“Whatever Happens, Happens.”


The Cavaliers were decimated by the Nets Wednesday night.

The Cavaliers are not a very good basketball team. The Cavs lack in star talent and depth at nearly every position other than point guard, and the remarkable Herculoids have faded down the stretch. However, no NBA team should lose games as badly as the Cavs did last night. The final deficit was only 18, but anyone who watched the game would tell you that the game was much worse than that number would indicate. The Nets led by around 30 for much of the “contest,” and the action consisted mostly of wide-open jumpers, the monotony occasionally broken by free throw attempts for Brooklyn. I’ll keep the game action recap brief.

First Half:

The Nets outscore the Cavaliers by eight in the first quarter. Marshon Brooks makes it clear that he sold his soul to the devil in exchange for Andre Toney’s jumper. Deron Williams also plays well. As the second quarter starts, the slaughter begins. Seven minutes into the quarter the deficit is 17, soulless Marshon continues to dominate, and Jerry Stackhouse dunks all over the Cavaliers. By the way, he’s 38. Deron Williams scores 11 in the last three minutes of the second, and the Cavs trail by 30 at the half. BKN 66, CLE 36.

Second Half:

The third quarter starts out a little bit better, thank God(s?). Kyrie dishes a few assists, devilish Brooks finally misses a few shots, and with 7:50 left in the quarter the Cavaliers have battled back to within 27. Brooklyn hurriedly calls a timeout, as the panicked Nets snipe at each other about defensive rotations and missed shots. The young Cavs snarl, smelling blood. The chase is on. Unfortunately, at the end of the third the lead remains 27. The fourth quarter is the definition of bad basketball. Tornike Shengelia (That’s a real person, I promise), Mirza Teletovic (Didn’t the Cavs look into signing this guy?), Chris “Funny Ears” Quinn, and Omri “Am I Even On This Team Anymore?” Casspi all make appearances. Final Score: BKN 113, CLE 95.

The pervading storyline from this game will be Byron Scott’s future, or lack thereof, with the Cavaliers. Losses are expected, accepted and perhaps beneficial this late in the season. However, no one wants to see the Cavs get run out of their own gym, and home losses this bad usually come back to the coach. After the game, Scott said “The energy, the effort wasn’t there — for whatever reason.” I agree with him– Cleveland looked flat and uninspired all night. But whose fault is that, if not the coach’s? Byron Scott may be on the way out of Cleveland. As he said regarding his job, “Whatever happens, happens.” If that’s how Scott feels, than he should by all means allow the Cavs to keep losing like they did tonight. But if he has any interest in coaching Kyrie Irving, Dion Waiters and Tristan Thompson in the playoffs next year, he’d better make some adjustments.

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Cory Hughey
Editor
5 years 6 months ago
Most major additions to this team will probably come via trade rather than free agency. I’m all for the three years at the top of the lottery plan. After this years draft they should have an idea of what they want to keep around for the core of the team for the long term and what still needs addressed. Some of Grant’s picks will get traded. He’s going to have to make shrewd decisions within the next two years on who to extend for the long haul. Kyrie is obviously one of them. Dion or Tristan is probably the other. It’s possible one of them gets moved in a big fish deal. @Casey I doubt most people in this forum think Lebron returning is a lock. I certainly don’t think the Heat will be title favorites 3+ years from now. Once Wade loses his athleticism he’ll be a shell of his former self. It’s coming in the next two years. Miami is insanely limited on how much they can improve from here. No player on that team today will be better in three years. None. Lebron is at his apex. He’ll probably be there for another couple seasons. Wade and… Read more »
Whamwiththerighthand
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Whamwiththerighthand
5 years 6 months ago

Agree with Aksel and T. I wish there was a way to “like” comments so that we could gauge the pulse of the more passive readers of this site.

Cols714
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Cols714
5 years 6 months ago

Gordon
Yep. And the thing is no one is advocating for only building through the draft. Not anyone on this site, not Chris Grant, not Byron Scott, etc.

$ (aka Bill)
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$ (aka Bill)
5 years 6 months ago

I’m glad the Cavs owners are not like the owners the Browns have had. Every year or two it’s a new coach, new quarterback, new defense. Nobody gets a chance to prove themselves.

Mallory’s argument of wanting to build a team through free agency/trades is bunk because no team is going to give up their best guys in a trade and no big free agent has ever signed with Cleveland (the closest we had was Larry Hughes, ha). Every team is trying to win and unless you’re LA, NY, Chicago, or similar big market teams, you’re just not going to be able to sign free agents at a reasonable price. Good teams resign their good players. The guys in free agency are fill-in pieces, not championship-winning players.

