The World Series starts tonight in Boston. BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!! That might be the last sentence about baseball I write on this site until April. Just thought I’d throw that out there. Go Rockies!!!
Let’s turn our attention to basketball. The season starts in less than a week but the defending Eastern Conference Cavs open play in exactly one week on Halloween Night when the Dallas Mavericks come to town. The 2007-08 Cavilers will have an uphill battle as they try to defend their conference title. I found a check list of things Cavs GM Danny Ferry wanted to do this offseason. Let’s look at it and see how many got accomplished.
Sign a free agent point guard: un-accomplished.
Sign a shooter: un-accomplished.
Sign a big man: does Cedric Simmons count? Probably not.
Sign any player that will see more than 4 minutes a game and average more than 1.2 ppg: un-accomplished.
Resign Anderson Varejao: un-accomplished.
Resign Sasha Pavlovic: un-accomplishd.
Visit alma mater and give a inspirational speech to the football team: accomplished.
Sign any impact player: un-accomplished.
Play basketball at the YMCA to show I can still shoot: half accomplished (I played basketball but realized I never could shoot).
Sit on couch in fetal position knowing that I’m in way over my head and I’m a horrible GM: ACCOMPLISHED.
Solid offseason Danny. To sum up, your best move was trading David Wesley for Simmons. Since Wesley was a waste of space and going to retire it was smart to move him for a young, raw, big man. However, I stop short of calling it a good move because you were the one who brought Wesley in here last year. All I’ll remember from the David Wesley Era is his break-a-way lay-up that he the bottom of the rim.
What did you do this summer Danny? You didn’t have any draft pick so you couldn’t help the team there. You didn’t make any trades other than the fore mentioned Simmons trade. You didn’t sign any player other than a bench role player who had a “breakout” year last year when he averaged 11 ppg. You had to key members of your team up for free agency and you didn’t sign them. So what exactly did you do? I don’t even have a joke here about what you did because it makes no sense what you’ve done the last 3 months. I’m getting mad writing this now.
OK, so you didn’t make any big offseason trades or signings. Not the end of the world. One of the reasons the Cavs played so well at the end of last season was the camaraderie they shared. Everyone knew their role, and a different person stepped on different nights. The one advantage Cleveland had over other teams is they would have the exact same team coming back into a system they were just learning last year. Familiarity, was weak as it sounds, was the Cavs advantage. But, of course, that hinged on everyone coming back. So what does Ferry do? He got cheap and hard-headed with two keep members.
Obviously the biggest issue is not resigning of Anderson and Sasha. Why? At the end of the season Sasha was finally showing his talent. He was still inconsistent but he was very good, fit into the system, LeBron liked him and he’s extremely talented.
Then there’s Anderson. The most important person of the bench and arguably the most important player after LeBron. You have a coach who preaches defense and rebounding and here is a guy who lives to do those two things, and you don’t make a serious effort to bring him back? Did you not notice how much loud the crowd gets when he comes into the game? Did you not notice how the game changes when he’s in? He might be the only guy who averages 5 ppg that other teams hate to see come into the game. Other teams hate playing against him. He’s always doing something good while pissing the other team off. You have to bring him back for whatever he wants because this is a guy you want on your team. It shouldn’t take him putting on a different jersey and drawing 12 charges and three technical fouls on the Cave to make you realize that.
Supposedly, Anderson wants like $10 million a year. Give it to him. You aren’t the Indians. You have an owner that is willing to overspend if needed. It’s needed in this case.
While the rest of the East got leaps and bounds better this summer, thanks to Danny Ferry, the Cavs did nothing. Boston’s better, Chicago’s better, Detroit’s better. The Cavs right now may only be the fourth best team in the East, and that’s being generous. Danny, please, please, please, get a deal with Anderson done. It needs to happen. Then turn your attention to Sasha. The Cavs need him too. Right now I don’t feel to confident about this year. Yeah, with LeBron the Cavs will still be good and fun to watch. They’ll make the playoffs and in the NBA it only takes on superstar to make a postseason run. But it would be easier if that superstar had all his weapons. LeBron said it best. He had an interview in the Akron Beacon Journal Tuesday.
Q: In your opinion, where is the team right now?
LJB: WE still have a long way to go. We have thing to (iron) out.
Q: How much better or worse are you guys without (Anderson and Sasha)?
LBJ: Oh, we’re worse. We’re not as good as we were if we have those guys. It’s simple. We all know that.
Now if only Danny can pull himself out of the fetal position on his couch, read that interview and do something about it.