April 24, 2014

On Kyrie Irving and the Comeback Kids

A three-ball from the top of the key. A cross-over move from the left elbow that found fellow rookie guard Brandon Knight wondering what the heck just happened as the ball fell through the nylon. And an Alonzo Gee steal turned into a 360-degree, over-the-shoulder, no-look pass back to the athletic wing for the unabated dunk.

The entire sequence took roughly one game minute, but it was just the momentum the Cleveland Cavaliers needed to extend a lead against the Detroit Pistons, a lead they would never relinquish thanks to consistent defensive efforts across the board coupled with timely conversions on the offensive end. A lead that would ultimately end in a one-point win at home — their second consecutive win by the narrowest of margins. [Read more...]

NBA Trade Rumors: Cavs Will Look to Move Sessions, Jamison

With the 2011-12 NBA trade deadline less than one month away, the 11-17 Cavaliers will be in the mix with regard to moving players and acquiring additional assets to aid the rebuilding process. The Plain Dealer’s  Tom Reed feels that two of the most likely steps include trading highly-coveted point guard Ramon Sessions as well as the $15 million expiring contract of veteran power forward Antawn Jamison.

If a trading partner cannot be found for Jamison, the Cavs may cut him free and allow him to compete for a championship once again.

“I believe the Cavaliers will trade Sessions and make an effort to move Jamison by one means or another,” writes Reed. “If they can’t trade him — remember they most likely would have to take salary back — they will buy him out.”

With shooting guards Anthony Parker and Daniel Gibson missing considerable time with a variety of injuries, Sessions has provided integral support off of the bench. In 25 minutes per game this season, the slashing guard is averaging 10.4 points and 5.6 assists. Jamison is presently second on the team in scoring, tallying 16.6 points per night.

[Related: NBA Trade Rumors: Lakers Interested in Cavs’ Ramon Sessions]

Box Score: Clippers 92, Cavaliers 99

No Kyrie, no problem? Cavs fans were stunned to find out just moments before tipoff that Kyrie Irving would miss the game with a concussion. Everyone was eager for a Kyrie-CP3 matchup, but instead it was Ramon Sessions who provided a monster game in leading the Cavaliers to a huge win. Sessions had 24 points, 13 assists and limited Chris Paul to 16 points on 5-16 shooting from the field. Antawn Jamison again lead all scorers with 27 points and Anderson Varejao chipped in another double-double with 15 points and 11 rebounds despite having to go to the locker room in the 3rd quarter with a back injury after an ugly fall.

An enormous confidence boosting win without their young rookie PG, the Cavaliers can feel great about winning this one as a team, with a lot of effort and suffocating defense that kept the Clippers’ offense looking disorganized for much of the night. Now all eyes will be on Irving and whether or not he will miss any more time.

LA Clippers

Starters Pos Min FG 3Pt FT +/- Off Reb Ast TO Stl BS BA PF Pts
C. Paul G 36:57 5-16 0-2 6-6 +2 0 3 12 2 3 0 2 2 16
R. Foye G 27:31 5-11 3-6 2-2 -8 0 1 2 1 1 0 1 1 15
D. Jordan C 24:01 0-0 0-0 0-0 +1 2 4 0 1 0 2 0 2 0
B. Griffin F 37:25 8-16 0-0 9-10 -1 5 15 1 1 1 0 2 6 25
C. Butler F 36:11 8-15 0-3 5-6 -4 1 2 1 3 0 1 1 5 21
Bench Min FG 3Pt FT +/- Off Reb Ast TO Stl BS BA PF Pts
Totals 32-78 3-15 25-29 15 38 20 13 8 5 8 26 92
Percentages .410 .200 .862 Team Rebounds: 6
M. Williams 34:29 2-10 0-3 1-1 -7 0 0 3 2 2 0 1 4 5
K. Martin 20:12 3-7 0-1 0-0 0 3 4 0 1 1 2 1 4 6
R. Evans 14:08 0-1 0-0 2-4 -10 4 7 1 2 0 0 0 2 2
R. Gomes 9:06 1-2 0-0 0-0 -8 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 2
E. Bledsoe DNP – Coach’s Decision
B. Cook DNP – Coach’s Decision
T. Leslie DNP – Coach’s Decision
T. Thompkins DNP – Coach’s Decision

