The Cleveland Cavaliers’ roster is about 90% complete following the NBA Draft and free agency moves, with the exception of two more players the team can sign at around $4 million a year. The main core of the team remains intact, with the only losses being Lamar Stevens and Cedi Osman. Max Strus and Georges Niang will provide much-needed shooting and floor spacing to help Cleveland’s offense take off.
After the way last season ended, J.B. Bickerstaff needs to focus on maximizing shooting in all types of lineups. The Cavs finished last in pace a year ago and relied too heavily on Darius Garland and Donovan Mitchell to create plays in the halfcourt. The new additions will help maximize the offense without sacrificing the defense that this team was built on.
All new Cavalier lineups
Although the Cavs likely added just two players who will see significant minutes in the postseason, it wouldn’t be surprising to see new combinations of players from last year being used for the majority of the season. Georges Niang may not be a superstar-level player, but his size and shooting versatility allow the Cavs to be more creative with their lineups compared to last year.
The roster this season is built with more versatility and a variety of skill sets. A major limitation last season was that many players had similar strengths and weaknesses. The best teams have different lineups they can utilize in various situations, based on the opponent’s playing style. Last year, the Cavs relied on essentially the same lineup throughout the game and substituted players with similar weaknesses, resulting in a repetitive, losing first-round series.
Here are four new lineups the Cavaliers can deploy to enhance their chances of a deeper postseason run.