the Plain Dealer wondered the same thing, when he questioned Gilbert’s Lerner-esque media ducking and lack of accountability, yesterday.

If the GM expects accountability, in turn, where does that leave coach Mike Brown? He seldom used the coach’s ultimate weapon, control of playing time…

Griffin’s remarks could be interpreted as an indication of dissatisfaction with Brown, for how would it be possible to expect anything else after such a disappointing season?

How far that extends to the owner is unclear, and that is the problem.

The owner is always unaccountable, except to the turnstiles. Presumably, Gilbert will eventually share his thoughts. The seat the owner finally sits in will be a hot one.

Livingston’s being a little hard on Gilbert, and I give Rizzo his props.  Rizz always praises Dan’s willingness to spend, which, when compared to the Dolans, is not an insignificant thing.  Ultimately, I’d rather have an engaged, possibly sometimes over-meddling owner who spends and cares than a distant owner who views the team merely as a revenue generating asset.

My bet is that the reason we haven’t heard a lot about Dan or Mike Brown’s fate, is that Mr. Gilbert is waiting for the first round of the playoffs to play out. There have been rumors of Terry Stotts being on the hot seat, and rumors that Frank Vogel is “coaching for his job.” Dan would probably go after both of those guys in a heartbeat, because they’ve done what he wants done: turned mediocre young teams into contenders. And if you don’t think Portland is a contender, then you didn’t watch LaMarcus Aldridge’s moneyball destroying 89 points in the last two games against Daryl Morey’s Rockets. Is Dan plotting like Tywin Lanister to go after David Morway?  Morway assembled this Pacers team before Larry Bird canned him. And could Gilbert then go after coach Vogel? Will Tywin Danister leave Bird holding the bag?  I hope so.

While you’re contemplating all that, sign up for Kyrie Irving’s basketball youth camp for kids grades 1-12, in Cleveland, in July. Also check out this piece by CtB’s own Patrick Redford at The Classical, entitled, “Watching and not Watching Dirk Nowitzki.

Speaking of the Classical, long time Editor there, Pete Beatty, is returning to Cleveland to be the Editorial Director for Belt Magazine. “Belt is an online magazine devoted to long-form journalism, essay, and commentary with a distinctly Rust Belt sensibility.”  Based in Cleveland, they “strive to bring in voices from all over the Rust Belt.” Today, Belt’s Laura Putre published a fascinating History of Rust Belt Alt-Weeklies, and on Tuesday, Pete Beatty, who grew up in Berea, wrote a beautiful editorial on returning to Cleveland and the Rust Belt called, “Boomerang.” I’ll leave you with a couple of my favorite paragraphs.

I have to explain what “Cleveland” meant to me then, and what it means now. Like a lot of people from the suburbs, my sense of what, where, and how a city was came from extremely basic data. Big cities were where the tall buildings and pro sports teams were. Cleveland was my designated big city, my regional capital, my great and wonderful Oz, because it had the Indians, Browns, and Cavaliers, plus a modest collection of skyscrapers…

I also didn’t know that there are thousands of Clevelands across America and around the globe, little galaxies half-finished and half-undone, the Rust Belt of the world. We rushed to build up these places, and rushed just as fast to empty them out. Every single one of these places has stories and songs. But I didn’t know any of that. My idea of Cleveland was an blank spot, surrounded by a desert of tract houses, SUVs that never got dirty, and a lifetime of joyless commercial pilgrimages to malls and big box stores.

Links to the Present: Matty Dellavedova edition — Updated with Xtra awards and @dg_riff

Wednesday, April 23rd, 2014

Matt D Cover CC Keith Allison

Matthew Dellavedova has been referred to by Cavs: The Bloggers as Delly and Matty SuperDova.  I call him Matty D sometimes.  He’s been a little ball of constant effort, and in almost every season review article coming out about the Cavs, he has received high praise.

As of yesterday, the world needs start calling him the Rookie of the Year.  Cavs: The Blog writer Kevin Hetrick crowned Delly with the award.

 Dellavedova did some nice point-guardy things, posting true shooting of 54% with a 3.1 to 1 assist-to-turnover ratio.  More than anything though, he was energy.  On offense, he always pushed the ball.  On defense, he was a nuisance.  The first time the NBA really experienced Matty SuperDova, they weren’t ready for his Delly*.  In back to back games against Washington in mid-November with the Cavs looking lethargic and disinterested, in stepped the undrafted rookie.  And he was the sun, a beaming ray of light on the otherwise morose Cavaliers.  To Brad Beal, he was like a fly on flypaper, white on rice, impossible to shake…I think Randy Wittman tried handing Beal a taser during one timeout.  Things started happening when Dellavedova was on the court, good things for the Cavaliers.  In those two games, Cleveland was -39 in the 44 minutes he sat and a glorious +39 in the 57 minutes he played.   And it stayed that way much of the season, with the Cavs being outscored by 7 points per 100 possessions during the 2700 minutes he sat, but torching opponents by 4 pp100p for the 1300 minutes he played.

And for all of that, Matthew Dellavedova, you win the very prestigious, yet largely ignored, inaugural Rookie of the Year.  Congratulations!

I hope Anthony Bennet doesn’t get too jealous of the flourishing point guard.