Cleveland

Starters Pos Min FG 3Pt FT +/- Off Reb Ast TO Stl BS BA PF Pts
R. Sessions G 39:23 9-16 2-4 4-4 +4 0 2 13 3 1 1 0 4 24
D. Gibson G 35:36 6-11 2-4 3-4 +11 0 3 2 3 1 2 0 1 17
A. Varejao C 31:53 6-8 0-0 3-3 +5 3 11 3 4 0 1 1 4 15
A. Jamison F 38:03 10-18 1-3 6-9 +7 3 8 3 1 0 1 1 3 27
O. Casspi F 20:41 1-3 0-2 0-0 +5 0 1 0 0 1 0 0 1 2
Bench Min FG 3Pt FT +/- Off Reb Ast TO Stl BS BA PF Pts
Totals 36-71 7-18 20-26 10 36 24 15 4 8 5 23 99
Percentages .507 .389 .769 Team Rebounds: 11
A. Gee 32:16 2-8 1-3 2-2 +1 1 3 3 3 0 0 1 3 7
C. Eyenga 16:04 2-3 1-1 1-2 0 1 2 0 1 0 2 0 2 6
S. Samuels 12:55 0-3 0-0 1-2 -5 1 4 0 0 0 1 2 3 1
S. Erden 6:35 0-0 0-0 0-0 +3 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 1 0
L. Harangody 6:34 0-1 0-1 0-0 +4 1 2 0 0 0 0 0 1 0
R. Hollins DNP – Coach’s Decision
K. Irving DNP – Coach’s Decision

While We’re Waiting… Anderson Varejao 48 minutes of energy, Jamison’s shot and Astrubal’s value

While We’re Waiting serves as the early morning gathering of WFNY-esque information for your viewing pleasure. Have something you think we should see? Send it to our tips email at tips@waitingfornextyear.com.

Some great stuff from Brendan after the Cavaliers’ win against Dallas. Check out his interviews. “Early energy for 48 minutes. That’s what it said in blue dry erase marker ink on the Cavaliers white board prior to tip-off with the defending World Champions last night.” [Bowers/Stepien Rules] [Read more...]

Jamison: The Last Three Games Are Worse Than Last Season

Offensively, I have no clue of what we are doing. It’s a lot of one-of-one basketball. We want to the ball to go from one side of the floor to the other and I can’t recall one time tonight when we did that. And, these are things we were preaching before the game. Until we start playing as a team on both ends of the floor, we are going to continue to see these kinds of outcomes. [...] It’s worse than last season. I know we’re better than this. To come out last night and perform the way we did was disappointing, but to come out again after what we talked about and pretty much give the same performance is even worse.  This is a problem we have to fix quickly.

- Veteran power forward Antawn Jamison on the recent three-game plight of the Cleveland Cavaliers. The Cavaliers amassed zero second-chance points in the loss to the Atlanta Hawks following a 10-point loss to the Golden State Warriors and a 39-point loss to the Chicago Bulls who were playing without reigning MVP Derrick Rose.

[Related: Cavaliers Get Smashed In Atlanta, Have Lost Last Three By Seventy-Six Points]

(Source: Tom Reed, Plain Dealer)

Jamison: Cavs Have to Win on the Road

We have to find a way to win on the road. I think we are definitely a different team as far as playing home versus away. I think we play hard but I think we have to do a better job as far as being consistent, our execution on both ends of the floor, on not turning the ball over. We had a tough road trip early and I think we learned from it. If we win [Monday], it’ll be three [of seven]. You want to finish this road trip on a winning note. We just have to mature from it, learn from it, and when we finally play some of these eastern conference teams on the road, we can find ways to win.

