Well, probably not. But this team is capable of covering the win spread that was given to them (the over/under was set at 24.5 wins)
The ceiling is the roof-Michael Jordan
The Cavs were +8.5 in Orlando for their season opener. What to expect from this young team was up in the air. They played Detroit close in the preseason, blowing a 20 point lead can be summed to youth. As a longtime Cleveland optimist, I picked them to cover here. With a new coach it’s always hard to gauge how things will go off the bat. John Beilein is heralded for building culture and developing players. He rolled with the vet TT at center, and the rook DG at point, alongside “Young Bull” at the 2. He played a big part in the draft process and said he’s brewing a “renaissance of Cavalier basketball”. The half court offense had flow that was absent last year.
“Sex-Land” will be dangerous when the two young guards start sharing the ball as one. Garland had a solid debut as the first 2000’s born player to play in an NBA game. He needs to establish himself as a green light shooter and he did that by hitting two deep 3’s. His 5 assists were a game high. Kevin Love needs more shots. He’s an all-star when healthy and 10 FGA isn’t enough for someone who can put it in the bucket like him. Regardless, he played excellent with 11 18 and 3. Tristan Thompson looks as good as he’s ever been. He and the Cavs’ frontcourt out-rebounded Orlando’s. To no surprise he was the game-leading offensive rebounder. His ability to score in the paint followed the trend he set last season. He showed he’s not afraid to take a jumper if needed. If he keeps shooting them, they’ll fall. Last year was a career year average-wise, riddled with injuries. If he stays healthy he could find himself in the all-star conversation.
Darius Garland is the first NBA player born in the 2000’s to play in an NBA game.
Collin Sexton had a poor shooting night but shot 3/8 from 3. He missed a good outside look late to bring the game within 3 and didn’t give up until the very last second. While Markelle Fultz had an impressive outing, Young Bull played good defense and showed tenacity. Cedi Osman shot well at 55% and 50% from 3 and was the only Cavalier with a positive +/-. Unlike Jordan Clarkson, who went out shooting on 2-16 despite a nice and-1 jumper. Kevin Porter Jr., too, who went 0/6. KPJ showed flashes of play making. When he realized he’d drawn many defenders trying to guard him, he dished it for an easy bucket, he’s tough to guard when he gets it going. If this facet of his game blossoms, he’ll be unarguable. KPJ got the least minutes, there are a lot of hungry mouths to feed. Despite looking good in the preseason, Brandon Knight and Dean Wade didn’t see any action. Compared to last year, the Cavs are healthy now. Only Henson, Windler, and Zizic sat out injured.
Cleveland failed to cover Wednesday’s spread by a point. If they continue to work hard, play for each other, and learn from losses, the 24.5 win line will squashed. This team packs a lot of potential. Give me the over. In Beilein we trust.