Links to the Present: It’s All Okay Edition

Monday, April 21st, 2014


The long disappointing Cavs season is finally over.  People are trying to figure out what went wrong with the team, and one positive thought has emerged.  The team has the same problems as last year and no new ones.  Is Mike Brown the right coach? Can Kyrie Irving and Dion Waiters play together?  Will Tristan Thompson finally become a quality starter?  Can the team stay healthy?

Dan Gilbert’s press conference about this season and his plans for the off-season is Tuesday, so he will hopefully answer a lot of those questions then.  Until then, we can look at the news that has come out since the Brooklyn win and be happy that there has been no drama. (more…)

Links to the Present: Accepting Blame Edition

Tuesday, April 15th, 2014

Cleveland Cavaliers v Brooklyn Nets

The Cavs season comes to a much needed end tomorrow against the Brooklyn Nets;  the team has looked sluggish the past two games against the Bucks and Celtics.  The amount of effort exhibited by Kyrie Irving and the team as a whole has me wondering about the future.  Maybe, the Cavs are still another season away from the playoffs if effort has anything to do with results.

Kyrie Irving has been very truthful about his effort.  Bob Finnan of The News-Herald & The Morning Journal has some of Irving’s quote on the topic.

“It’s disappointing based on our effort,” Irving said. “Our fans definitely don’t deserve it, especially at the end of the season. We preached it and said we wanted to finish strong, but teams are just getting the best of us. Just our effort level wasn’t there. It’s disappointing, and we have to be disappointed in ourselves. The last two games, the fans don’t deserve it.”

The type of effort being displayed scares me, especially when it is from the Cavs’ supposed star.  However, it’s refreshing to see him own up to and address the topic.


Links to the Present: Don’t Tank Edition

Friday, April 11th, 2014


The worst victories of all are moral victories, but I’ll take any type of Cavs victories at this point.  After the Atlanta Hawks won on Wednesday night, the Cavs were officially eliminated from the playoffs, even though they decimated a Pistons team that played like they enjoyed being humiliated in some perverse way.  The remaining three games could have drafting ramifications for the Cavs if they win.  A higher draft pick would be nice, but it should not be the Cavs front office’s only worry.  The team is playing great, and these extra wins could be a wonderful springboard going into next season.

Rich Exner of The Northeast Ohio Media Group explained some of the draft ramifications if they win out in his article from yesterday.

But the Cavs could easily fall to 10th or below in the lottery standings, reducing their odds. Tenth place carries a 4 percent chance of picking in the top three, and an 87 percent chance of picking 10th.

In ninth place, the Cavs would have a 6.1 percent chance to earn a top three pick. (more…)

Links to the Present: Other People Edition

Tuesday, April 8th, 2014


One of the the hardest things to deal with in life is someone saying something about your feelings that you know is absolutely wrong.  Kyrie Irving and Dion Waiters are dealing with that type of situation right now.  During an interview on ESPN’s “First Take,” Josh Gordon let it be known that he thought Kyrie and Dion were not overly friendly with each other.

“[Dion Waiters is] my neighbor in my building, so we hang out all the time. I’m aware of the rift in the locker room. That’s just alpha males and supreme athletes trying to share the spotlight.”.


Links to the Present: Getting Ready Edition

Friday, April 4th, 2014

rube cavs

When Friday hits, you have to get prepared for the weekend.  Some people get haircuts. Other people go grocery shopping for a family gathering. People like me contemplate why they hated on Kyrie coming back after he had an amazing game against Orlando. A few people just grab a six pack of their favorite beverage and turn their television on to watch their NBA team.  If you’re a Cavs fan, this weekend you’re going have set aside time to read about their playoff situation to fully appreciate them battling the Atlanta Hawks on Friday and the Charlotte Bobcats on Saturday.

Mary Schmitt Boyer of The Plain Dealer has the playoff situation covered.  She points out the harsh reality that the Cavs really aren’t in total control or even moderate control of their playoff chances.  They are going to need some lucky losses from both the Knicks and the Hawks, since they don’t own the tie breaker against either of those teams. (more…)

Links to the Present: Luke Warm (On Kyrie) Edition

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2014


Two weeks has passed since Kyrie Irving injured his left bicep against the Clippers.  He has been reevaluated and can participate in full contact practice according to Mary Schmitt Boyer of The Plain Dealer. Irving’s status for tonight is, reportedly, a game time decision

Irving wants to be back, though, according to ESPN,  in this piece about his return.

“I feel good,” Irving said. “It was great to be back out there. It was definitely hard for me these last two weeks just sitting on the bench. But as always, if I go down, I’m the biggest cheerleader. ”

“If I’m ready to go, I see no reason to stop me,” he said. “But obviously everyone has their reason, as we know in this business. Obviously, you have a respect for it, but as a basketball player and as a competitor, there’s an inner drive to be back out there. We’ll see what happens.”


Links To The Present: Maturity Edition

Wednesday, March 26th, 2014
The constant professional

The constant professional

After the first couple weeks of the season, I didn’t think mature was a word I would use to describe this Cavs team’s mindset or even my own.  It’s happening slowly, but it’s happening, and I hope the Cavs are able to hold on to this change.   When Luol Deng was traded to the Cavs, he brought an above average defense and often times struggling shot in his suitcase .  He also brought some maturity. He knows no rash emotions and it shows when he is asked about missing the playoffs for the first time in four years in this Bob Finnan piece. (more…)