The 2019-20 season is all but likely over for the Cavaliers

Kevin Love, Cleveland Cavaliers. Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images
Kevin Love, Cleveland Cavaliers. Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images /

The NBA’s season resumption is set to seemingly get its’ go-ahead on Thursday, and the 2019-20 campaign is all but likely over for the Cleveland Cavaliers.

The Cleveland Cavaliers have had anything but a stellar 2019-20 season to this point, as the club is currently just 19-46 on the year.

This season has been primarily focused on getting young pieces such as Collin Sexton, Darius Garland and as it turned out, Kevin Porter Jr., big minutes, though, and those pieces look promising.

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Sexton has led the Cavaliers virtually the whole season with 20.8 points per game, and post-All-Star leading into the NBA season’s novel coronavirus-induced hiatus, Sexton had 25.5 points per game in that span, too.

To me, it would’ve been nice to see the Cavs have some more games, even if that didn’t mean many, via centralized location at the ESPN’s Wide World of Sports Complex at Disney World.

Even with the sample size being small, the Cavs were 5-6 post-All-Star and were playing better with J.B. Bickerstaff taking over at head coach. In that stretch, the Cavaliers had the league’s sixth-best assist rate and were 10th in effective field goal shooting rate as well, per

The squad had some momentum building, but then the hiatus took foothold, and according to reports from Shams Charania of The Athletic and Stadium and ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the league is set to propose its’ 22-team format on Thursday afternoon via Board of Governors call.

That’s seemingly expected to be given the go-ahead for centralized play resumption at Disney, and Charania detailed how the play-in tourney for an eight seed is set to ensue.

The other six teams that are set to be bubble squads invited are the Washington Wizards as the lone Eastern Conference club, along with the New Orleans Pelicans, Phoenix Suns, Portland Trail Blazers, Sacramento Kings and San Antonio Spurs.

Wojnarowski reported that teams are also going to be playing eight regular season contests before a postseason, and that the league is set to all but likely be approved for a resumption from July 31 until a last NBA Finals game date of October 12. It would seem the 2020 NBA Draft/the beginning of free agency would be following that in October, then.

In Charania’s piece referenced in his above tweet (subscription required), he also hit on how the draft lottery and combine are likely to be in August. Shams did also say, that plenty of work does need to be done in terms of safety protocols, though, but the NBA seems to be set to resume its’ season.

Moreover, the 2019-20 season is seemingly done for the Cleveland Cavaliers, and again, it was anything but a banner one.

This campaign was again, far from a stellar one for the Wine and Gold.

It was encouraging to see the squad playing better post-All-Star break, however, and hopefully, Garland, who was showing positive signs before missing five games due to a left groin strain pre-hiatus, can have a productive offseason.

He’ll need to be more assertive as a scorer I believe next season, but his playmaking feel was good to see. It was nice to see Garland have a 4.9-to-1.8 assist-to-turnover ratio in his last 10 games active, too, along with him having a better 44.1 percent field goal shooting clip. Conversely, on the season, that’s been 40.1 percent with the year likely concluded.

Looking at next season, though, Garland clearly has something to prove, and especially in terms of scoring in the paint. I firmly believe he’s more than capable of improving his finishing, though, and again, hopefully he can get stronger and be well adjusted to the NBA game.

Him playing only five games in his lone collegiate season at Vanderbilt due to a meniscus tear had to make that aspect tough for him, but again, with Garland’s range, which we’ve seen plenty of flashes of, I’m optimistic he can turn it around.

In terms of the frontcourt, it is a bit unfortunate for the Cavs that we didn’t see the Andre Drummond-Kevin Love pairing nearly as much as one would’ve liked.

Drummond is reportedly likely to pick up his $28.8 million player option for next season, though, and I’d imagine his chemistry with Love could grow and that pairing could play off each other pretty well, though Drummond being a long-term fit is uncertain.

At minimum aside from I’d say Love, this season, especially after the turn of the year, clarified that the Cavs know just what they have in Larry Nance Jr., coupled with of course Sexton. Nance, with the season seemingly done, had a career-high 10.1 points per game, and had 7.3 rebounds, 2.2 assists and 1.0 steals per outing.

Additionally, it was a real plus to see Nance even prove to be a viable 3 option for Bickerstaff in some instances post-All-Star break.

Next season, that could seem to be utilized more, too, with Nance continuing to make strides as a ball-handler, being a good secondary playmaker and hitting a career-best 35.2 percent from three-point land in 2019-20.

Anyhow, it seems to be a near-certainty that this current season is done for the Cavs, and it wasn’t a memorable one.

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It was good to see the squad look more respectable under Bickerstaff, though, and looking at next season, let’s hope that momentum carries forward and we see more Porter minutes, too.