But why am I saying this? Everybody here recognizes this… except for the authors of the blog

Gordon
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Gordon
5 years 6 months ago
Mallory – your comment about not wanting the team to puts all of its proverbial “eggs” in one basket (aka building through the draft) is a bit misguided. I agree that you cannot 100% build through the draft – that would entail never signing any FA’s and having a team filled with only your own draft picks. But, in order to build a strong team in this league, you must hit on your draft picks (or be an LA or Boston who can lure top tier FA’s year in and year out). For us, we cannot and will never be able to build a contender by throwing money at FA’s every opportunity we get. I agree with you that we should not build strictly through the draft. We need to complement our young core with talented FA signing. However, if you use your cap space to bring in veterans too soon, you are lowering your team’s ceiling and weakening its ability to draft talent. We absolutely needed 3 drafts with top 5 picks. Luckily for us, we landed one of the rare, sure-fire “franchise” players in Kyrie. Dion is developing, as is Tristan. This year, we need to hit on… Read more »
casey
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casey
5 years 6 months ago

People on this blog are way way way to optimistic, besides mallory who seems to have realistic expectations. Everyone else seems to think that the cavs are going to be able to all the sudden win games next year and get a 7 or 8 seed, and then sign lebron the year after. Sorry Lebron is not going anywhere as long as hes winning championships and i don’t see a team in the leauge that is going to be able to stop the heat the next 3+ years. I don’t understand how some of you fans are happy with one good game every once in a while and its enough for you to say “well the future is bright”. not so much. The cavs will be a 7 or 8 seed for years to come unless we are able by some sort of miracle get Lebron.

Cory Hughey
Editor
5 years 6 months ago
I don’t think any of us are pleased with the turnout of the season. I expected more. Maybe 30 victories if they would have stayed healthy. This is a season that we can only measure by developmental silver linings. There are plenty of reasons they won’t win more than 25 games this year. Every team deals with injuries, but I it effects younger teams much worse than more established teams. The Spurs can win without Tony Parker. The Bulls can win without Rose. The Celtics can win without Rondo. They can because they have a core of veterans to rely on. The Cavs without their starting backcourt have a pair of young bigs and a group of NBA pass around girls. The Cavs lost Andy months ago and had time to figure out how to play without him. Losing Kyrie and Dion was the death blow along with the Miami loss. The Herculoids are showing that they might have peaked as a unit. I’ve said for weeks I’m glad that they probably won’t all be back. Ellington is the only one I really want back. Miles is under team control for another year and he’s a bargain. Speights is what… Read more »
$ (aka Bill)
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$ (aka Bill)
5 years 6 months ago

Adam-

Very good post and gave me a good laugh

mallory vs. everybody else

$ (aka Bill)
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$ (aka Bill)
5 years 6 months ago

Ctown-

you said it right

Mallory Factor
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5 years 6 months ago

T –

I completely agree. The other worrisome development is just how much more natural Kyrie and Dion look when the other isn’t on the court. Some of that has to be blamed on Scott.

T
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T
5 years 6 months ago
Losing in the big picture is expected given the early search for the next Alonzo Gee off the D-league/waiver wire slag heap and obviously the injuries. But if you watch the games, its hard not to see Scotts coaching deficiencies in the X’s-O’s and rotation departments, even for the laymen. Time to stop giving Scott a pass just because he was lucky enouh to find himself a part of the showtime Lakers. His supporters can make all the excuses they want, but the hard fact is that two good teams have quit on him beacause they didn’t believe he was competent stategist. Forget the W’s and L’s for a moment….When was the last time you saw the Cavs execute an inbounds play that actually created an open shot? How many times have you seen the weakside defenders know where to fill in when help is needed, instead of drifting to the elbow while a wide open shot is created on the opposite side of the floor? How many third quarters start off with the exact same 3 plays we open the game with..except now that the defense has seen them for 24 minutes, they know exactly where to clog them… Read more »
Kj
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Kj
5 years 6 months ago

Askel is a sock puppet! LOL!

Aksel
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Aksel
5 years 6 months ago

this is a great blog with great writers. they have wonderful narrative skills, carefully thought out arguments and diverse perspectives.

and on occasion the comments are maddening: paranoia, conspiracy, personal attack. i commend the authors for taking the high road.

Adam
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Adam
5 years 6 months ago

Well I lost an hour of productivity attempting to read all of these comments…

Mallory – What have you gained from freaking out like this? Think the cavs are gonna call you up and be like, I read your 100 comments on the ESPN blog about an random awful game we played in March when our team was eliminated from having any reason to give effort on the court and decimated by injuries. Heres a job offer to be assistant GM…

You guys have made the same points back and forth over and over again…

Mallory thinks the team needs to sign expensive veteren (highly efficient and defensive minded) FA’s this offseason and fire Byron Scott, and is extremely disappointed with the amount of wins this season and especially the last 16 games

Everybody else thinks the team was supposed to lose this season and is unhappy with this game but overall happy with the progress individual players have made this season, and excited about our future with a much different looking, albiet astoundingly young roster going forward

Ok, there u go, can everybody chill… go have a beer, think of something more interesting to type about?

