26
Oct
07

Cleveland Cavaliers

Cleveland Cavaliers Preview

Cleveland has had a frustrating offseason in their stare down with Pavlovic and Varejao. I agree with Danny Ferry on principal, BUT this team did nothing to improve this summer, while so many other eastern teams improved dramatically. They cannot afford to lose those two guys, if winning is their biggest concern. The were the first people off the bench for this team and did so much that doesn’t show up on the stats. Look, the fact is that Danny Ferry has not done a very good job putting this team together. LeBron is one of the top 4 players in the league, but he can’t do all by himself. He’ll get tired an falter at some point, like in the NBA finals!!! Anyways, the loss of those two players opens things up for other guys. Here’s the starting lineup:

Projected starting lineup with last year’s stats:
Stats follow this format – Points, Rebounds, Assists, Steals, Blocks, FG percentage & Minutes

PG – Daniel Gibson
4.6 – 1.5 – 1.2 – 0.4 – 0.1 – 42% & 16.5 min

SG – Larry Hughes
14.9 – 3.8 – 3.7 – 1.3 – 0.4 – 40% & 37 min

SF – LeBron James
27.3 – 6.7 – 6 – 1.6 – 0.7 – 48% & 41 min

PF – Drew Gooden
11.1 – 8.5 – 1.1 – 0.9 – 0.3 – 47% & 28 min

C – Zydrunas Ilgauskas
11.9 – 7.7 – 1.6 – 0.6 – 1.3 – 49% & 27 min

Key Bench Players

Eric Snow
Donyell Marshall
Shannon Brown
Ira Newble
Devin Brown
Dwayne Jones

LeBron is LeBron. I look for his scoring average to go up this year because it appears that he has really worked on his shooting mechanics. He is doing a much better job squaring up and keeping his body in-line when jumping. His percentages have been up all summer and in the preseason. If he shoots more consistently from the outside, he’ll easily average over 30 ppg and he’ll lead the league in scoring this year. The skies the limit with him.

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Daniel Gibson is interesting. He’s fearless and has a great shot, but can he run the team for 30 plus minutes per game? They need him, so they’ll give him every chance to prove he can.

Larry Hughes is healthy and he’s looked good during the preseason. He’ll get more minutes with Pavlovic gone, so I expect all of his numbers to increase, though be it slightly.

Drew Good gets the biggest increase of fantasy value with the absence of Varejao. He almost averaged a double double with only 28 minutes. He’ll easily average that double double with 32 – 35 minutes per. He is great offensive rebounder, so I expect a big year from him.

Big Z will do the same he did last year. He simply cannot handle big minutes, so he will always be somewhat limited.

I really like Shannon Brown, but he’s still young, so give him some time. Donyell Marshall will have value with his three point shooting and rebounding ability. He should also see an increase in minutes.

The Cavs won’t get back to the finals, but they will still be one of the best teams in the east, as long as LeBron is on the court.

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