I had the chance to talk to the newest Cavalier and former CSU Viking Cedric Jackson. When Delonte West went down with his finger injury, many commenters here were hopeful that Cedric might get the call. Known as a defensive specialist (DPOY in the Horizon League his senior year) Cedric seemed to be a logical choice for the Cavs, although Coby Karl wouldn’t have been a surprise either. Cedric was in Erie when he got the call that the Cavs wanted him on a ten day contract and Cedric jumped at the chance.
Cedric said he was excited to be back in the area and specifically to be close to his college coaches and friends. He called his call up a blessing, and a great feeling. I asked if he had any goals for the season-
“Yeah, I just want to do my job to the best of my ability when I get the opportunity.”
He mentioned his time playing against the Bobcats and Russell Westbrook and was proud of his defense in limited action. Jackson knows that his role when he comes in isn’t going to be to really run the offense, but to be a defensive stopper for whatever minutes he gets.
His first order of business might be to introduce himself to coach Mike Brown.
I asked coach Brown if he had any confidence in Cedric’s ability to run the offense despite Jackson’s short time with the team, and this was his reaction-
“When you first asked that question I had to ask myself who the heck is Cedric Jackson. Then I remembered he was the kid we signed on a ten day deal from Cleveland State.”
Um Coach, you did send him in the game against the Thunder on his first day with the team.
“Since he hasn’t had the chance to practice with us I’d say my confidence in his ability to run the offense is pretty low. If we have to stick him in there we’ll see what he can do.”
For his part Cedric is approaching this time with the Cavaliers like he has a chance to stick with the team. I asked if he hoped that even if he wasn’t picked up for the season, or even another 10 day deal if he hoped he had a chance to showcase himself for other teams. He said that he hasn’t even thought about that. He’s focused on the Cavaliers because that’s the team he’s on. He’s hoping he can make an impact on the defensive end of the floor.
Hey Mike. I think you might like this kid. You should introduce yourself. Talk to him for a few minutes. He has a locker at the Q. At least, for now.
Overheard at Cavalier shootaround-
-Mike Brown was “a little surprised” to hear that J.J. Hickson wasn’t selected for the sophomore team in the Rookie challenge at All Star weekend. He would be more disappointed if nobody gets to join LeBron from the team. Rosters are announced tomorrow.
-Everyone is in awe of LeBron’s game lately. From Daniel Gibson to Mike Brown to visiting journalists, everyone was buzzing about LeBron’s recent stretch of games in which he has taken down Kobe Bryant, Kevin Durant and Dwyane Wade.
-Stunned reactions to Goldhammer’s inclusion on Cleveland’s sexiest singles list. Whatever.
-Tonight’s game is one that everyone expects the Cavs to win easily, but wouldn’t be surprised if the Cavs come out flat and fall behind. That seems to be a calling card of this year’s team. Just as beating tough opponents has become.