Posts Tagged ‘Lebron James’

The Point Four-ward: O-Boards Don’t Lie

Wednesday, November 5th, 2014

 

647Cavaliers Trail Blazers Basketball

First, if you haven’t checked out Ben’s excellent recap of the Cavs/Blazers game, it’s right here.

And now: Four points I’m thinking about the Cleveland Cavaliers…

1.) It’s tough to believe, but these Cavs — the Cavs of the most highly anticipated offense in years coming into this season — are shooting just 42% from the floor so far this season. LeBron James continued a cold start to the season going 4-12 for 11 points against Portland. That included going 1-6 in the paint, a ridiculous number for a finisher as good as number 23.

Against Portland, though, everyone caught the cold hand. The team shot just 36.5% for the game. Kyrie Irving was 3-17 and (in a disturbing trend) was thoroughly outplayed by slumping-until-yesterday Damian Lillard. Dion Waiters was 3-11 and didn’t attempt a three-pointer. Only Kevin Love, who led the team with 22 points and 10 rebounds, managed a remotely efficient offensive game.

I know it’s early, but the team’s stagnancy and passivity on offense is a little disturbing. There’s been precious little of the weak side action that we saw freeing up so many good looks in the preseason and the ball’s been more of a moderately warm potato than a hot one.

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The Case for The Decision

Tuesday, November 4th, 2014

decision

One of my many manifestations of maladaptive behavior is that I force myself to see things from another perspective. It’s a time consuming chore and I regularly lose sleep over it. The ultimate goal is finding true objectivity for better or worse, and making a final judgment independent of emotion and societal moors. We are weaned from childhood to find a moral of a story. There is always something positive to be found even in the worst of situations. Every Tuesday, I will present a Cavaliers-related event that was a catalyst leading us to this moment in a different light. To get this one out of the way, I present a topic that I lost plenty of sleep over, the case for The Decision.

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Augmented Reality Coaching Center: New Wrinkles

Monday, November 3rd, 2014
Mrs. Whatsit - Mrs. Who - Mrs. Which, by far the oldest "Big 3"

Mrs. Whatsit – Mrs. Who – Mrs. Which, by far the oldest “Big 3″

The season is finally underway.   The Cavalier faithful finally (FINALLY) got to see their beloved team in action. Preseason seemed hardly characteristic of the main 82 unless David Blatt really is planning on giving Joe Harris as much burn as Kyrie. Hopefully the opening night celebration for the prodigal son wasn’t characteristic either. LeBron aggregating three more turnovers than field goals is a rare occurrence for him (although it’s extremely common when you filter by Octobers coming immediately after Decisions). David Blatt inserting just eight players better be a rare occurrence or injuries are going to strike like a thief in the night.

So with all these caveats making it difficult to take stock in the overall state of the new look Cavaliers, I decided to task a handful of our Cavs: The Blog interns to churn through game footage in our state of the art Augmented Reality Coaching Center (ARC2). The ARC2 slices and processes using a massively parallelized datacenter. We actually have content in 4D, so the interns can feel the heat from the scoreboard flamethrowers, sense the thud of a dead spot on the sideline, or take a whiff when LeBron rips one at half court.

So instead of trying to microanalyze two games worth of basketball, well below the sample size threshold of most valuable analyses, I asked our interns to uncover any new wrinkles previously unseen during the 4-year-long basketball recession.

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Recap: Cavs 114, Bulls 108 (Or, ALL THE REBOUNDS!!!)

Saturday, November 1st, 2014
See ball get ball, Tina.

See ball get ball, Tina.

The Cavs won!  They survived NBA-JAM-FIRE Kirk Hinrich, and Tristan Thompson had a Dagger OBoard+Flush in the waning moments of OT.  LeBron looked bad and still 100x better than last night.  Derrick Rose sprained his ankle, stayed in the game, left later, and never came back.

A few weeks ago I wrote about the rebounding prowess of the Cavs.  They finished with a 52-42 edge in rebounding, dominating a good frontcourt despite fighting through the second night of an exhausting back to back.

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Recap: New York 95, Cleveland 90 (or “In Northeast Ohio, Nothing is Given. Everything is Earned.”)

