Posts Tagged ‘Andrew Wiggins’

The Point Four-ward: Empty the Bench

Wednesday, February 25th, 2015

-b84c6ac157783576

First off, if you haven’t read Ben’s excellent recap of the Cavs win in Detroit last night, please do yourself that favor. Then, it’s onto—

Four points I’m thinking about the Cleveland Cavaliers…

1.) On a recent Cavs telecast, I heard something that gave me pause. It concerned the overall league ranking for the Cavs bench. Anyone want to guess what it was?

Try 30th overall. That’s right, the Cavs bench is ranked dead last in the league averaging just 23.6 points per game according to hoopsstats.com. That is not something that inspires much confidence when talking about a team whose recent stretch of torrid play has vaulted it back in the thick of the championship contender conversation.

(more…)

The Point Four-ward: Keep Streak Alive!

Wednesday, February 4th, 2015

-66a49b7746e3f410

Four things I’m thinking about the NBA and the Cleveland Cavaliers…

1.) Thursday’s game against the Clippers will be a good measuring stick for these Cavs — and it comes at just the right time. The Cavs just played three of the worst teams in the league in the Sixers, Wolves and Kings and, while it would be unfair to say that the team has gotten bored of Avenge-a-palooza 2015, serving steaming piles of roundball comeuppance to a rogues gallery of disheartening losses, finally seeing a team that also plans to be playing deep into May and June (and one looking to avenge its own disheartening loss, a 126-121 Cavs win in L.A. on January 16th) is exactly what the Cavs need to resharpen their focus and keep this winning streak going.

Thus far, the Cavs have had some trouble piling it on against lesser 0pponents. Last Friday against Sacramento, the Cavs managed only 15 points in the fourth quarter, letting the Kings back into a game that should have been well out of reach. The next night in Minnesota, the young Wolves team (sporting the league’s worst defense) were actually leading the Cavs in the second half, before the Cavs defense (still sporting its new car smell) put the strangle hold on in the fourth. Then Monday night, those scrappy Sixers, got within two points in the fourth before Matthew Dellavedova stepped in to blow their candles out.

(more…)

Fantasy Notebook: Where LeBron’s Iso Ball is Just Fine By Me…

Monday, January 19th, 2015

ESPN-Hoops

CtFL Notes:

It’s no 2014-15 NBA Western Conference or anything, but Cavs: The Fantasy League is shaping up to be deeper and more competitive than it appeared as recently as a few weeks ago. The return of LeBron James has resuscitated my tailspinning Team Waiters Invaders, while Nate Smith’s Team Stark Delly Treys, Team Grover 13 and Team Evil Genius have all been putting together some fine fantasy basketball out on the fantasy court. These suddenly spry middle-packers raises questions about the true dominance of David Wood’s Team Alex Dirk just as Wood’s biggest competitor, Ben Werth’s Team The Deutschiest (first time this season I’ve typed that team name without looking at it for reference… We all got goals, people!) has hit the skids.

Along with Cols’ Team Buckets Don’t Lie, CtFL is a legit seven teams deep. Currently in the eighth spot, Mallory Factor and his Team The Factors of Love are on the outside looking in… kinda like Kevin Love watching the fourth quarter from the bench. Ouch. Sorry, Mal. Couldn’t resist.

But let’s get to our Week 12 action…

Wood, surveying the beautiful expanse that is CtFL from atop his ivory tower, was apparently looking past Team Evil Genius. Even as Wood was all like—

—EG was there to stand up for CtFL’s suddenly bulging middle section of talent.

Screen Shot 2015-01-19 at 9.36.19 AM

(more…)

Recap: Cavaliers 125, Timberwolves 104 (or, Three Minutes to Win It)

Wednesday, December 24th, 2014
Where's the page about taking a giant lead?

Where’s the page about taking a giant lead?

The Cavs came away with the decisive victory, but it cost more than they thought it would. Anderson Varejao went down with a leg injury in the third quarter and didn’t return to the game, and Andrew Wiggins showed exactly what an athletic wing can do to the Cavs. It took the King’s Men two and a half quarters to start caring for the ball and playing defense. Wiggins used all his opportunities correctly to shoot 9-16 for 27 points. Gorgui Dieng somehow snuck in at spots to suck up 11 boards (three offensive), put down 20 points, and punch four balls towards the atmosphere. Yet, those two couldn’t stop the Cavs big three who combined for 73 points, 11 assists, 14 rebounds, and four steals.

Let’s relive this gradual climb to a three minute period of dominance. (more…)

Fantasy Notebook: The Autodraft Hangover

Tuesday, October 28th, 2014

ESPN-Hoops

Yes, yes, I know; autodraft is a cruel mistress. It’s a tale full of sound and fury, signifying nothing. It’s a lightning rod for venomous hyperbole. It is the cruel thumb of fate made all too real as it presses down to take from each of us any hope for individual agency, much less the occasional hollow victory. It may not be the most satisfying version of fantasy basketball but, as the saying goes, it’s the version of fantasy basketball that we have. Well, here at Cavs: The Fantasy League, at least.

Each of the twelve staunch and ready participants in the inaugural CtFL went to bed last night (except for Ben, who was probably just waking up) with dreams of sugar plums and LeBron James dancing in their heads, only to wake up faced with, in the immortal words of Mallory Factor, “DeMarcus Cousins and a pile of poo.”

Mr. Irrelevant, the final player taken in the autodraft, was former Cav C.J. Miles, who wound up on Team PESTAK.

