5 worn out misconceptions Cleveland Cavaliers have proven wrong this season

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Misconception No. 5 - "Isaac Okoro is a bust"

The term "draft bust" is thrown around a lot, and the Cavaliers are no stranger to making the wrong selection over the years. The latest name added to the list of potential Cavaliers busts was none other than Isaac Okoro. The wing defender had little to no impact offensively and repeatedly fell in and out of the starting lineup. Cleveland's 2020 fifth-overall selection of Auburn prospect Isaac Okoro has been criticized over the last few seasons, rightfully so in many ways, but Okoro is putting all these critiques to rest with a breakout season.

Okoro's defensive prowess has never been in question, and still he has taken it to an even higher level, forcing elite guards and forwards into dramatically poor scoring nights whenever they face off. Offensively, Okoro has shown unbelievable growth in his fourth season. His baseline cuts to the rim have wreaked havoc on opponents his entire career, and his expanded shooting range has opened up more chances to make highlights off a slick move after a shot fake and drive.

After three seasons of subpar shooting, Okoro was constantly in trade rumors. He was a formidable defender, but the Cavaliers had leap frogged his offensive development when they acquired Donovan Mitchell in 2022. There was little time to spend waiting for Okoro to find his shot, and it seemed like his Cleveland tenure was going to be cut short. Now, as he enters restricted free agency, his impeccable defense and 39.9-percent three ball has every former critic (including me) eating their words.

Okoro is not suddenly a perennial All-Star or All-NBA candidate. He should be in the conversation for the All-Defense team, and he is no doubt a priority to bring back to Cleveland this offseason when he enters restricted free agency.

The Cleveland Cavaliers are still an unproven team, but they have put together another tremendous regular season and look primed for an improved playoff push this season. From Bickerstaff's growth as an offensive mind to Okoro's leap, the Cavs and their fans should be excited to witness what the newest era of Cavaliers basketball can do in the postseason.

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