If you’re a fan of the Cleveland Cavaliers, chances are you’re only smiling about a few things these days. The positives include the strong play of Kevin Porter Jr. last year, the emergence of Collin Sexton as an elite scorer, and having the #5 pick in the upcoming NBA Draft.
The addition of Andre Drummond at the trade deadline had some rave reviews, but that’s mostly where the good news ends. They lost their final game before the stoppage to a hapless Chicago Bulls squad. They finished the year 19-46. The John Beilein experience likely played a role in stunting the development of Darius Garland by a few months.
So, where do the Cavs go from here?
Decide Who the Starting Point Guard Is
Collin Sexton and Darius Garland started together in Cleveland’s backcourt last year, and after the first five minutes, they weren’t on the court at the same time much. Sexton thrived as a scorer, while Garland was better off running the offense and trying to find the open man.
The thing about Garland, is that he lacks confidence on the offensive end. He can be a bit too passive at times, and can struggle to run the offense. Collin on the other hand can get a little trigger happy and start firing shots from all over the place. But the rate at which he was scoring proves that he was doing just what he should have been, and going off.
The answer here is a pretty easy one. Collin Sexton, for the great scorer he is, should be the starting point guard. Garland could thrive in a sixth man role, coming in and bringing shooting and playmaking off the bench. He also has a lot of work to do defensively, so starting him next to Collin could pose issues.
More Minutes for Kevin Porter Jr.
If you haven’t yet heard of Kevin Porter Jr., you’ve probably been living under a rock. He wasn’t a star by any means for the Cavs in his rookie year, but he was capable of big nights. Porter has fantastic ball-handling ability, and is an explosive dunker. You may remember him flexing after a dunk against the 76ers with the team down by 40+.
But aside from that laughable offense, Porter is a fantastic player. He can knock the three down, he’s explosive in transition, and he’s also a fantastic passer. Porter’s minutes fluctuated last year. Some nights he may play 15 minutes, and others, 30-35. The team is no doubt better when he’s on the floor.
KPJ should be the one starting next to Collin Sexton on opening night next year.
Figure Out Who You Want to Draft
The 2020 NBA Draft is full of intrigue for so many teams. This is a rare instance where we have no idea what player any team has at the top of their wish list. There are endless options for so many teams, including the Cavs.
They pick #5, so it may be a case of best player available. If they want to grab a center, Onyeka Okongwu and James Wiseman are the top two options. But, drafting a big man would be unwise given that they have Andre Drummond, and could re-sign Tristan Thompson. Both of those guys have a lot to offer.
What they should be doing, is finding a wing player that can play both effectively on both ends of the floor. Isaac Okoro has been a big name from many Cavs fans weighing in on social media. He can shoot it well, and is a terrific defender. He and Devin Vassell are two names to keep an eye on.
It is unlikely that either guy is off the board when the Cavs pick, so that should be the move. There is no reason to take a ball-dominant guard for the third year in a row. No reason to add another big man to take minutes away from the guys they already have.