Friday, October 31st, 2014

The words from “The Letter” came back to haunt LeBron James and the Cavaliers in this game: a game that no one in Northeast Ohio thought the Cavs could lose. LeBron looked nervous. David Blatt looked overwhelmed. And the Cavs looked like they’d bought stock in the seriously ill-conceived “big three” narrative. Honestly, there could have been about a dozen more subtitles to this recap. Examples include: “Andrew Wiggins would have blocked that shot,” “LeBron has terrible games too,” “Defense matters,” “That crowd sucked,” “Go back to Hollywood, Biebs,” or “Oh that’s right, Carmelo Anthony’s pretty good.” Ultimately though, the Knicks just played with more energy, intelligence, and focus. The energy that had infused the entirety of the city of Cleveland throughout the day seemed to drain the Cavs instead of fuel them.

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5 on 5: 2014 Tipoff

Wednesday, October 29th, 2014

One more day! The NBA tipped off last night, and the Cavs tip off tomorrow. Our summer of waiting is almost over. In that spirit, we asked five Cavs the Bloggers to answer five questions about what this team will look like to start the season.

Tipoff is Thursday! What are you most excited about as the Cavs open the regular season?

Cory Hughey:  I look forward to the inverse of LeBron’s first return to Cleveland with Miami. The emotion will gather like condensation on the outside of a cold beer mug. For those fortunate enough to be there, they will share a two-hour moment that transcends normal consciousness with 20,000 strangers. Instead of venom, there will be love. Instead of Samardo Samuels there will be Kevin Love.

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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.

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LeBron James Through The Years

Friday, October 24th, 2014

 

Hi. I’m John. I started this website in 2008, and was its Editor-In-Chief until after the 2010-11 season. I spend lots of time doing law school-y things now, such as going to law school. This season, I’m going to be doing a weekly column, as well as some other things as time allows. Over the past 11 seasons, I have watched LeBron James play basketball an unhealthy amount, and I’ve learned a few things about his game over that time. (These columns will be more varied as the season goes on, but don’t be surprised if the first few are LeBron-centric: I’m still getting to know this brand-new Cavs team, while I have 11 years of intense LeBron-watching under my belt.)

Since LeBron James now plays for the Cavaliers again, I thought it would be useful to go back through the last decade-plus of LeBron, and see how he got from the 18-year old kid out of St. Vincent/St. Marys to the four-time MVP and two-time champion who will be suiting up for the Cavs this season. One of the (many) things I always say is truly incredible as LeBron is that he not only came into the league as the most talented prospect of the modern era and lived up to the hype right out of the gate, but he’s improved and changed his game more from when he was first successful to when he hit his prime as much as any player in NBA history.

Follow me past the jump for more (a lot more):

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Becoming A Team

Monday, October 20th, 2014

Paul Pierce, LeBron James
LeBron James has come out and stated that he thinks the Bulls are the more battle tested team in the East.  While some may think LeBron is admitting that he believes the Bulls are a better team, that is not really the case.  Brian Windhorst reported on LeBron’s thoughts today.

“[The Bulls] are a team that’s much better than us right now just off chemistry,” James said. “They’ve been together for awhile, we’ve got a long way to go.”

“You’ve got to go through something to create a bond; that means for the worse,” James said. “We’ve got to lose ballgames that we think we should’ve won, we’ve got to get into an argument every now and then just to test each other out.”

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The Point Four-ward: Fantasy Versus Reality

Monday, October 20th, 2014

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Four points I’m thinking about the Cleveland Cavaliers…

1.) Well, the bloom is officially off the rose. The Cavaliers have lost. All the tiny cracks and fissures Cavs fans have seen in their team over the first four preseason games finally busted open full and wide in the team’s 108-102 loss to the Dallas Mavericks on Friday. The turnovers. The consistently inconsistent implementation of David Blatt’s new offense. The porous defense. The less-than-fully-active roster. All of those were on full display and, in the end, the result was predictably not in the Cavaliers’ favor.

Now (he says for about the millionth time), most of this is just preseason stuff. Coach Blatt is clearly choosing to have his club ready to begin the season physically, even if that means making sacrifices in cohesion that result in all of the above. Friday was Kevin Love’s and Shawn Marion’s turns to sit, meaning Blatt hasn’t had his full roster to play with in-game since the Cavs’ preseason opening win against Maccabi Tel Aviv.

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