How things have changed. Several weeks ago we had guys like Colin Cowherd stating that Kevin Love would be leaving Cleveland, that Lebron James had to be reconsidering his decision to return and that David Blatt was a dead man walking.
Bill Simmons seemed to lose all perspective as he questioned whether Lebron was still the same player and whether this team could ever play together. He freely took shots at Love and Kyrie Irving. With Love there were obvious struggles (hardly surprising) while with Irving he was completely ignoring how Kyrie had embraced playing defense along with Blatt’s leadership.
Smart analysts, however, looked at the trades made by David Griffin and realized that they had made some very smart adjustments.
So now we have the Cavs on a 10-game winning streak and Cowherd is saying boldly that of course the Cavs are going to win the East. He doesn’t even acknowledge that he’d done a 180 on this team. I haven’t heard anything from Simmons yet, but he’s pretty good at acknowledging when he’s been way off.
Look, I have no idea whether this Cavs team can win the East, let alone the Finals. But it was obvious that it would take this team time to gel. It was obvious that a hurt Lebron led to issues in team performance. It became obvious that despite his efforts to fit in, Dion wasn’t the ideal fit for this roster.
Griffin understands that with Kyrie and Lebron driving to the basket you need shooters to spread the floor and bury threes. That’s one reason JR Smith is thriving. The Cavs also needed a presence at center, hence the deal for Timofey Mozgov which some people mocked as a desperation move. Would the Cavs really be better off with 2 late first round picks instead of having Mozgov.
This team is now fun to watch, and I’m going to enjoy the ride like I did with the Buckeyes. Who knows if they can do it, but that’s part of the fun.