Young Cavs in/will be in town for a bit for offseason focus

Cleveland Cavaliers guard Darius Garland handles the ball. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
Cleveland Cavaliers guard Darius Garland handles the ball. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) /

The Cleveland Cavaliers‘ now-past season ended on May 16 with a loss at the Brooklyn Nets, which was then their 13th loss in 14 games. The closing stretch to the season was not how Cleveland wanted their campaign to end, but in fairness, a barrage of injuries didn’t aid them.

On the plus side, positive takeaways from that stretch was the play of players such as Collin Sexton to a large extent, Isaac Okoro and Dean Wade, for example. While an ankle injury to Darius Garland did play into it somewhat, and/or some other injuries a bit, Okoro’s closing batch of games were nice ones for him to have had leading into the offseason.

In his last 12 games, he had 16.2 points per outing, and next season, there should be further growth from him on the offensive end.

Anyway, while the Cavs reportedly conducted player exit interviews last week, many being virtual, it is good to know that young players for them are going to be back in Cleveland for a bit/are currently in Cleveland for some offseason focus/advice. After the conclusion of the season, the organization thought it’d be wise for players/others to get away a bit, which was understandable.

In relation to the young Cavs being back/some to be in a different group in the next couple of weeks, though, that’s according to a report from Spencer Davies of And here’s more as to what I’m referring to, per Davies/his source.

"“According to the source, the wine-and-gold’s younger talents will file back in over the next couple of weeks. When they arrive, the Cavs will essentially lay the groundwork and implement guiding principles for what the players need to work on, whether in Cleveland or elsewhere. Strength and conditioning, diet and nutrition are the pillars of that foundation. Coaches are also going to visit with them over the summer when they aren’t in town.The plan is to have four or five of them back at a time for a week’s time, and then the following week, do the same thing with a different group.‘We’re back to the work,’ the source said. ‘They’re locked in.'”"

In Davies’ report, he touched on how the front office is back at it as well of course, and Davies alluded to how Cleveland could potentially look to sign Sexton to a sizeable contract extension, but doesn’t need to do so right away, as Cavs general manager Koby Altman noted.

From there, Davies hit on how the Cavaliers seem extremely likely to lock up to-be restricted free agent Jarrett Allen long-term, which was not breaking news, but was worth discussing.

Additionally, Davies alluded to how Altman and company will be looking to ideally add veteran help to aid in “supplementing” the Cavaliers’ young core, and that Kevin Love, as Altman highlighted, can still be valuable for Cleveland from a floor spacing and leadership standpoint. The offseason for Love is crucial in terms of him being able to get fully healthy heading into next season, clearly, for one, but playing less, but more efficient minutes moving forward would be wise, as Davies’ source stated.

In any case, circling back to the youngsters, it was noteworthy to me that young Cavs are set to be in Cleveland for a bit for the coaching/training staff to touch base with them regarding the offseason and how they can keep progressing in the coming months.

It’s a plus that young Cavs are getting some key offseason pointers already.

Even with the 2020-21 season having been wrapped up just a few weeks back and it now being for an extended period, even while some guys seem set to be in Cleveland periodically anyhow, the groundwork being laid for young Cavs’ offseasons is important. Garland can hopefully get stronger again, as he did last season, but Cleveland reportedly wants him to take that a step further.

The health/nutrition/fitness aspect was something that was a takeaway clearly, and so was how the Cavs are looking to get up more three-point attempts, particularly from the likes of Garland and Sexton.

That’s seemingly being preached in this current offseason focus for players individually, as Davies’ report/his source expressed; that source for one, stated that the Cavaliers need both Sexton and Garland to be putting “eight a game,” on the triple attempts subject.

Davies also touched on how Cleveland wants the playmaking to continue to improve from Sexton, who showed growth signs in that realm last season with 4.4 assists per contest, and closed out strong in that way. So one would assume that’s being worked on in this bit he’s back.

From there, as far as other key takeaways, the Cavaliers are reportedly helping to aid Allen in improving his offensive game/versatility on that end, which is a no-brainer, but a positive, and Davies’ source hit on how Cleveland is looking to utilize Okoro more next season on-ball.

"‘You were seeing a lot more of his talent come out at the end of the year — what he can do with the ball. He’s a really good passer, and he’s efficient. He’s not a high-usage guy, but you put the ball in his hands and he can make a play and get the defenses shifted. I think you’re gonna see a lot more stuff with him next year in the mid-post and in the post and in pick-and-roll, because he can do all those things and he can really pass out of that stuff.’The source indicated that the Cavs are planning to showcase Okoro at the NBA Summer League. Although he likely won’t play in too many of those games, the idea is to get Okoro more reps on the court in preparation for his sophomore season.'”"

So, one would assume that Okoro/others and then another group next week it appears will be getting some work in for a bit in Cleveland to come, too, and at least as of Monday, Garland and Sexton have reportedly been/are doing so, per Davies.

Moreover, it’s just good to know that for young Cavaliers players, that the groundwork is beginning to be laid down for them to know what to prioritize this offseason from an on-floor and fitness/nutrition standpoint.

As far as that goes, hopefully we’ll see continued growth from the young core of Garland, Sexton, Okoro and Allen early on next season/looking onward, and getting others via the draft/free agency to help their progression is important, too, as we know.

Next. Garland, Prince can help Okoro with his handle. dark

Players such as Patty Mills, T.J. McConnell, Frank Ntilikina or Doug McDermott could help in doing so as far as some possible free agency targets, for instance, and prospects such as Jonathan Kuminga, Scottie Barnes and/or others could via the 2021 NBA Draft. Davies did report that depending on whether the Cavs rise/fall from their current #5 slot in the June 22 lottery, his source said “they’ll be open-minded to dealing the pick,” for what it’s worth, though.