And… well, full disclosure, yours truly wound up with the randomly generated (for serious!) first pick and the auto-LeBron selection. So… well… you know… that worked out.

(more…)

Waiting For This Year: Kevin Love Trade Is Now Official

Saturday, August 23rd, 2014

140823-love-760

It seemed like so much longer than just 30 days, but August 23, 2014 did eventually come and, with it, the deal that delivers Kevin Love to the Cleveland Cavaliers became official.

Now, even though everyone has been talking about this trade for weeks like it had already occurred, this trade has now occurred. The Cavaliers get the 6-10, 260 pound, three-time all star, sending the Minnesota Timberwolves the spoils of their last two years of lottery luck in Andrew Wiggins and Anthony Bennett. The Philadelphia 76ers steps in to facilitate the trade/the continued gutting of their roster sending Thaddeus Young to the Wolves and getting back guard Alexey Shved and forward Luc Mbah a Moute from Minnesota and the Miami Heat’s 2015 first round pick from Cleveland.

Wiggins is only the second number one pick in NBA history to be traded before playing his first professional game. He joins Chris Webber who was traded from the Magic to Golden State on a draft day trade in 1993. Wiggins’s post-draft summer was a little less comfortable than Webber’s, though, as he had to deal with trade rumors basically from the moment LeBron James re-signed with the team in mid-July.

Love is coming off a season where he averaged 26.1 points and 12.5 rebounds a game and his ability to stretch the floor (37.6% shooting from three) makes him the perfect compliment to James.

Because the trade has been a veritable lock for several weeks now, you know what most everyone here at Cavs: The Blog thinks, hopes, eats, prays and loves about Love. But now, at least, we can talk about an Irving-Love-James core (even thinking “Big Three” makes me throw up a little in my mouth) as a real, actual thing and look forward to watching arguably the most talented team in Cavaliers history.

You can read the team’s official release here.

 

The Point Four-ward: The Great American Lineup Buffet

Friday, August 22nd, 2014

buffet

Four points I’m thinking about the Cleveland Cavaliers…

1.) The Cavaliers recent signing of Shawn Marion continues an off-season theme for the team. No, it’s not “sign guys nearly as old as Robert,” though I do appreciate David Griffin’s signings allowing me to talk knowledgeably about the late-90s with some degree of relevance for a change. It’s this: from LeBron James to Kevin Love to Mike Miller and rookies Joe Harris and Dwight Powell, Griffin has been limbering up his roster to give head coach David Blatt lineup flexibility that could, Griffin hopes, put your bikram yoga instructor to shame.

While Blatt may tinker a little in training camp, the bulk of the regular season will probably feature some pretty conventional lineups and there’s no telling at this point what this team’s most successful version of itself will be. Still, it’s difficult to look up and down this roster of players who can play multiple positions and not see some fun potential five-man units. Here are some of my favorite combos:

Kyrie Irving-Dion Waiters-James-Kevin Love-Anderson Varejao

This is the Cavs’ presumptive “best” lineup should you happen to fall on the positive side of the Waiters conversation. This is the line-up that, if it does not start games, will likely finish them. What it lacks in paint-bullying rim protecting it more than makes up for with a.) well-documented chronicling of how this team lacks a rim protector and b.) an offensive unit that features five outstanding passers, enough shooting (probably), four guys who can create their own shot and pick-and-roll pairings galore.

(more…)

The Point Four-ward: So, You Wanna Be a Rock N’ Roll Star?

Thursday, August 7th, 2014

140806-presser-5

Four points I’m thinking about the Cleveland Cavaliers…

1.) Andrew Wiggins said it several times leading up to and just after the NBA draft: playing basketball for Kansas University was like being a rock star.

When I first heard him say it, he was wading through a torrent of questions at the NBA Draft Media Day which takes place the afternoon before the draft. He was answering a question about how his one season of college ball had prepared him for the rigors of life in the professional game and said that playing at KU — with the media scrutiny and fan mania that such a hoops hotbed brings with it — made him and his fellow teammates feel like “rock stars.” He smiled after he said this and everyone chuckled at the thought. But then the reporter asked a follow up: “Is that good?”

Wiggins thought about it for a moment, clearly not expecting to have to think about it for a moment and then said what every one of us probably would have said at 19 years old. He said, “Well, who wouldn’t like that?”

(more…)

A Grumpy Old Cavs Fan

Wednesday, August 6th, 2014

Cleveland has three of the last four No. 1 draft picks on its roster. The best player in the NBA is putting on a Cavs uniform this fall. The Cavaliers are the most buzzworthy team in the NBA. So what’s my problem?

First, let me just get this out there. The “plan” to trade Kevin Love for Andrew Wiggins is the biggest example of groupthink since the invasion of Iraq. My thoughts on the matter are on record. But let me just reiterate the key points.

(more…)

Cavs: the Podcast, Episode 53: Summer League Review, LeBron, and the Madness of Love

Monday, July 21st, 2014

Tom and I attempted to keep this podcast svelt, like a slimmed down Anthony Bennett. Sadly, we failed. This pod was trip to a Las Vegas buffet — we just couldn’t help ourselves: discussing the Summer League, LeBron, Aaron Craft, the melancholy of the the new Cavs era, what’s driving us nuts about Kevin Love trade talk, and so much more. You can listen in on SoundCloud at https://soundcloud.com/ctb-5/summer-league-review-lebron … enjoy.