Anderson Varejao will be the Cavs' starting center in Thursday night's opener against the New York Knicks, coach David Blatt said Friday.
Blatt emphasized that Tristan Thompson may get the call over Varejao at times this season. But Blatt cited LeBron James' familiarity with Varejao as the major reason. A 10-year veteran, Varejao played /// seasons with James.
"That was more or less the idea of beginning with Andy, just because those two guys are so good together," Blatt said after practice at Cleveland Clinic Courts. "Tristan is equally as efficient in either case. That's more or less the basis. It doesn't mean that Tristan won't be starting some of the games; I'm sure he will be. Just right now that's the way we're looking to go.
"Those guys for us are interchangeable. We value them both in exactly the same way and their contribution I hope will continue to be exactly what it was in the whole preseason -- similar, high level and efficient."
MEMPHIS, Tenn.: Twenty-two thoughts for 22 Cavs fast-break points Wednesday after they concluded the preseason 5-2 following a 96-92 loss to the Grizzlies…
1. In discussing LeBron James’ impact on a game, one current Cavs player put it this way: “He can decide who he wants to get going and who he wants to have a big game. You saw it a couple weeks ago with Kevin (Love) and the other night with Andy (Varejao).”
2. In the game against the Heat in Rio, James had the assist on each of Love’s first three baskets and five of his nine. Most of his looks were wide open, and after the game Cavs coach David Blatt commended Love for how quickly he fit into the Cavs. That happened, of course, because James took it upon himself to get Love going.
3. It was Varejao’s turn against the Bulls, perhaps the best defensive team in the league with a perennial Defensive Player of the Year candidate at center in Joakim Noah. Varejao scored 22 points in 23 minutes, and while James only assisted on three of Varejao’s 10 baskets, he was on the floor during eight of them.To read more or comment...
MEMPHIS, Tenn: The Cavaliers appear to have escaped the preseason with 15 healthy bodies and a good portion of their high-powered offense installed. Under the circumstances, that makes October a winning month.
The Cavs closed their preseason with a 96-92 loss to the Memphis Grizzlies on Wednesday, a game they played without LeBron James. Coach David Blatt also yanked the rest of the starters prior to the start of the fourth quarter and finished the game with guys who will comprise the end of the roster.
Kyrie Irving had 16 points and three assists, Kevin Love had 12 points and eight rebounds and Dion Waiters had 15 points when they exited in the third quarter, accounting for 43 of the Cavs’ 67 points entering the fourth.
Tristan Thompson had nine points and five rebounds off the bench after Anderson Varejao again started at center, but battled foul trouble and scored two points in 16 minutes.To read more or comment...
MEMPHIS, Tenn.: The NBA’s current draft lottery system will remain in place after 13 teams voted no to a proposal that would make it more difficult for the worst teams to win the No. 1 pick, Yahoo Sports reported. The vote was held Wednesday at the Board of Governors meeting in New York.
The Cavaliers, recently the biggest benefactors of the current system, voted in favor of better balancing the odds between the non-playoff teams, according to Yahoo, which reported the 13 teams that voted down the proposal: the Phoenix Suns, Philadelphia 76ers, Oklahoma City Thunder, New Orleans Pelicans, Detroit Pistons, Miami Heat, Milwaukee Bucks, San Antonio Spurs, Utah Jazz, Washington Wizards, Atlanta Hawks, Charlotte Bobcats and Chicago Bulls.
The Cavs had the worst cumulative record the last four years and won three of those lotteries, but they never won with the best odds. They jumped from the eighth slot in 2011 to win it with a 2.8 percent chance, they leaped from third in 2013 with a 15.6 percent chance and defied the odds again in May when they came up from ninth for another stunning win on just a 1.7 percent chance.
They traded two of those top picks for Kevin Love and now are the favorites to win the East.To read more or comment...
COLUMBUS: If Monday’s preseason showing was any indication, the Cavs/Bulls series will be the highlight of the Eastern Conference this season.
Kyrie Irving had 28 points and seven assists and LeBron James had 18 points, seven rebounds and six assists in the Cavs’ 107-98 victory at Value City Arena.
Cavs coach David Blatt said this would closely resemble a regular season game in terms of rotation and minutes and it certainly did. Four of the five starters played at least 30 mintues, with Anderson Varejao being the only exception. Varejao managed 22 points and eight rebounds in just 23 minutes.
This night might ultimately be remembered as the night Derrick Rose reintroduced himself to the NBA. Rose looked as explosive as ever, blowing by any defender the Cavs put in front of him to score 30 points in only 24 minutes while shooting 12-for-18. Rose added five rebounds, three assists and did not turn the ball over.
He entered shooting just 41 percent in the preseason and 33 percent on 3-pointers. Yet he moved fluidly Monday, making 3 of 4 3-pointers and pulling the Bulls within 51-49 at the half before sitting much of the second half.To read more or comment...