- Cavs power forward Antawn Jamison on the rigor of the team’s latest seven-game road trip which finishes up on Monday afternoon in Charlotte. The veteran has shouldered much of the blame for select rough stretches of shooting, saying “when I don’t play well [offensively], we don’t play well.”

On the Cavaliers and the Love of the 3-Point Shot

Antawn Jamison for 3

No shot in basketball is more tantalizing than the 3-point shot. An arbitrary arc drawn on the court that encompasses the team’s offensive zone, it acts as an ever taunting force, daring and begging players who find themselves outside said arc to shoot the ball.

For some teams, the shot is an exercise in performing winning basketball. For other teams, the shot is a reminder of everything that is wrong with that team’s offense.

The Cleveland Cavaliers might be somewhere in between those two extremes, but such is the nature of 3-point shooting for most teams. The old basketball adage of living or dying by “the three” is one of the more true clichés in all of sports. It makes sense, too, because after all, you can make a pretty strong argument that in the game of basketball, the most important thing you can do is make shots.

[Read more...]

Scott: We Need Kyrie Irving to Continue Scoring

We still need him to score for us. Antawn [Jamison] is doing a heck of a job scoring and after that it is basically Kyrie. That’s the one thing right now with a young point guard is trying to balance it out. [...] Once we get other guys around him who can flat-out score, then I think it takes a lot of the pressure off him. Right now in our situation, he’s the only other guy [aside from Jamison] we have who can make his own shot.

- Cavaliers head coach Byron Scott, during Wednesday afternoon’s practice, on rookie point guard Kyrie Irving who is second on the team in scoring (15.6 points per game) and first in assists (5.1).

[Related: Video: Kyrie Irving’s Spin Move on Al Jefferson]

While We’re Waiting…Quiet Browns Offseason, Indians Offseason Improvements, Romeo Crennel Returns!

While We’re Waiting serves as the early morning gathering of WFNY-esque information for your viewing pleasure. Have something you think we should see? Send it to our tips email at tips@waitingfornextyear.com.

Can there really be such a thing a a quiet offseason in Browns town? “When did this become Browns fans’ last stand at the Alamo?

Are we really wondering about blowing everything up, or spending a bazillion dollars in free agency next year, or intimating that Pat Shurmur should be fired?

Maybe the news that they plan to hire an offensive coordinator isn’t enough to satisfy the bloodlust we’ve developed over the past four years.

Think about it—this very well could be the most boring offseason the Browns have had since 2008. We’ve seen a major player get hired or fired every year since then. Here’s a recap of that carnage up until now, starting in 1999, and getting pretty aggressive as we arrive at the present.” [Jimmy Weinland/Dawg Pound Daily]

[Read more...]

Cavs Bounce Back From Toronto Loss, Win Over Wolves

The Cleveland Cavaliers improved to 4-3 last night with an impressive road win over the young and improving Minnesota Timberwolves. Byron Scott’s club methodically ground down the Wolves over the first three plus quarters, building an 18 point lead in the fourth and cruising comfortably to their second road win of the season. The Cavaliers took the lead in the final minute of the first quarter and, aside from the few short runs by the Wolves, never really looked back.

Much of the hype coming into the game focused on the rookie point guard matchup between Kyrie Irving and Ricky Rubio. Irving, along with veteran Ramon Sessions, got the better of the Minny backcourt all evening. Irving finished with 14 points, five rebounds, and five assists from the starting point guard spot. The rookie had a season-high turnover night, however, giving it away seven times. [Read more...]

Cavaliers Show Peek of Princeton Offense

It was poetic. It was fluid.  It even led to a Byron Scott smile. One placed roughly one foot above a set of crossed arms, but a smile is most definitely a smile.

