Dec. 29, 2014
What Does Cleveland Do Now?
In a move that will change the landscape of the Eastern Conference, Cavs center Anderson Varejao will miss the rest of the season with a torn Achilles. This injury will greatly affect an already defensive challenged Cavs team. Varejao brings an intensity to the game. He has a motor that never seems to go out. I'm a big fan of Varejao, he's capable of hitting the mid-range jumper, he's always in great defensive positioning, and he he has a knack for keeping the ball alive on offense. An underrated part of Anderson's game is the pick and roll success he has with LeBron James. I've seen a few times in late-game situations, that LeBron and Anderson will run the Pick&Roll because it spaces the floor for everyone. The team has to worry about LeBron driving to the rim, Anderson getting an easy layup, and Kyrie or Love spotting up at the 3pt line. Varejao will be missed, but the real question is who replaces him? This injury is devastating for a team that was already not very deep.
The first option is Tristan Thompson. This season, Thompson has thrived being the energy guy off the bench. He hasn't had to worry about picking up fouls, he's just been able to play really aggressively. After being the Number 4 pick in the 2011 NBA Draft, Thompson has been underwhelming. He has yet to develop an offensive game and he doesn't know if he want to shoot with his left hand or right hand. I can't see the Cavs placing Thompson in the starting lineup. The front-court then would be Thompson, Love, and James. Neither Love or Thompson are fit for the Center position and the Cavs would have no shot-blocker. Thompson is better served as the energy guy off the bench.
The Cavs have had preliminary talks with the Knicks's Samuel Dalembert. Dalembert is not a good offensive threat, but he brings size and a knack for defense. Him being six-foot-eleven is also an advantage for an undersized team. He's currently averaging 1.2 BPG, so he's no slouch. He doesn't have the best lateral quickness, but he makes up for it with a good I.Q.
I don't think the Cavs will make a trade considering they have a lack of assets, but this injury makes the East more wide-open.
Hope you enjoyed, Kyle out, peace.