TV63
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TV63
5 years 6 months ago

@Cols714 Lol “Trolling his own blog” was pretty funny but I certainly can relate to his disappointmentin some of these games and failure to improve at defense. Agh! What can we do? Nothing really. Cavs organization needs to do some probing if Scott has lost the locker room. I hope not. Time will tell.

Korey
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Korey
5 years 6 months ago

No (s?) necessary. There is only 1.

Also, it’d be nice if the effin Suns would win a game.

Mallory Factor II
Editor
5 years 6 months ago
Rich and Ctown – I never once “gave up” on Tristan. I argued, correctly, that Tristan was incredibly raw and under performing. Even now I think there’s a tendency to overrated his value. Which is fine, you’re a fan of his team. I’m not going to sugarcoat serious deficiencies if they exist. But all that being said, I certainly never saw a reason to “give up” on him. That’ll come next year (ha). Guys, I don’t see myself as negative. I’m HAPPY to celebrate when there’s a reason to, and I have done so more often than not. But there is no reason to celebrate now, at this moment. You can be passive, that’s completely your prerogative, but I think you guys are wrong in discouraging others for displaying displeasure with the last 16 games. Rich, I hope I’m wrong. I really do. But so far I haven’t been given an explicit reason to believe I am. When Kyrie, Dion, Tristan, Tyler, and whomever is drafted next year start putting together 45 win seasons, I’ll gladly say “Thank goodness Grant put this team together like this.” But right now that’s not the case.
Rich
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Rich
5 years 6 months ago

Now, since this season is over and we’re talking about trying to actually win, as an organization, next season, who’s up for raiding the Warriors bench? Jack and Landry are both FAs this year (Landry can opt out) and so is Rush (who has been hurt). I’d be alright with any combination of those guys (although if we keep Ellington, no need to bring in Rush) personally. Jack and Landry have been a big reason Golden State has improved so much this season.

Rich
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Rich
5 years 6 months ago

C-Town has it right. You give up on players so very easily, Mallory. Imagine if you were running the show. There would be almost no stability ever. You’ve got to actually give this franchise a chance. It’s year 2. Next year, unleash your wrath if things don’t turn around. I’ll be right there with you.

ctown27
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ctown27
5 years 6 months ago

“I’ve said this a ton already today, but I’m going to say it one more time – as a fan of this team, don’t you want to see tangible improvements?”

our young players are improving. patience is needed for a rebuild. players don’t improve in a linear fashion, it comes in fits and starts and it occurs over the first 5 -7 years of their career. last year and into the first part of this year you gave up on tristan. you’ve given up on zeller and coach scott too. I and many others think you are wrong. it can’t be very much fun to always be so negative. why be a fan if you can’t surrender to hope and optimism now and then?

Rich
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Rich
5 years 6 months ago
But who exactly was there to add that would have made this team a contender, or a contender by next season? Who exactly are you thinking of? Because here’s the cold, hard truth of the matter. As long as LeBron James is in his prime and in the East, whatever team he’s on is the favorite and beating that team is unlikely. Ok? That’s bleak, but its true. So going out and spending like crazy isn’t going to fix that problem. And I have seen tangible improvements. I’ve laid them over the course of this thread. They are there. They are real. You just avoid them at all costs. And I’m sorry, but disappointed I am not. I knew what was coming this way when I saw the first few games and the bench that had been assembled. I knew full well that it was designed to be bad and there was a reason for it. And Mallory, maybe some of us are being too optimistic, but you’ve always been to negative. Remember the start of the season, when you wanted us to be the damn Bobcats? How you were praising them and killing the Cavs? You’ve always been quick… Read more »
Rich
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Rich
5 years 6 months ago

Look, I’ll end it with this.

This roster was designed to lose at the start of the year. You go into a season with Donald Sloan as your back-up PG and your back-up PF is a mix of Luke Walton and Samardo Samuels, you’re trying to lose games.

In the middle of the year, the FO made a trade, not to win, but to acquire another draft pick. It resulted in a more competent bench. We were a .500 team. Then two of our three best players got hurt, with our second best player already hurt, and we started to lose again. But that should not override what we saw in February, when we had a competent bench and a fairly healthy starting 5.

Now, if you are of the mind of Mallory, and you wanted to win, then ok. But your anger had better reach out further than just Scott. It should reach to Gilbert and Grant, who collectively told you at the start of the season that losing WAS the goal. You knew that going in. You should have been upset with them then.

