The Cleveland Cavaliers made a blockbuster series of trades that now has them in the driver seat in front of the Eastern Conference. The Cavs traded away Derrick Rose, Dwayne Wade, Isaiah Thomas, Jae Crowder, Channing Frye, and Iman Shumpert. They basically dumped a good portion of their team. They acquired in the process young and upcoming NBA stars such as Jordan Clarkson, Larry Nance Jr. Along with established players Rodney Hood and George Hill.
LeBron James was the main reason for this rebuild, and I don’t want to hear what anyone else thinks.
The Cavs have a new GM in Koby Altman who basically submitted to LeBron’s terms and asked him about his thoughts in a 1 on 1 sit down about the current team and how they could be better through trading.
LeBron was the focal point in a last minute rebuild that has the entire league upside down. This way LeBron is provided with that depth of solid production that can boost his talents in order to take the Cavs back to the NBA Finals. It’s no secret that Dan Gilbert and LeBron have a rocky relationship, but is it that rocky to the point where LeBron won’t consider coming back?
LeBron came back to Cleveland because he had felt that he owed the city a championship. LeBron felt that Northeast Ohio and the kids that grow up their should have a personal role model; an inspiration from the city of Akron. He came back because he is providing for the city that provided for him. Akron, Ohio. That’s why I deep down believe LeBron isn’t going to leave. Especially now after the trades.
There’s even an article, when LeBron originally came back to Cleveland; his underlining reason as to why he’s coming back: Credit to Sports Illustrated in 2014- LeBron: I’m coming back to Cleveland
After winning a ring with Cleveland, does LeBron feel a little less inclined to help he city of Cleveland from a business perspective? He shouldn’t. The beauty of being the best player in the NBA comes with all the money that can be provided. But it sounds like it isn’t about the $ with LeBron.
Could LeBron make the leap to the young and upcoming Lakers? He might, considering California is big for wine. LeBron does love his wine. He’s always on instagram promoting his affection for it. But Isaiah Thomas may drive LeBron off because of his horrible defense. That’s another discussion that I don’t want to get into.
LeBron ultimately controls the Cavs at the end of the day. If the Cavs couldn’t trade LeBron, then they traded in order to keep LeBron. With this new roster, and the prospects of the draft; LeBron will stay, asking for money that even Dan Gilbert would have to give LeBron himself, along with the Cavs bankroll.
Where do the Cavs matchup against the NBA’s Top 5?
This trade was greatly executed by GM Koby Altman off of LeBron’s suggestions. I think this puts the Cavs at the #3 spot. I don’t think they can beat the Warriors. They can make push against the Rockets, but Houston has too many weapons that can rattle off. The Cavs definitely overtake the Celtics unfortunately. Without Gordon Hayward, the Celts are missing that one big that can grab boards and score buckets. That’s why they got blown out by the new look Cavs, because of that missing piece.
The Celtics could even push off the Cavs if the Cavs go into a slump again. The Celts are an extremely close 2 to the Cavs being #1.
Of course, it won’t matter if the Rockets are better than the Cavs because the Cavs are in the East. The only competition the Cavs need to worry about for that NBA finals bid, is the Celtics.
The Toronto Raptors, however, as of February 14th, 2018 control the 1st place spot in the Eastern Conference. You bet I have them at #4, not being better than the Celts. The problem with the Raptors is that they are average on the road, and amazing at home. That will guarantee a first-round exit in the playoffs. They’re 16-12 on the road. Which is fine, if you want to lose. The Celts are 21-10 at home. They are just as good on the road, going 19-8. I don’t talk about the Raptors cause it’s not worth talking about honestly. Yes, the Raptors will win a home playoff game, but 2? Not sure.
The 5th best team per my opinion is the Timberwolves. The Timberwolves and the Spurs matchup very similar. But if the T-wolves played the Spurs, I think the T-wolves would be too much for an aging Spurs team that lacks that spark plug on offense.
I am very excited to see what will happen with this new Cavs team. The playoffs will definitely be worth watching this year considering all the talent in the NBA today. I personally think the Warriors will win it again, the talent within is just too ridiculous to lose. I’ll be hoping to see the Celts in the finals. LeBron James should never be counted out, (maybe with the old Cavs team). But with a new Cavs team, the matchup will be extremely cool to watch. (Yes, Cavs/Celtics Eastern Conference Finals).