So Kevin Love is finally a Cleveland Cavalier. What can I say? Wow? Yeah, I’ve been saying “wow” for 30 days now, but I’m still surprised.
What. An. Offseason. An offseason to end all off seasons. One offseason to rule them all. (and is it even over?)
The Cavs went digging and struck gold and oil at the same time. You can say the same thing about LeBron.
And what an incredible way for James to recover from losing in the Finals. It’s almost like he didn’t lose at all. He’s a big winner this summer. Maybe the biggest winner.
Or maybe Kevin Love is the biggest winner.
Or maybe Kyrie Irving is the biggest winner.
Or maybe David Blatt is the biggest winner.
Or maybe Dan Gilbert is the biggest winner.
Either way, LeBron is probably going to be the first player to go to 5 straight Finals since… Bill Russell? I don’t know if that’s true or not but I can’t think of anyone who wasn’t a Celtic in the 60’s that went to 5 straight Finals.
In any case… the 2014-15 Cleveland Cavaliers. Not a bad team, eh?
PG – Kyrie Irving / Matthew Dellavedova
SG – Dion Waiters / Mike Miller / Ray Allen?
SF – LeBron James / Shawn Marion / Mike Miller / James Jones
PF – Kevin Love / Tristan Thompson
C – Anderson Varejao / Brendan Haywood?
If Haywood can get healthy, that would be enormous for Cleveland. He had some great defensive metrics in his last full season, finishing 39th overall (great) on Points Per Play allowed according to Synergy.
The Cavs having Shawn Marion is a luxury. LeBron and Marion should form a very good defensive tandem. Marion is the closest thing defensively to a Scottie Pippen that LeBron has ever had, and even though he’s 36 (same age as yours truly), he still has the ability to slow down elite PGs like Tony Parker (which he did in the first round last season).
So if Marion feels the way I do at 36, then he probably thinks he can still hang with anybody. I don’t feel 36 personally. I don’t think he does either. I’d say most NBA players – if they’re still playing when they’re 36 – then they probably feel a lot younger than your average 36 year old.
The Cavs now have 3 of the last 4 three point champions.
When’s the last time that happened?
They also have Mike Miller and LeBron James who can both rain threes. And if Ray Allen shows up… well, cmon… threes won’t be an issue on this team.
The only potential weakness I see in the Cavs lineup is health. The health of Varejao and Haywood is vitally important. We’ll have to keep an eye on that. Kevin Love has been known to have issues every once in a while too. But, barring injury, I think the Cavs are golden.
Even if, say, Varejao came up lame (knock on wood) – or even if Love came up lame (knock on wood) – I think the Cavs will still be a good team. Maybe not good enough to win it all, but still good enough to take the East, in my opinion.