Mallory Factor II
Editor
5 years 6 months ago
Rich – I want NO approach that puts all the eggs into a single basket. From the start I think building a team entirely around the draft was a horrible idea. Unless the Cavaliers win a championship with only the guys they drafted, I’ll continue to believe that. I’m not advocating irresponsible spending, I’m advocating a diverse team of youth, vets, and depth. Currently, and for the last three years, that’s been missing. It’s clear that Grant and Gilbert want to take this approach and will live (and die) by it, but that doesn’t mean it’s the smartest way to do it. Jason Lloyd from the ABJ was just on ESPN radio and commented that there’s a VERY high likelihood (his phrasing, not mine) this does not work out. But regardless, this organization is determined to ride it out because they think it’s the best way to go. I strongly disagree with the assessment that this is the best way to go, largely because there’s never been indication that a ton of losing works. Just because you saw TT have a good game, and Dion played well for a stretch does not a championship contender make. I understand the patience… Read more »
CJ
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5 years 6 months ago
“It’s awful how the authors of this blog continue with the theme “all is lost, the team is on the wrong track” Totally, agree with you, $. You too, Rich. You too, cols. I agree with anyone that agrees with any combination of them. If you agree with $ and Rich, I agree with you. Wholeheartedly. If you agree with Rich and cols, I most certainly agree with what you are saying. If you agree with cols and Rich (the reverse order) you might be surprised to find……that I agree with you! This blog is so negative all the time – again, agreed, $. You guys should all write for this blog. I agree that you guys should all write for this blog. I also agree that there are so many positive blog outlets for our beloved Cleveland Cavaliers. Why does this blog’s theme have to be negative? I don’t agree with that. -“Tristan Thompson is a finalist for the J. Walter Kennedy Award “given annually by the Pro Basketball Writers Association to the player, coach or trainer who shows outstanding service and dedication to the community.” Go on, Tristan.” [April 2] -“The Cavs fought pretty hard considering how decimated… Read more »
Rich
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Rich
5 years 6 months ago

So then not only can I not trust what guys like Kyrie and Tristan say about Scott, but I also can’t trust what my eyes tell me about Dion and Thompson?

See, Mallory, what you want everyone else to do is get into panic mode with you. Fire the coach, hate the draft picks, sign Danny Granger in the off-season! Just not going to happen. I think you are categorically wrong on this and I believe it will be proven next season.

ctown27
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ctown27
5 years 6 months ago

what do you mean?

Rich
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Rich
5 years 6 months ago

I don’t know nor do I care. 42 games is not enough time to make any rash judgments about whether or not the two can play together and whether or not the coach can fix any issues that might exist between them.

Cody
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Cody
5 years 6 months ago

The most significant injury this season is obviously Andy

Mallory Factor II
Editor
5 years 6 months ago

Ctown –

Would you be on board with a 21 year old throwing his coach under the bus?

Cody
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Cody
5 years 6 months ago

Gordon

The most significant this season is obviously Andy. Before he went out, the Cavs were 5-21, and the defense was the worst in the league. To this day, it still is. Not having Andy really doesn’t account for that. The Cavs are unable to handle most offensive sets by the opponent. On offense, it’s not much better. Ball movement is rare. They rank 25th as a team in assists. Whether you’re winning games or not, things like this needed to improve during the season.

I don’t think Byron is telling them to not move the ball or lose your man on defense for the purposes of tanking. For whatever reason, what he’s doing isn’t working.

ctown27
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ctown27
5 years 6 months ago
When the team you care about and root for is losing, it is frustrating. It is easy to blame the coach because he’s the guy who is here, making the decisions. However somebody has to fill that role and make those decisions and on a young, injured, crappy team like the cavs, those aren’t very fun decisions to make. For those who want to replace scott: who would you like to replace him? the only thing that matters about this season was developing our young players. If the cavs are going to be a championship team one day, kyrie and dion will lead the way. I cannot think of anybody I would rather coach our 2 twenty year old guards for the first few years of their career than coach scott. A guy who has won some ships. Who played with magic. who coached up cpaul and jkid. The work ethic coach scott installs in these guys, the attitude he instills in them, the way they approach the game will shape the rest of their careers. Dion looked like he could be a knucklehead in the wrong situation. Imagine if he was in Sacramento or phoenix. I think scott is… Read more »
Mallory Factor II
Editor
5 years 6 months ago

Rich –

How many of those 42 games did they win?

Rich
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Rich
5 years 6 months ago

Just looked this up. Dion and Kyrie have played 42 games together.

42.

And you tell me Scott hasn’t managed to fix their issues with playing together. Forty-two games, Mallory. C’mon.

Your expectations are just unrealistic, across the board.