The first quarter featured a young Cavalier team trading largely in slop, ultimately resulting in double-digit turnovers and a few head-scratching moments vis a vis extra, perhaps unnecessary pass attempts. But once this ten-man rotation had even more time to gel, perhaps aided by a post-first quarter pep talk from Scott, fans were graced with flashes of what the Wine and Gold can become on the offensive end.  With roughly seven minutes to go in the third frame, the team’s first unit – on a night that was largely dominated by the “reserves” – flawlessly executed back-to-back plays that included nary a dribble.

[Read more...]

Cleveland Cavaliers’ Trade Exception Might Still Be Valid

Remember back a long time ago, before all this lockout hoopla when we used to discuss things like the Cleveland Cavaliers’ $14.5 million trade exception they earned in the LeBron James trade?

I know, it’s hard to remember that far back, but it’s time to start thinking trade exception again. I know what you’re thinking, “Didn’t that trade exception expire when the lockout started?”. The answer is, not necessarily.

Earlier Wednesday morning, Brian Windhorst tweeted the following: [Read more...]

Re-Sign or Release: Antawn Jamison

Back in May, 2008, we featured a little series called “Re-Sign or Release” where we went through every player on the Cavaliers roster and turned to the readers to see what they would do if they were the general manager of the Wine and Gold and – hypothetically, of course – all of the players were up to have their respective contracts renewed.

Same hypothetical this time around: We’re looking to build for the future; all players are restricted free agents, likely requiring a bit of a pay raise from last season.  Do you re-sign them? Andrew has already laid out the roadblocks currently facing the Cavaliers in 2011; now it’s your turn. Vote below and leave your support in the comments.

As expected, JJ Hickson was a near unanimous member of the All-Return team.  Surprisingly, Anthony Parker remains the only member of the 19-win Cavaliers to be voted otherwise.  Today, we stay frontcourt but mix in a considerably larger contract with Antwan Jamison. [Read more...]

Memphis Grizzlies Have No Interest In Trading Rudy Gay To Cleveland

We’ve heard plenty of rumors regarding the Cleveland Cavaliers recently, some of them legit, some of them downright laughable. The one that has seem to stuck the most, though, is the rumor that the Cavs were interested in trading for Memphis Grizzlies’ SF Rudy Gay.

Perhaps the Cavaliers did have some interest, but it was always questionable whether the Grizzlies would be interested in trading Gay. The common thought was that the Grizzlies’ playoff run without Gay made him expendable and that they would be open to shedding the giant contract they gave him last year. Dan Gilbert has proven he will spare no expense, so a deal actually kind of made sense.

But according to Grizzlies owner Mike Heisley, we can stop all that talk right now. In a phone interview with the Memphis Commercial Appeal, Heisley makes it clear that the Grizzlies are not trading Gay: [Read more...]

Cavaliers Season Ends with Many Important Lessons

Last night, Joe Tait fittingly put an end to an era.  I am not happy to see him go, but watching and listening to him end his career last night just seemed fitting.  I didn’t cry, but I didn’t dare say anything either with a lump in my throat the size of a grapefruit.  There never is a good time to say goodbye to those you love.  That goes for Joe Tait and the rest of the Cavaliers even as we all partook in one of the most difficult seasons in Cleveland Cavaliers history.  As Tait signed off for the last time, I couldn’t help but feel a sense of relief as this season leaves me with a multitude of feelings.  I feel tougher, smarter, hopeful and resilient to name a few.

The Cavaliers were schizophrenic in this season of change.  They embarrassed themselves and their fans on December 2nd in their first meeting against the Miami Heat.  They embarrassed us further with a 26 game losing streak.  In that stretch from November 30th  to February 11th when the Cavaliers finally beat the Clippers in overtime, the Cavaliers lost 36 out of 37 games.  One of those games was a 55-point defeat at the hands of the Los Angeles Lakers.  I could go on and on, but the fact remains that this season could have been the most miserable season ever.  Somehow it wasn’t though. [Read more...]

