I, like many of you, am not used to this. Losing to some of the worst teams in the NBA on back-to-back nights is a tough pill to swallow. Even Antawn Jamison, who has been on some really bad teams, has been vocal in saying that this team is “playing like the worst team in the NBA right now.”
It is that bad.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for the Cleveland way. I am not at all opposed to playing every game as the underdog. I don’t mind having all the experts pick against us night in and night out. Because the Cleveland way has always been to prevail with hard fought, hardnosed victories. This year, though, the Cavalier way has turned in to making experts look like geniuses when they pick our team to get romped in nearly every game they play.
And that, to Antawn Jamison and I, is frustrating to no end.
First things first, a stoot-slapping at the hands of the Minnesota Timberwolves on Saturday night is completely unacceptable. There is no reason that any team with a pulse should lose to the T’Wolves. Especially when they’re without Michael Beasley, easily their best player not named Kevin Love.
And let’s not make excuses for these guys. We’re past the point of saying, “Well, maybe they’re just adjusting to Byron Scott’s offense.” Or, “Maybe they’re just adjusting to life without LeBron James.” The way I look at it, those are no longer acceptable excuses. We are right around the quarter point in the season and the Cavaliers just are not executing.
But it’s not even a lack of execution that is haunting them. It is a lack of movement in an offense based solely on moving, and moving quickly. It is a lack of will to buckle down and play solid defense. Heck, the T’Wolves were absolutely lights out from beyond the arc the other night. Are they that good from long range? Or is our defense just that bad? I’m going to go with the latter choice.
Now, there are rumors floating around that the Cavaliers could land Andre Iguodala in a trade with the 76ers. And, to me, that doesn’t make a whole lot of sense for this franchise. I see no reason why we should be buyers at this season’s trade deadline. But I’d be very surprised if the Dan Gilbert-Chris Grant combo doesn’t pull off some sort of deal to improve this team now.
I just don’t see Iguodala making a huge impact on the Cavaliers this season. He is a great player, yes. But his skill set is very similar to that of Jamario Moon – though, there is no doubt that Iggy is better – and he isn’t the type of guy that can do anything more than provide fans with a highlight dunk from time to time. There is a very slim chance that he comes in and immediately makes this team a playoff team.
I would much rather see Dan Gilbert set his win-now attitude aside and sell some guys at the deadline so that we can build a team around young players for the future. I am in no way giving up on this season already. Don’t think for a second that I don’t believe in these guys. I do think we have the ability to steal a playoff spot this season. But I’m not naïve enough to believe that they’re championship contenders. Let’s go out and make a splash in the draft and shift our focus to the future.
What do you guys think?