Cavs Fans, 9 Reasons To Still Have Hope!
Cavs Fans, 9 Reasons To Still Have Hope!
I’m not going to sugar coat it, the Cavaliers got absolutely destroyed last night. Gongfu Tea Cup was embarrassing and even humiliating at times.
HOWEVER, I’ve seen a lot of NBA fans and Cavs fans in general massively overreact to last night’s performance.
Let me begin.
1. “ROAD TRIP”
The Cavs are coming off their longest and one of the toughest road trips in the NBA this season which included the Texas triangle of Dallas, San Antonio and Houston. NBA experts and players always say the first home game back after a long road trip is always the toughest, as it’s hard to have your legs and energy, this isn’t an excuse, just something to consider.
2. “KYRIE IRVING”
This is perhaps the biggest point. Kyrie is still on a minutes restriction and is still getting his legs, rhythm and flow back for this season. People forget his season has only started not so long ago, he has showed glimpses of what he can do but he has been average or less impactful for most of his return so far. This is a completely different Kyrie at the moment to the one that dropped 57 on the Spurs in their building and as Kyrie continues to get in the flow of the season and play more games, the Cavs will grow as he does. To give you an indication of the big discrepancy in a fully healthy and flying version of himself and the one now, Kyrie turned down numerous 3 point attempts and only had 1 made basket until nearly the end of the 3rd quarter last night. Very unlike his usual self.
3. “KEVIN LOVE”
Kevin has been an interesting story this year. He has excelled for the most part as the Cavs have got him more involved however in the big games he’s struggled except for rebounding the basketball. This is still an evolving aspect of the Cavaliers. He struggles with difficult matchups and does struggle defensively against offenses that execute, however WHEN the Cavs find a way for Love to be effective in big games, they will go to another level. If he contributes along with others, the Cavs are a very hard team to beat.
The Cavaliers transformed into an extraordinary defensive team towards the end of last season before entering the Playoffs. The Cavs have been good in spurts defensively, but haven’t been consistently good on that end so far this season. Even in some of the wins, the defense has been poor and the Cavs have won on talent alone. This is something that is a working progress also as the Cavs have a couple of new pieces and lineups that are disrupting the overall defensive rhythm right now. Some of it has been down to the extremely poor play of Timofey Mozgov, so much so that the Cavs were forced to change their starting lineup and have Tristan Thompson starting. This is also a working progress and the Cavaliers will reach that level sooner rather than later.
Even though we are nearly halfway through the season, the Cavaliers have not yet to establish a solid rotation in regards to personnel and also lineups. Even just recently, Anderson Varejao has been given significant minutes after he sat out 10 games straight amidst rumors he may even be traded. Further, after starting in place of Kyrie Irving, Mo Williams has gone from starter to not playing at all. This shows that the Cavs are still playing around with lineups and combinations that could help them during the regular season and more come Playoff time. Again, something the Cavs will solidify in the coming months.
The trade window is still open and rumors are the Cavaliers could be looking to add a 3 & D wingman who could help them matchup against the Warriors and Spurs of the world. It’s not a necessity, but it’s something that could make them more versatile and give them other options come Playoff time. Rumors have also been the Cavs could offload Timofey Mozgov, who has really struggled this season after shining last campaign. The Cavs roster could look different when the face either the Spurs, Warriors or Thunder coming out of the West.
7. “SERIES DIFFERENT TO REGULAR SEASON”
Plain and simply, a 7 game series is much different to a 1 off game in the NBA. You catch a team on a hot night in the NBA, you normally lose, and that’s the way it goes. I mean, the Warriors could not miss last night, it felt like they were making everything. The Warriors shot 10/16 from 3 in the first half and nearly 70% from the field, no one is going to keep up with them on a night like that, however, a 7 game series is much different. Factors and matchups come into play, adjustments are made, the pace is slower, and teams learn the others tendencies and schemes. It’s a whole different ball game, and again, something that will be drastically different than a 1 off game like last night.
The fact of the matter is, Golden State and San Antonio are not in the Cavaliers conference. So in truth, the Cavs really don’t have to worry about them until the NBA Finals, provided both teams make it. The Cavaliers are likely to breeze through the Eastern Conference, whereas the Warriors and Spurs could be slugging it out even in the First Round against formidable opponents. After undergoing test after test and energy sapping rounds over and over, which are likely to run long and tough, the Finals could look very different from a 1 off regular season game.
9. “EARLY DAYS”
Perhaps the most important thing to remember is that it’s still relatively early in the season. The Cavs struggled before the All Star break last season and then played at an unbelievable level afterwards. It is likely everything will click after the break and as the games go by, the Cavs will continue to move forward again. We are yet to even hit the halfway mark of the season, let’s not jump the gun, many things can happen before the Playoffs and even during it.
All in all, last night is done. Don’t give up hope Cavalier fans, there’s a long way to go, many steps to be taken, many improvements to be made, this is just the beginning, it’s not over yet.
Do not lose hope.