Cavs: Dylan Windler is making his presence felt, just not typically from 3

Dylan Windler, Cleveland Cavaliers. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
Dylan Windler, Cleveland Cavaliers. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /

After missing his rookie season (stress reaction in his lower left leg) and a solid chunk of this season (fractured left hand), Dylan Windler has finally been able to find some consistency in the Cleveland Cavaliers’ rotation and become a solid player off the bench.

He has turned into a project, but one with high potential and has shown glimpses of it after being selected in the first round in 2019.

His production is a bit up of late and he is finding ways to help the Cavs, but it is not coming from what you’d likely expect, his shooting from deep.

Since February Dylan has averaged 6.6 points and 4.8 rebounds in 19.2 minutes per game. This was done while only hitting 17 out of his past 50 shots from deep and shooting 34.0 percent since February (17 games).

There are a few takeaways from this that are positive for the Cavs, though.

First, he is still being productive and figuring it out. He is getting meaningful time on the court alongside Cavs players like Darius Garland, Collin Sexton and Cedi Osman, and learning as he goes along. He is still finding ways to score, but is also proving to be a worthy rebounder.

To put it into perspective, he would almost be averaging a double-double if you were to average his stats into the per 36-minute category. This is huge for someone who is only 6-foot-6 and known, at least in theory, more so as a shooter.

This isn’t a total surprise however, as he averaged 10.8 rebounds per game in his last collegiate season at Belmont and 7.8 per outing in his four-year career there.

Another positive to takeaway is that he’s not shooting poorly in every game, he just seems to be struggling to find his rhythm for the Cleveland Cavaliers, at least in terms of not having it for 3-4 game stretches typically.

For instance in back-to-back wins in late February against the Atlanta Hawks and Houston Rockets, Dylan shot 4/4 and 5/5 from deep in the two games.

For someone who missed significant time and is still trying to find a grove in the league, he is still being productive and finding ways to contribute that are not what most expected, though.

I was not expecting his production in rebounding to carry over to the NBA, but it has and is a valubale tool of his. For a team that is one of the worst offensive teams in the league, they desperately need efficient scoring.

His spacing is important for this Cleveland Cavaliers team, and it is something I expect to only get better as time goes along, though, to be clear. I view it similiary to Darius Garland, who came off injury his rookie year and struggled to find a rhythm shooting then, but now has had quite the bounce back season and truly appears to be invaluable for Cleveland.

Next. Cleveland Cavaliers: Top 30 all-time greatest players. dark

Patience is the key with Windler, and on another positive note, he has been a meaningful cutter and defensively on the perimeter, he’s done a solid job and has been particularly active off-ball.