That other guy we got from New York is Iman Shumpert. Unfortunately for us, he’s sidelined with a wrist surgery until about late December or so. A stout defender and excellent shooter in his own right, the Cavs will have to overcome his loss for the time being. Fortunately for us, we have other guys at the position that can step in.
Like Matthew Dellavedova! Even non-basketball fans know how crazy Delly plays basketball. Not only is he more than capable of sinking 3’s but he is one of the best defenders in the NBA. I swear he is. Opponents HATE playing against the crazy Australian because he hustles hard and will make you pay for every loose ball. He’s becoming a true fan favorite in Cleveland.
The last shooting guard I want to talk about is Jared Cunningham. Unless you watched preseason, you probably haven’t heard of this guy yet. Every so often there’s always that one guy that comes into the preseason with no expectations and just runs away with a roster spot. That was the case here. Cunningham showcased his freakish athleticism and his ability to overwhelm opponents with it and he earned the final roster spot for the Cavaliers. I have no idea what to expect from him, or how often he’ll play (if at all), but good teams never stop finding quality players.
I’m sure some of the other shooting guards will fill in at point guard here and there, but the other true point guard on the team is Mo Williams. I did backflips when I heard we brought back Mo (he was a Cavalier from 2008 and 2011). We traded him in 2011 to the Los Angeles Clippers with Jamario Moon for Baron Davis and a first round pick, which became Kyrie Irving. Funny how things come full circle like that. Williams is a true shooter, can sink shots from literally any spot on the court. And sometimes he goes cray-cray and puts up 52 points on unsuspecting teams that leave him unchecked.
When LeBron does need a breather though, we have Richard Jefferson that will take over at small forward. This was a stealth signing by GM David Griffin and it’s going to pay off. At 35, Jefferson is best used in limited minutes, which is generally how we are going to use him this season. A defensive rebound machine and a guy that has maintained a reasonably high field goal percentage, Jefferson is the perfect complement to LeBron.
Coming back for his 12th season with the Cavaliers, it’s the WILD THING, Anderson Varejao! At 33 and countless injuries, Andy has lost a step and will largely be used as a backup at power forward and, at times, center. He can still rebound like a maniac and has uncanny shooting abilities for a guy his size. I think he’s a great plug’n’play option when we need someone to change the pace of the game and I trust the Cavaliers will use him and be mindful of his health.
I’ll be the first to admit I don’t know a whole lot about Sasha Kaun. He’s been a sleeper cell in Russia for the Cavaliers for seven years and he is finally coming to play in America. Now, I have watched Sasha in preseason and to me he seems like a defensive center. We definitely have more offensive minded players on the club so some more defensive players will be appreciated. It’s interesting to see how Sasha will be used this season and if he is ready to adjust to the North American rules.
Overall, we might have the best team in the NBA. We have ridiculous amounts of depth, experience, scoring ability, and a powerful defensive presence. Last season was magical and reestablished Cleveland as a powerhouse in the NBA. We came so close to winning it all and ending this city’s title drought. Now, the Cavaliers are rearmed and regrouped and they won’t quit until that title is ours. Savor the moment and enjoy the ride!