Mallory Factor II
Editor
5 years 6 months ago

Rich –

The Cavs, during their win streak, had one of the most efficient/effective benches in the NBA. You absolutely cannot dismiss that as a major part of Feb. It’ll be almost impossible to replicate that effectiveness next season.

I’ve happily acknowledged improvement from Dion and TT, but I disagree with your assessment of how great that improvement was and is. TT had a phenomenal month, but has essentially regressed to a mediocre offensive player with a decent D game. Dion is an absolute stud, but he has major problems playing with Kyrie (something that Scott doesn’t seem to be able to fix, by the way). Kyrie has essentially stagnated this year – not nec a cause for concern, but absolutely something to watch.

Youth is absolutely an excuse, and a major reason why the Cavaliers continue to lose. Injuries are as well. But There’s an overall feeling that permeates this Cavaliers team and many fans – the idea that “Oh well, at some point it’ll click.” Byron essentially said that in interviews, and there’s no question it’s rubbed off on players.

I cannot get on board with that mindset.

Gordon
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Gordon
5 years 6 months ago

Cody – the only problem with improving as a team all along, this season, is that 1) it really wasn’t possible considering the roster overhaul mid season along with the injuries all season and 2) while in theory it would be great to improve as a team and win games, we MUST have a top 3-5 pick (and I really believe top 3 this season) in order to build a perennial contender.

Rich
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Rich
5 years 6 months ago

Guys, guys, when the team is obliterated by injury, improvement is going to be hard to see.

First of all, let’s take the 3 best players off of any team in this league for any amount of time. How well does that team do? And that’s basically what we’ve had the last 10 or so games. We’ve been w/o our 3 best players. I mean you can’t just plug in Wayne Ellington, Tyler Zeller, and Shaun Livingston and pretend that these guys can step in and do what Irving, Varejao, and Waiters do.

Furthermore, let’s not pretend contract situations don’t matter. These bench players, specifically a couple of them (Gibson and Speights) know their time is limited. They are on a team playing for nothing and for a coach they probably don’t like. That stuff effects the rest of the team. They aren’t playing all that hard and it shows. There is no getting around stuff like that. It’s just the way it is.

alex
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alex
5 years 6 months ago

Agree with rich, keep up the good work guys.

AtlantaRob
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AtlantaRob
5 years 6 months ago

Will someone Call Jerry Sloan already?

alex
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alex
5 years 6 months ago

Does anyone remember that Anderson varajeo has been injured this whole time, our second best player, we were destroyed by injuries, now everyone expects a better team.

Rich
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Rich
5 years 6 months ago
Here’s the thing Mallory, Dion Waiters just won rookie of the month of February. It is quite obvious those 2-6,1-6 games were becoming more and more infrequent as the season went on. You want to go back and include the whole season to tell us the Waiters story of his rookie year, and that’s fine. But it totally misses the point, which is this, he was IMPROVING, and it was obvious, as evidenced by his Rookie of the Month award. Now, do you remember the start of the season? When the starting unit looked really good and would play with anybody, only to have that bench, the worst bench ever assembled, come in and blow it? Yea, that was a lack of talent. Right there. Caused by the front office, on purpose. That was with Varejao Now, we added a competent group of bench players. Not great, mind you. I mean, Luke Walton isn’t going to go get minutes anywhere else but here. Wayne Ellington is probably playing well over his head right now, too. But anyway, we added these guys, and suddenly we were a .500 team, without Varejao. Then Kyrie and Dion get hurt and boom goes the… Read more »
Cody
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Cody
5 years 6 months ago

Gordon,

In total agreement save one comment:

“Improve as a TEAM over the course of the season” – This should have been happening all along. There’s no reason team improvement has to wait until next season. Given that we haven’t seen it this year, it’s a risky assumption to expect it next year.

Mallory Factor II
Editor
5 years 6 months ago

Gordon –

By that logic, the Cavs were essentially good for the middle of January and February.

Gordon
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Gordon
5 years 6 months ago

Mallory – have we not been competitive for the ENTIRE season? Yes, we’ve lost a LOT of games, but we have been in almost every single game this year. We have competed with, and beaten, elite teams (OKC anyone?). We have shown the ability to hang with the best teams in the league when Kyrie, Waiters, and TT are playing well. Considering the severe drop off in talent to the rest of the team, it is no surprising, and it should not be demoralizing, that we lost the majority of the games we played.

We were highly competitive for the entire season – losing by 4 points or winning by 2 points is not the difference between being “competitive” and “not competitive”. Winning those games is a sign of being a GOOD team – which we are not right now. But we have definitely been competitive this season.

Gordon
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Gordon
5 years 6 months ago

Our goal should be simple. Show individual improvement while losing games, and ensure you draft the best talent available. We have done just that this season. Kyrie has now recognized as a budding super star by everyone. Dion showed glimpses of elite ability. TT has improved GREATLY from last season. Yet, we’ve continued to lose games – which is THE best thing we could be doing this season.

