After starting the year with a surprising 8-6 record, the young Cleveland Cavaliers shocked the league. With many key players injured — including former All-Star and NBA champion Kevin Love (right calf strain) — the young core was forced to step up.
For a while, the Cavs were making some noise behind first year head coach J.B. Bickerstaff. During first month of the NBA season, the Cavaliers (10-19) seemed to be legit playoff contenders. Led by two-time All-Star Andre Drummond and his stellar defense, the Cavs were actually a fun team to watch.
Not to mention the All-Star level play from Collin Sexton. To start the year, the third-year guard averaged over 25 points per game while shooting 50% from the field, and over 50% from 3-point range. Being the only player in the league to do this, Sexton garnered a lot of attention himself. After two years of disappointment post-Lebron’s second exodus, there was definitely a bit of buzz going around the league about Cleveland.
This month’s stint was highlighted by the classic “team defense turns into offense” that converted the opposing teams’ turnovers into flashy Cavs’ fast breaks. This lets players, such as second year guard Darius Garland, shine.
Robbery is not something you think of when talking about the NBA. Say what you want, but the Nets were robbed after giving up Taurean Prince and Jarrett Allen for Dante Exum and a second-round pick in a four team deal that landed James Harden in Brooklyn.
Yes, I know the Nets got James Harden in the end, but the Cavs basically gave up a bag of nuts and bolts for two young defensive players each with a large upside. A great move by GM Koby Altman and the rest of the front office. Both players have become great addition to this young team.
The absolute pinnacle of the season so far has got to be the back to back wins against the newly formed super team in Brooklyn. It was a point in the season where Cedi Osman, Yes CEDI OSMAN looked to have found his groove.
The Cavs went in as underdogs against James Harden, Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant, who were ready to make some noise in the East. To the Nets surprise, so were the Cavs. In a double overtime game, the Cavaliers came out on top with a score of 147-135, led by Collin Sexton’s 42 points.
The next game against the Nets, which was two days later, the Cavs seemed to be just as hot. With the return of the injured Garland and a double-double from both Larry Nance and Drummond, the Cavs won 124-115. This was supposed to be a turning point for this team, and at the time it was thought to be...
I’ll be continuing the review the rest of the Cavs season. Stay tuned for part two.
Ben Belinger is a freshman studying journalism at Ohio University. Please note that the views and opinions of the columnists do not reflect those of The Post. Want to talk to Ben? Email him @firstname.lastname@example.org