Cleveland Cavaliers 2017 Season Preview
LeBron James is the best basketball player in the world. As long as he's on Cleveland, the Cavaliers got a shot.
Kyrie Irving averaged 20.8 points per game at point guard on a weak Cavaliers roster in 2013-2014. That total improved to 21.7 points per game. Irving injured his left kneecap in game 1 of the 2015 NBA Finals. Cleveland added Mo Williams who averaged 14.2 points per game as a backup to Ricky Rubio in Minnesota to backup Irving in Cleveland. Williams is a nice under the radar type of player that can make a difference. First off, he's an underrated sixth man, and second he's a guy that can get you a lot of points and you don't have to pay a lot for his services. He's not cheap, but he's very affordable and finding players like that while saving cap space is what separates the great teams from the good teams.
James averaged 25.3 points per game in Cleveland after averaging 27.1 points in Miami when the Heat made the 2014 NBA Finals. There is no question that LeBron is the heart and soul of Cleveland.
Kevin Love only averaged 16.4 points per game in Cleveland after averaging 26.1 points per game in Minnesota. Love regressed significantly, yet he still received a new contract to play in Cleveland. Tristian Thompson will remain an effective backup power forward to Kevin Love.
Cleveland didn't have depth behind them at point guard with Kyrie Irving and that's what kept the Cavaliers from winning the NBA Title. As long as LeBron avoids an injury, then the Cavaliers should be able to reach the NBA Finals. James won 2 games against Golden State without Kevin Love or Kyrie Irving and that speaks volumes about how much he's matured as a player.
Cleveland may have depth at point guard and power forward in the event that Irving or Love gets injured, but Cleveland still lacks quality starters at shooting guard and center that can average 10 points per game. Not having those starters will cause Cleveland to lose to San Antonio, Golden State, Oklahoma City, or even the Los Angeles Clippers.
Chris Ransom follow @DraftUtopia Posted on 3/6/2016.
Cleveland Cavaliers Prediction
Our starting 5 predictions segment will feature a brief one paragraph prediction from 5 of our basketball analysts at Draft Utopia.