Come away with Noel or Porter, and now you have a young core in the mix of OKC. Next season is where you’d like to see them win games, and we should not be concerned with draft position at all. Improve as a TEAM over the course of the season, and then bring in a big time FA veteran (LeBron!) to be the final piece to a championship contender.

Winning games this season would be derailed a lot of that.

Gordon
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Gordon
5 years 6 months ago

Rich – could not agree with you more.

Mallory Factor
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5 years 6 months ago
Rich – Your eyes only tell you half the story. You’re looking at the 6-9 game, versus the MANY 2-6. 1-6, 3-12, etc. games. It’s fair to be excited about the future – I love what I see from Dion. But temper your excitement with reality. Not every player turns into what their ceiling is. Not every player becomes a star, and not every player will be great. Chances are these guys fall somewhere in between, but that’s not really good enough, and it’s why building through the draft is a crap shoot. I’ll say this too – a few weeks ago I went through the old comments from last spring/summer, and found many familiar names saying “this is it guys, next year the Cavs will compete for a 7-8 seed. They’re not going to be bottom dwellers anymore. Injuries only account for so much. Andy being gone only accounts for so much. Ultimately this is an argument of talent. And at this point, the Cavaliers are just not talented enough, or really, well coached enough, to complete night in and night out. Why everyone believes that suddenly the talent to compete will be there, particularly when I hear and… Read more »
Cols714
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Cols714
5 years 6 months ago

Rich
Right, these are really young players who have shown flashes of being pretty good. How is it so hard to see that?

Rich
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Rich
5 years 6 months ago

No, this was not supposed to be the year. I’m sorry, but when your big off-season moves are to sign CJ Miles and re-signing Alonzo Gee, that is NOT a team planning on doing whatever it is you thought they should be doing. You were a year ahead.

And why exactly should they not pick anywhere near there? Again, I don’t understand what it is you think a group of 20 year olds is supposed to be able to accomplish this early in their careers? LeBron James stands alone as a 20 year old capable of fully carrying a team to the playoffs. I can think of no one else who would have been able to do that. This is how a group of young players is going to look. Disjointed and rugged.

Cols714
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Cols714
5 years 6 months ago

Dani
I don’t think so. Mallory is moving toward’s trolling his own blog. He can’t really believe what he’s saying.

Rich
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Rich
5 years 6 months ago

I’m using my eyes. Which tell me that Thompson and Dion have shown great improvement over the course of just this year. I mean, I guess I can assume they will plateau at what they are right now. But, why would I do that? Why would I take that outlook on it, when their trajectory has been upward?

Mallory Factor
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5 years 6 months ago

Dani –

I agree with you completely. This was supposed to be the year the Cavs were ACTUALLY competitive, had a taste of success, and showed they can take the pressure. I’m not sure we’ve seen any of that. You can blame youth/talent/drive or you can blame coaching, but it’s got to be one of those two things.

Mallory Factor
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5 years 6 months ago

Rich –

The Cavaliers are NOT Washington or Toronto. They have THREE, SOON TO BE FOUR, TOP FOUR PICKS. There is NO other team in the NBA with that many 20-22 year olds picked that high. At this point the Cavaliers should not pick anywhere NEAR there.

Dani
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Dani
5 years 6 months ago

$, you just moved into troll territory. Try to avoid personal attacks.

Rich
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Rich
5 years 6 months ago

Yea, Mallory, it does. Because I’ve seen the playoff stuff. That’s nice and all, but we are Cleveland fans. We want a damn title. And I know that one path will absolutely lead to not titles. The other path, which was build from the ground up and take our time while preserving cap space to try and make the big move is the BEST path to eventually winning a title. Which is what I want.

Had this team went out and picked up Marcin Gortat/Nene/Rudy Gay and the list of free agent disasters, I’d have been EXTREMELY upset, because I would understand that only hinders our options to eventually win a title, not help them. Does it win us a few more regular season games? Sure. Does it actually get us any closer to a title? No. It moves us further away.

Now, I fully expect the franchise to start moving towards winning next season. If they don’t, I’ll be right there complaining with you. But I EXPECTED this. I wanted this. It’s a fundamental difference between you and I. I wanted the rebuild to go exactly like this. I’m fully ok with it.

Mallory Factor
Guest
5 years 6 months ago

$ –

It’s absolutely impossible to plan for 2017-2020 – There’s no way Grant or Gilbert is looking that far ahead. One FA signing can change everything, salaries can change everything, player development changes everything.

You seem to be assuming that Dion, TT, and whoever is drafted this year become good. Why?

And Cleveland isn’t a competitive team. In what world is 22-52 competitive?