Young Cavs Team Looking to Practice Throughout Summer

Though the Cleveland Cavaliers will play their final 48-minute contest of the 2010-11 season, several players on the Wine and Gold are already discussing offseason plans to practice together even once team facilities have closed for the summer.

Despite pending collective bargaining agreement issues that could render players unable to legally meet with their coaching staff, the Cavaliers are looking to carry the momentum which they feel they have built over the course of the last several weeks well into the offseason as to better prepare themselves for next year’s challenges.  Both Antawn Jamison and Baron Davis have taken a surprising step forward this season in terms of veteran leadership and both players hope to host several of their young teammates though the summer months, Jamison in Charlotte, North Carolina and Davis on the West Coast in Los Angeles, California or Las Vegas, Nevada (previously home of the NBA’s Summer League).  [Read more...]

Cavs Deliver a Numbing Embarrassment to Fans

So, uh yeah. We didn’t forget to talk about the Cavs game from last night.  Maybe we were just as shell-shocked as you hope the guys on the Cavs’ roster were after the game.  The Cavaliers should be happy they didn’t play at home because they might have broken “the diff” section of the scoreboard.  It isn’t supposed to count all the way down to -41 in losses to the Trailblazers.  In case you were lucky enough to fall asleep early and miss this debacle, the Cavaliers lost to Portland 111-70.

Our own Andrew will lecture incessantly about just blankly reading +/- statistics from the box score because they don’t always mean a lot without perspective.  Last night from the perspective that the Cavaliers got their clocks cleaned in epic fashion, it is worth noting that Gerald Wallace and Andre Miller were both sporting +42 at the end of the game.  In fact, every Blazer starting player was at least +25. [Read more...]

Antawn Jamison’s Injury Could Cost Him the Season

The leading scorer for the 11-win Cleveland Cavaliers may be done for the rest of the season.

Sustaining a broken pinkie finger on his left hand with just over a minute left in the third quarter of Sunday’s loss to Philadelphia, veteran power forward Antawn Jamison has been given a window of 5-7 weeks of missed time by team officials. 

Jamison, averaging 18.0 points and 6.7 rebounds on the season, was in the midst of his best month as a member of the Cleveland Cavaliers.  Improving his statistics month-over-month from the beginning of the season, Jamison produced 22.0 points, 7.3 rebounds and 2.0 three-pointers per game in the month of February and was primed to continue leading the team in scoring with the departure of Mo Williams to the Los Angeles Clippers.  [Read more...]

Scott Credits Defense, Rebounding For Cavs’ Recent Success

The last three weeks have been an odd sight for Cleveland Cavaliers fans this season, as the team has suddenly reeled off three wins in the past five games.

When asked after Friday night’s 115-109 victory over the New York Knicks about what has been the key to this mild success, head coach Byron Scott said an improving defense has been the secret ingredient.

“That’s a great win for us,” Scott said. “I thought our guys are really starting to buy in to what we are talking about, especially defensively, and we’ve gotten much better at that end of the floor, and we are just going to keep trying to improve there.”

But amidst a rebuilding year when the Cavs were on pace for setting historic lows for defensive ineptitude, and after a game where the Knicks still scored 109 points at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, has this really been the case?

[Read more...]

Cavs 115, Knicks 109: No Defense, No Problem for Cleveland

These Cleveland Cavaliers have quite the knack for the theatrical this season, as evidenced by a 115-109 victory over the New York Knicks Friday night.

Two days after another depressing defeat at the hands of the Houston Rockets, the Cavs responded with authority in the surprising upset victory.

J.J. Hickson, Ramon Sessions and Antawn Jamison led the charge with 74 points and 36 rebounds as a trio in the fast-paced game. Neither team could play effective defense late, as the Cavaliers survived a furious comeback for their third win in five games.

For New York and recent acquisition Carmelo Anthony, it was a shocking fall to earth after a win over Milwaukee Thursday night. Check out more notes after the jump. [Read more...]