3 Cavs players to watch during their upcoming 6-game Western road trip

Rajon Rondo, Cleveland Cavaliers. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
Rajon Rondo, Cleveland Cavaliers. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) /
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J.B. Bickerstaff, Cleveland Cavaliers. (Photo by David Richard-USA TODAY Sports) /

For the Cleveland Cavaliers to be at 21-17 at this point in the season, I’ve been more than satisfied thus far. Cleveland is still a relatively young team, and despite that, combined with their brutal first third or so of the season’s schedule, they’re right in the thick of things in the Eastern Conference.

The Wine and Gold are currently at the sixth spot in the East, which is no small feat. On the year, the Cavaliers are third in defensive rating, fifth in assist rate and 10th in true shooting rate.

Nonetheless, it’s tough for the Cavs that after Collin Sexton was set to be out for the rest of the season as of early November because of a meniscus injury, that Ricky Rubio suffered the same fate from an ACL tear last week.

Sexton’s injury was a blow in itself, and Rubio had been providing a heck of a lift as mostly a supersub-type player for Cleveland both in the scoring and playmaking variety, and we’ll have to see if his expiring contract is moved by the Feb. 10 trade deadline. Rubio could be a player Cleveland looks to re-sign still during this offseason, and there reportedly were internal discussions about a possible extension for him within the Cavs.

In the interim, it was understandable for Cleveland to address the Rubio injury by trading for veteran Rajon Rondo, who was acquired from the Los Angeles Lakers. He is reportedly bought into this new situation with Cleveland, and can still aid the group from a playmaking perspective.

Rondo is likely set for his Cleveland debut on the Cavaliers’ upcoming six-game road trip, which begins on Friday at the Portland Trail Blazers, and lasts through Jan. 15. The other matchups in that slate are the Golden State Warriors on Sunday, followed by the Sacramento Kings on Monday, the Utah Jazz on Wednesday, the San Antonio Spurs next Friday and then a meeting with the Oklahoma City Thunder via second leg of that back-to-back will wrap it up.

So with that in mind, who are a few Cavs players to pay close attention to on this road trip, then, in hoping Cleveland can bounce back following a number of COVID-19 protocols absences, playing into them losing four of five?

We’ll take a look at three Cavs to watch on this upcoming roadie here.

The first Cav to watch in this Western Conference road trip is the aforementioned Rondo.