$ (aka Bill)
Guest
$ (aka Bill)
5 years 6 months ago

Don’t really jump off a bridge Mallory. We appreciate you writing even if your ideas are silly and your patience is non-existent.

Dani
Guest
Dani
5 years 6 months ago

Am I the only one who doesn’t see it as likely that we go from a bottom-feeder to a championship contender in one season? Let’s start with playoffs. A 6 or 7 seed would be fine with me. Perpetually? Of course not. But outside of Lebron, we aren’t getting that good that fast. And since when is it awful to be an 8-seed? The Knicks were the 8-seed last year, a 2-seed this year.

Rich
Guest
Rich
5 years 6 months ago

Dammit, last post eaten by the comment monster. Always remember to copy what you type before hitting submit on this site. Sigh.

Tom Pestak
Admin
5 years 6 months ago

Don’t worry, Rich. I’m rescuing everyone’s comments.

Mallory Factor
Guest
5 years 6 months ago

Rich –

As a fan, does hearing that your favorite franchise wants to be one of the five worst team for three straight years make you happy?

I think the whole “not adding FAs” argument is moot at this point – the goal should be to not lose anymore. Adding any and all FAs, as long as they’re not being overpaid for LONG contracts, makes a ton of sense. Losing like this does not help young teams.

Rich
Guest
Rich
5 years 6 months ago
See, here’s the thing. We had two paths. One of them was this path. Let the young play a lot, give them little to no veteran help, and what happens happens. Keep our cap space and shoot for more picks. Or, we could have gone the Washington/Toronto route. Add a TON of salary via trades and free agent signings with the goal of sneaking into the playoffs. Of course, those two teams have failed miserably so now here they are, also picking the in the lottery (only with a worse pick), with a ton of salary on the books for multiple years into the future, and very few future assets (Toronto has been great at trading away their draft picks left and right, as well as their promising young players like Ed Davis). Who would you rather be? Us or them? Because here’s the thing, had we went out and got Rudy Gay or added Nene/Okafor last season, we’d be a few games better, but still not in the playoffs this year (due to the other injures) and then what? We’d have less draft picks, no cap space, and a future contingent upon Rudy Gay/Nene/Okafor suddenly improving from what they’ve… Read more »
$ (aka Bill)
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$ (aka Bill)
5 years 6 months ago

Gordon- Good point. The big picture is unfortunately 2 years away at least. Kyrie, TT and Dion will be 22-23 then and still a few years from being in their primes. We should have a competitive team in the meantime but really unless Lebron comes back or we sign a dominant player, Kyrie will be in his prime and (hopefully) ready to win a championship sometime between 2017-2020. That’s tough but it’s the truth. Mallory will probably have jumped off a bridge by then screaming “YOU SHOULD’VE SIGNED LUIS SCOLA AND LUOL DENG!”

Rich
Guest
Rich
5 years 6 months ago
If you dont’ feel being 22-52 is ok, then you must have totally disagreed with the rebuilding plan, then, correct? Because the Front Office made it clear they wanted to lose this year. This was obvious from their own statements and from the off-season acquisitions. Losing was a priority. And that’s fine. You can feel that way. I happen to disagree with you. I thought maintaining cap space (which translates into not adding any good free agent players) was the right move. I felt that if, somehow by a stroke of magic, the young guys on the team managed to go win games and sneak into the playoffs, so be it, but I was ok with the organization not helping them get there this season. I expected to lose. I, ultimately, wanted to lose. So yea, I’m ok with 22-52. Would I have been ok with it had we remained healthy? No. I liked seeing the late season improvements that we saw in February. But then people got hurt and stuff changed. That doesn’t change what I saw from a fairly healthy team in February. I know THAT team can play. And I know that if the Front Office changes… Read more »
Mallory Factor
Guest
5 years 6 months ago

$ –

Competing for the 7th or 8th seed would’ve been a big jump. Sitting as one of the 5 worst teams in the NBA is a step back.

Injuries are an easy excuse, But Kyrie and Dion were each only missing for a few games during the last 16, and there’s no way that Dion makes a 30 point difference, which is what the Cavs were losing by last night before the Nets eased up.

I’m not arguing that being bad doesn’t give you the opportunity to draft a young stud. But the idea that the Cavaliers can only become good if they draft 4 top five players, 2 additional top 20, and then add Lebron, is silly.

Cody
Guest
Cody
5 years 6 months ago

@ Rich

Was just about to say the same thing about the first year. That was not really part of a rebuild as much as it was a dismantling. Not fair at all to hold that against Byron.

Also, your comments about how no one is to blame are spot on. If the Cavs were vying for a playoff spot, they would have picked up some FA as Washington did. However, we know that would have cast them as a 7seed with no cap space. Unfortunately though, the losing has a consequence. IMO, he’s lost the locker room. It’s not all his fault. He was handed a bad situation, and injuries made it worse.

