The Wizards’ out-classed the Cavs in Cleveland tonight. John Wall, Bradley Beal, Trevor Ariza, and Marcin Gortat really handled the Cavs’ starters. Spencer Hawes was a huge factor off the bench for the wine and gold but the Cavs managed only 31 points in the entire second half.
Archive for February, 2014
Pretty big game tonight for Cleveland. Riding an NBA-long six game win streak, the stakes got higher, as the Wine & Gold head to Toronto to face their toughest game of the last two weeks. Earl Clark and Henry Sims are gone, and Spencer Hawes makes his Cavalier debut. Tristan Thompson and Anthony Bennett return home to Canada, where AB reportedly had eighty friends and family in attendance. Unfortunately, three of his friends couldn’t make it; Anderson Varejao, Dion Waiters and CJ Miles stayed back in Cleveland to recuperate from their various maladies. That makes for a tough win against a good team on the road.
“He was the franchise’s first superstar, well before the days of Brad Daugherty or LeBron James or Kyrie Irving. He averaged 20.5 points, 8.4 assists and 4.6 rebounds in year one with the team. He made his trademark running hooks and scoop shots and racked up the assists. At 35 years old. He only missed one other game the rest of the season season after his early season protest. He earned his incredible ninth All-Star bid.”
Last Sunday, Kyrie Irving put on a dazzling display of scoring and passing to become the second-youngest player in NBA history to be named MVP of the NBA All-Star Game. In seeing Irving explode for 31 points and 14 assists, Cavs fans finally got to enjoy a glimpse of the Irving they thought they’d see this year: a dynamic and efficient scorer who is also able to get his teammates theirs.
Now, of course, the All-Star Game bears only a passing resemblance to even the least defensively engaged regular season game, but it’s difficult to see the Cavaliers’ star have so much success as a distributor and not try to find ways to bottle even the tiniest flicker of that lighting as the games that count start back up again this week. For Irving to reach his potential as a player, he must do a better job getting his teammates involved. The more he does so, the less predictable any given Cavs possession will be and, arguably, the better the looks Irving will find for himself, as well.
It seems completely appropriate that Craig Ehlo’s place in #CavsRank would fall on NBA Trade Deadline day. Ehlo played 500 regular season games for Cleveland and 40 more in the playoffs. He scored 5100 points, grabbed 2300 rebounds, and doled out 1800 assists while with the Cavs. He ranks fourth in franchise history for steals. But he is basically a footnote, remembered primarily as part of a Michael Jordan highlight. Now, his place in #Cavsrank will be forgotten as we instead ponder myriad trade rumors.
Thanks to David Zavac for offering today’s addition to #CavsRank. Give it a read, then resume discussions of what will surely be a new addition to #CavsRank 2018: Spencer Hawes.
There are not a lot of details, but Cleveland has dealt two second round picks for Spencer Hawes. In order for salaries to work, other players must be involved. Hawes is a 25-year old, floor stretching center. He is a free agent after this season. Cavs:the Blog will update as more is available.
Update: Apparently Earl Clark and Henry Sims are included in the deal, along with the two 2014 draft picks. Through the years, oftentimes I have wished that the Cavs would do more with their second rounders, due to the great value those (typically non-guaranteed) contracts provide if the team finds a gem…or they could stash a few Euros. If no other deals are made and Andy is healthy, the frontcourt is very packed with Varejao, Thompson, Zeller, Bennett and Hawes. Perhaps there is another deal coming, or Varejao is going to be out for a while. At the moment, I am neither excited or upset about this trade.
Can I wait to have an opinion until April?
The Cavs stretched it to six straight wins tonight, after letting a 21 point lead dwindle to two points. Cleveland gutted out a win and overcame the absences of Anderson Varejao and Dion Waiters, and an injury to C.J. Miles. The Cavaliers got some big-time play from all the starters, and just enough from the bench. This was a gut-wrenching victory.
It was a rout for the Cavs with little to note besides a ferocious dunk by Dion and a hyper-extended knee on the landing. The dunk and the scary moment are illustrated above. Though he missed the second half, Dion is thankfully claiming he’s ok. Whew! After taking the lead, 7-5 in the first, the Cavs led the rest of the way and cruised to a blowout over the Sixers, to claim their fifth straight win. The Cavs were engaged, energetic, and performed like they were playing for something, and Philadelphia… did not.
Philly’s lone highlight came in the form of a ceremonial two day contract that they signed Monday with area high-schooler, Kevin Grow, a young man with Down syndrome, who scored 14 points in his final two varsity basketball games. It was a touching moment when Kevin was introduced to the arena tonight, and he was the highlight of the game for Philly fans. The story took a sad turn after the game, though, when Grow called his agent and demanded a trade.
I am privileged to introduce something big today. Recently, eighteen of your favorite Cavs bloggers, plus another writer, combined forces to rank the best Cavaliers in franchise history. We’re calling it #CavsRank. The guidelines were that the rankings should only consider the players’ time spent in Cleveland. Each writer had the freedom to prioritize whatever criterion they wished: short runs of brilliance; many years of solid play; critical impact to the franchise’s winningest teams; or awesome hair.
Each blogger submitted a list of his top twenty Cavaliers, with 20 points awarded for a #1 ranking, down to one point awarded for the player ranked 20th. All the numbers were tallied and a composite Top 20 list was derived.
- Mallory, Robert, Tom and me from Cavs:the Blog
- Carter Rodriguez and Josh Lockwood from realcavsfans.com
- Ryan Mourton, David Zavac, Patrick Elder and Justin Rowan from fearthesword.com
- Andrew Schnitkey, Scott Sargent, Jacob Rosen, Ben Cox, and Kirk Lammers of waitingfornextyear.com
- Cleveland Jackson of stepienrules.com
- Amin Vafa and Eric Maroun of hardwoodparoxysm.com, and
- Scott Raab, writer of The Whore of Akron and a contributor to Esquire.
Over the next month, articles will rotate amongst the sites, counting down from #20 to #1. We are all excited, whether it is reliving the Zydrunas Ilgauskas teams of the 2000′s; remembering the Price – Daugherty – Nance squads of the late 80′s and early 90′s; basking in the glow of individual stars like World B Free, Shawn Kemp and Terrell Brandon; or even talking about guys from the 1970′s that most of us never witnessed. Fortunately, several of those early greats continue to make an impact on Cavalier basketball, including Mr. Cavalier himself, Austin Carr.
The top twenty will start tomorrow, but first, a look at the “others receiving votes”.