Kevin’s Pre-season Predictions, a Redux

April 4th, 2013 by Kevin Hetrick

This week, Cleveland reaches the 90% point of the season, and the team quit already, so now serves as good a time as any to review my bold, and likely folly, pre-season predictions. Let’s dive in:

The prediction that I made about Tristan developing several right-handed moves...probably my most accurate. Oh, I didn't say that? Well, his 11 & 9 proved closest for me.

  1. 33 wins – Ouch.  If Andy and Kyrie played 75 games, this would have happened.  The good health was wishful thinking.  Please stay on-the-court next year.
  2. Beat an elite team on the road by double digits – Not quite.  Cleveland’s victory in Los Angeles against the Clippers failed to qualify; the Cavs won by seven.
  3. Lose at home to a horrible team by twenty – Also, slightly off, but a loss by 13 to Phoenix nearly hits the mark.  General idea being that the season would be up-and-down.  I wish it was ending as “up” though.
  4. CJ Miles finishes second on the team in scoring at nearly 14 points – Tom consistently noted his friend projecting CJ as a solid contributor on the Wine & Gold, but I was riding that train, too.  Miles currently resides sixth on the team in scoring with 11.3 points per game.
  5. His PER is also 13-ish – Miles is pairing true shooting that exceeds his previous four seasons with career best defensive rebounding; his PER hits 15.  At the beginning of the season, I envisioned Miles receiving more minutes, while scoring frequently, yet inefficiently.
  6. Each of Cleveland’s wings post PER between 13 and 14 – Only Dion Waiters came through here.  Miles exceeded, while Casspi and Gee under-performed.
  7. Boobie’s PER would be 11.2, but with 40% from deep – Gibson is hitting career lows from the field, from deep, and at the free throw line.  Sigh…
  8. He gets traded – Wrong here.  Jon Leuer got sent packing instead.  Best of luck in free agency, Daniel.
  9. Kyrie receives four points in MVP voting – If Irving played 70 games, no doubt this would have happened.
  10. Due to 20 points, 7 assists and 57% true shooting – Kyrie’s TS% is 57%, but his scoring is higher, with lesser distribution.  All things considered, I would have preferred my prediction.
  11. Harangody hits 17 threes – I picked the wrong Luke as my surprise bench player of the year.  Ummmm…Harangody made 23 from deep in the D-League, where he is a career 41% three-point hoister.
  12. Tristan averages 11 & 9 – It’s actually 11.3 and 9.2…I will turn in my prognosticator-card on the way out the door.
  13. With 47% shooting from the field and 57% free throws – Thompson exceeded my guess, posting 48.6 and 61 to date; this small difference is an exciting development for the young big man.
  14. Pargo + Sloan > 800 minutes = disappointment – That duo combined for 704 minutes, prior to being usurped by Shaun Livingston, who was fun to watch.  Disappointment averted.
  15. Dion plays 23 minutes per game, with 9.5 points and 2.6 assists – Per minute, I was in the ballpark; I expected Miles to start and Waiters to serve as the sixth man.
  16. He plays less than 10 minutes several times, due to “doghouse” duty – Pulled several times for poor defense or shot selection, Waiters never went through a spell where he was glued to the bench.  I expected the frustrating play evidenced by the rookie in December, but his leash never got too short, and he appeared to learn some valuable lessons regardless.
  17. Coach Scott never loses sight of Dion’s potential – Undoubtedly true; an odd prediction in hindsight.
  18. Omri Casspi starts 25 games – He met this threshold each of his first three years in the league, obviously he was glued to the bench this year.  I expected a rebound towards his rookie levels, but that did not develop.
  19. He shoots 36+% from three – again an anticipated return to his Sac-town days, but no dice.
  20. Jon Leuer mixes nights of high quality ball, with frustrating displays of wimpi-ness – Actually, I meant to say Tyler Zeller (stupid auto-correct).  Leuer never managed anything productive in Cleveland.  His PER in Memphis is 14.1 though.  That makes his career track record over the last four years: Memphis 14.1; Cleveland 3.3; DLeague 20.1; Milwaukee 15.3; Eurocup 19.4; NCAA 28.7; NCAA 30.2.  A reasonable pattern emerges with one exception…
  21. He will be back in Cleveland in 2013 – 2014 – Not so much.   I intended to say Wayne Ellington will be with the Cavs next season…stupid auto-correct!
  22. This year is Samardo’s final in Cleveland – Yes!  One for Twenty-two.  At roulette, I would be a winner!
  23. Anderson Varejao suits-up 73 times for the Wine & Gold – Yeah, so, I meant, uhhh “wears a suit 73 times for Wine & Gold.”  Next season, play him 20 – 25 minutes per night, and never 4 times in 5 nights.  If he doesn’t stay on the court, then I give up.
  24. He pays $15000 in flopping related fines – I can’t recall any fines for Andy.  In 73 games though; who knows?
  25. Cavs fans quit talking about trading him, as we gear up for the 2014 playoff push – Not sure this happened, but given his current status as “injury prone”, he is almost certainly worth more to Cleveland than other teams.  Limit his minutes next year.
  26. Zeller averages 10 & 6 with 54% True Shooting – Eight and Six with Fifty Percent?  Oops.  In his last 28 games (one-third of a season), the TS increases to 56+%.  I’m holding out hope for a leap next year, TZ!
  27. He makes second team All-Rookie – This could still happen, right?  Tyler ranks 4th of rookies in minutes played, 2nd for total rebounds, 6th for blocks, 1st for personal fouls, 11th for points scored, and 11th for win shares.  Only one of those things is definitely bad, right?
  28. Alonzo Gee makes the ESPN daily top-ten seven times – This was exactly right; I keep a log of these things.
  29. Kyrie is featured twenty-seven times – Also right on the mark…send me a check and I will predict your future.
  30. Cleveland is repeatedly mentioned in rumors as the third team in a big trade, but nothing happens – This was more or less right.
  31. They draft 9, 26, 35 and 39 – There is a lot of wrong here.  Everyone thought the Lakers would be good though, didn’t they?
  32. A draft day trade will occur – This is correct, or at least you can’t disprove it.
  33. Cleveland makes a big free agent signing or trade prior to 2013 – 2014 – Not sure about this one, but betting on what Chris Grant will do is a good way to go broke.  Next year is definitely the time for the master plan to start flourishing.

Pre-season predictions are a fool’s errand, leaving them right up my alley.  As this season spirals into unwatch-ableness, we can start dreaming of the draft and predictions for next year.