I’m not advocating letting him go. But it would make sense, even if it is unfair. Lots of successful coaches have been replaced for similar situations: Paul Westphal, Bob Hill, Avery Johnson, Donnie Nelson.

$ (aka Bill)
Guest
$ (aka Bill)
5 years 6 months ago

Mallory and the other guys here arguing that the Cavs are on the wrong track… What can we do to get a championship team faster? Who do you want to realistically hire to coach the team? What players are you going to convince to come here?

The only ideas I’ve heard are trade our draft picks for Jared Dudley and Marcin Gortat, or get Andre Igoudala. Those guys aren’t winning any championships. If memory serves me right, those guys haven’t even gotten out of the first round of the playoffs as starters.

The authors here are quick to insult the team but shallow on ideas of how to fix it. Patience is a virtue. There’s nothing to be done to accelerate the process of players developing.

Mallory Factor
Guest
5 years 6 months ago
Rich – Teams deal with injuries, teams deal with youth, more often than not, when, in the face of all those things, teams continue to lose by disgusting amounts (and the Cavs haven’t been remotely competitive during many of these games) then something is clearly wrong. Why you refuse to acknowledge that confuses me – why is it OK to be 22-52? The Cavaliers are 2-14 in the last 16 games (since the beginning of March). Injuries are bad and all, but 2-14??? Yes, 21 year old players are young, but you make this assumption that players never plateau, never take steps back, etc. etc. Not to say I believe they will, but it’s not as though when watching the Cavaliers this year, they showed MANY MANY sparks of why they’re going to make the playoffs next year. As Tom has pointed out many times, a bunch of those Feb Ws came from the bench. Losing like this is never good for a young team. It’s a horrible cycle. Now the young guys don’t care, and they’re losing faith in the coaching staff and front office. Byron’s job is to make sure that DOESN’T happen.
Gordon
Guest
Gordon
5 years 6 months ago
For anyone here to believe the “big picture” looks bleak because our beat up team is getting beat, needs to be realistic and understand the big picture is still 2 years away. Hit on our top 5 pick this year, and then use the plethora of cap space in 2014 to add the supporting cast and we WILL be a great team. I know our bench played well there for a month or so, but you are kidding yourselves if you actually thought we had the talent and depth to be a real, competitive ball club. We’ve seen this team at its best when we were playing +.500 ball for a few weeks, relatively healthy (minus AV), and the strides Dion and TT were making. Considering the lack of overall talent and age of this team, that was very good. It is unrealistic to expect them to do that for a prolonged period of time. If next year we are healthy, including AV, and are 22-52 at this point, I agree we may need a coaching change. But if we are fighting for a playoff spot, we’ll be right on pace with what OKC did when they were building through… Read more »
$ (aka Bill)
Guest
$ (aka Bill)
5 years 6 months ago
Mallory, no one expected us to be 22-52 but no one expected us to be so devastated with injuries. If the Heat were missing their top three players for a long stretch, they’d look awful too. It doesn’t matter how good a team is, if your best guys aren’t on the court, you’re going to lose a lot of games. We are a middle of the road team (with lots of potential) that has simply been devastated by injuries. I don’t know who thought this year was going to be a big jump. I thought that the best case scenario was an 7th or 8th seed if everyone stayed healthy. These things take time. Our franchise player was 20 years old this season. Yes, Kyrie needs to man up and play defense. Byron needs to get the defense working. He’s trying to figure it out, recently going to a zone. Maybe the answer is to hire a new defensive coordinator. Zeller needs to hit the gym. Andy needs to stay healthy. But, everything that is wrong with the team can be fixed. They’re working on it. What more can be done? The authors here seem to favor grabbing Andre Igoudala… Read more »
Rich
Guest
Rich
5 years 6 months ago
Ah, yes, I mean it isn’t like Dion has been hurt during this 10 game losing streak, is it? And it isn’t like Kyrie missed 8 of the 10. No, no, that didn’t happen. I mean, you honestly just argued that if these players (specifically Dion and Thompson) were improving then we wouldn’t be on a 10 game losing streak while somehow missing the fact that one of those very players has been hurt during most of the streak. Just….I dunno about you sometimes. And exactly how do you think rookie development works? They go from finding there way in the first 40 to reaching 20 PER in the final 40? I mean your expectations of the young guys are, and have always been so unrealistic. Are you telling me Dion Waiters has not shown SIGNIFICANT improvement from the beginning of the year up until the point he got hurt? Are you telling me the same about Thompson? If that’s your argument, go ahead and make it, but then we have another problem, don’t we. We have a group of guys that you don’t think will be any good and considering we’ve used 2 lottery picks on them, that basically… Read more »
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