The dream starting 5 for the Cleveland Cavaliers 5 years from now

Donovan Mitchell and Darius Garland, Cleveland Cavaliers. (Photo by Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports)
Donovan Mitchell and Darius Garland, Cleveland Cavaliers. (Photo by Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports) /
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Evan Mobley
Evan Mobley, Cleveland Cavaliers. Photo by Elsa/Getty Images /

Center: Evan Mobley

The shining jewel of the Cavaliers’ dream starting lineup in five seasons will be Evan Mobley, coming fully into his powers at the age of 27 years old. Already one of the best defensive players in the NBA right now, in five years he will have a trio of Defensive Player of the Year trophies on his mantle.

The question for Mobley is the offense, and in our dream scenario he begins taking that step forward this next season and it continues to the height of his prime five years from now. He locks down the midrange jumper, develops his faceup game to roast slower bigs, and his passing continues to elevate to the point that he can run the offense with three elite shooters cutting around him at the elbow.

What’s more, Mobley takes a major step forward as a rebounder, becoming a perennial double-double machine. He becomes an All-Star fixture and averages 25 points, 12 rebounds, five assists and two blocks per game in a First Team All-NBA performance during the Cavs’ best season, which ends with the franchise’s second championship.

The “Big 3” the Cavaliers have comes along exactly how everyone hopes, and together Garland, Mitchell and Mobley lead the Cavs to the Eastern Conference Finals in four of the next five seasons, with two trips to the NBA Finals and a banner to hoist into the rafters.

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Your dream starting five might have Jayson Tatum coming to Cleveland, or Cooper Flagg somehow wearing wine-and-gold, or Bronny James becoming a superstar for the Cavs. If the next couple of seasons go as hoped, however, the dream is realized now and that means a contending but familiar starting five to continue the legacy.