On Friday night on NBA TV at 8:30 pm ET, the Cleveland Cavaliers will go up against the Brooklyn Nets. The Cavaliers are scheduled to play four games during the 2023 Las Vegas Summer League, excluding the Summer League tournament. Their games are against the Nets tonight, the Raptors on Sunday, the Grizzlies on Monday, and the Bulls next Thursday.
The Summer League is a place where the young players can show their worth, and get a lot of playing time. For the Cavaliers, their young players like two-way guys Isaiah Mobley and Craig Porter Jr., and 2023 second-round pick Emoni Bates will all probably not get a lot of playing time for the Cavaliers. However, for the Summer League, they’ll be given a lot of minutes.
That brings us to the first game for the Cavaliers.
What should fans be looking out for from the Cavaliers in their Summer League debut?
The Nets have a solid young squad, having the latest 21st and 22nd picks in the 2023 NBA Draft. Noah Clowney and Dariq Whitehead should both play really well, and both should have successful NBA careers. That said, Whitehead will not be playing in the Summer League this year.
What should we expect for tonight? Chances are, players such as Emoni Bates, Khalifa Diop, and Sharife Cooper will all try to play their best, as they’d want to earn themselves either a standard NBA contract, or the Cavs’ last two-way spot. Bates was again Cleveland’s most recent second-round pick, and while he had inconsistencies in college, he has tons of upside as a shot-maker.
As for the Nets, Whitehead could’ve been a key target for them on offense, as he was one of the best three-point shooters in all of college last year, especially on catch-and-shoots. As was previously mentioned, though, Whitehead won’t be playing in Summer League, due to his second foot surgery needed after his season with Duke.
Looking beyond Whitehead, Brooklyn’s roster also includes former Toronto Raptors guard Armoni Brooks, former Memphis Grizzlies guard in Kennedy Chandler, and the Nets’ recent second round pick Jalen Wilson out of Kansas.
The head coach of the Summer Cavaliers was going to be Josh Broghamer, Cleveland’s Player Development Coach, but he has since joined the Dallas Mavericks staff as an assistant coach. So now, the head coach of the Summer Cavs is Mike Gerrity, the head coach of the Cleveland Charge, the Cavs G League affiliate.
As for the Nets, their head coach will be Trevor Hendry, who is an assistant coach on the Brooklyn Nets.
Regarding the starting lineups for each team, Sam Merrill and Craig Porter Jr. could very well be the guards, Emoni Bates could seemingly be at small forward, with Isaiah Mobley at power forward, and Khalifa Diop at center.
For the Nets, their starting lineup could feature Kennedy Chandler and David Duke Jr. at the guard spots. As for the forwards, those could be filled out by Jamorko Pickett and Jalen Wilson. The center spot will probably be manned by Noah Clowney.
All in all, this should be a good game. Who will come out on top?
Cleveland has more scoring power, and that could lead to them getting the victory tonight.
However, either way, fans should be excited for this game, and to see how the rest of the Summer League plays out.