The Cavaliers haven’t been in the playoffs without LeBron James since 1998 but can change that this year. This year’s team off to a seven and four start looks to be a team to take seriously. They are fun to watch playing hard and seem to have bought into Coach Bickerstaff. In their win against the Knicks the bench seemed engaged and enthusiastic. The Cavs survived a two and two west coast road trip beating Denver and the Clippers. Going west is a place young teams struggle with. Not only did they survive but managed to beat two playoff teams, Denver and the Clippers. They now need to survive the injury to Collin Sexton who has played well this season .
Evan Mobley has appeared to be the glue that has tied this team together. He is adept at blocking shots and thrives defensively and can hit the three. He hit two clutch threes Sunday night in the fourth quarter against the Knicks and is one of a few outstanding rookies.
Mobley is playing the four while Jarrett Allen has played the five. Allen is averaging 14.9 points a game and grabbing 11.6 rebounds a game while Mobley is averaging 14.9 points and8.0 rebounds a game. The Cavs are using two bigs, Allen and Mobley successfully. Could this be a new trend the rest of the NBA copies going away from small ball.
The Cavs also have a nice backcourt with improving Darius Garland, Ricky Rubio and the previously mentioned Sexton. Rubio, a solid point guard, had an outstanding game against the Knicks Sunday night scoring thirty seven points with ten assists. Garland a lottery pick in 2019 and Sexton a lottery pick in 2018 have matured and are solid contributors to the Cavs success.
Help is on the way!
The team has been playing well without two of their key players Lauri Markkanen and Kevin Love. They both have been out due to covid, Markkanen has missed the last three games and Love the last four. Their return can only help the Cavs as they bring added offense.
With Sexton out for a while the jury is out for this season but it appears the Cavs have a nice future. Over the next few weeks we will find out if the team can survive Sexton’s injury this year. The Cavs, will face Boston and Brooklyn twice and the Suns, Golden State and Washington once over the next few weeks. No matter how the Cavs do in the short term they are on the right track for the long term.
[Editors Note: Our partner, HoopDini recently shared his thoughts on the Cavaliers success this season as well. You can watch that video here.]
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