INDEPENDENCE: Bradley Beal thinks the Washington Wizards have the best backcourt in the NBA.
"That's nonsense," Dion Waiters said Tuesday. "He's supposed to say that, but I know deep down they're not messing with me and Ky. I think me and Ky are the best young backcourt."
As Waiters walked away, he added, "Y'all already knew I was going to say that."
Within hours, the Wizards' John Wall responded.To read more or comment...
INDEPENDENCE: LeBron James has spent more time working with Dion Waiters on the mental side of the game than the physical. Perhaps the most important lesson he’s trying to teach Waiters is to disregard what people say.
Waiters has been blamed for much of the Cavs’ locker room problems the last couple years. Teammates quietly grumbled about him (and to a lesser extent Kyrie Irving) as the locker room and season unraveled last season. James watched it all from Miami.
“Every team there’s a guy they want to kind of place the blame on. It would be Dion on our team,” James said. “I told him, ‘You can’t get involved in that or what people say about you. It’s not what people think of you it’s what you think of yourself.’
“The only way to rewrite the notion of, ‘Can Dion fit in this?’ is to play the right way and dominate his opposition every single night. That’s all he should worry about.”To read more or comment...
INDEPENDENCE: David Blatt is doing his best to pump the brakes on the preseason expectations surrounding the Cavaliers. Whether or not it works remains to be seen.
Despite beginning the season as favorites to win an NBA championship, Blatt said the Cavs aren’t yet an elite team.
“I would just like a little bit of time to see how this comes together so I understand how quickly we’re going to be able to move toward becoming a top-level team, which we are not right now,” he said Sunday. “It’s too early. We have to really see how the combinations go, how the players take to one another, how they take to the system. But obviously there’s a lot to look forward to and a lot to expect.”
Blatt directed a morning workout Sunday dedicated on skill work. The Cavs will complete their first two-a-day of training camp when they return Sunday night for more live work.To read more or comment...
INDEPENDENCE: The Cavaliers are expected to sign guards Stephen Holt and Chris Crawford and forward Shane Edwards for training camp purposes, a league source told the Beacon Journal on condition of anonymity because the moves are not yet official.
Holt, who played with Matthew Dellavedova at St. Mary, is awaiting a letter of clearance from his German club. Edwards played briefly with the Cavs last season and is still property of the Canton Charge, while Crawford recently cleared waivers after the Cavs released him on Thursday.
The Cavs were forced to release Crawford for luxury tax purposes. Had he still been on the books, it would've complicated Thursday's trade for Keith Bogans, whom the Cavs flipped to the 76ers on Saturday for a trade exception.
The Cavs are down to 15 bodies after the recent trades. Teams are allotted 20 during camp.To read more or comment...
INDEPENDENCE: David Blatt’s first NBA coaching job evolved into a super team before he even drew up his first play. There are challenges associated with that, of course, particularly earning the respect of stars such as LeBron James, Kevin Love and Kyrie Irving. But it’s still a good problem to have..
“He could have the alternative and not have me, Kevin and Kyrie,” James joked Saturday after the Cavs’ first practice as a super team. “It’s going to be tough no matter what.”
Blatt conduced his first practice with the Cavaliers on Saturday, and while it was a hard practice, Blatt isn’t expected to wear out his players with an overly grueling camp.
Teams are typically allotted four two-a-day practices, but the Cavs are permitted six since they started early and must travel to Brazil in two weeks. Blatt doesn’t expect to use them all.To read more or comment...
INDEPENDENCE: The Cavaliers have traded Keith Bogans and a 2018 second-round pick to the Philadelphia 76ers, the team announced on Saturday. The move gives the Cavs a $5.3 million trade exception without taking up a roster spot.
Bogans was a Cav for less than 48 hours. He was obtained Thursday night in exchange for four players and two second-round picks, but one league source with knowledge of the situation indicated the Cavs obviously never had interest in keeping Bogans on the roster. By moving him now, they’ll have one year to use the exception.
The exception cannot be combined with any other players, meaning they cannot combine it with Brendan Haywood’s non-guaranteed contract next summer. But the Cavs feel Haywood’s $10.5 million non-guaranteed contract by itself will be large enough to obtain any player they could realistically pursue.
The Cavs also obtain a heavily protected second-round pick in next summer's draft from the Sixers, but it's unlikely they'll ever see the pick. The Cavs training camp roster is now down to 15 players.To read more or comment...
Cleveland Cavaliers forward Mike Miller recognizes what’s happening with his new team. After all, he’s seen it before as a member of the Miami Heat.
That recognition provides some insight and perhaps a look into the future of what could be with the NBA’s latest super team that includes LeBron James, Kevin Love and Kyrie Irving.
“Fortunately for us, we had an almost identical situation in Miami,” Miller said during the team’s media day, “and now we get to take what we learned - the good and the bad - and bring it to a different situation and have a second opportunity at it.”
Their first season together that Heat team – which had James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh as its core – got off to a 9-8 start, not exactly the stuff dynasties are made. But it allows Miller, who played 41 games that first year of the “Heatles” to pump the brakes on the Cavs expectations just a wee bit.To read more or comment...
INDEPENDENCE: Kevin Love has never even appeared in a postseason game, but he understands the expectations on him now are to deliver a title – and he’s embracing it.
“I know a lot of people want to say championship or bust,” Love said Friday during the Cavaliers’ media day. “That’s going to be a good mentality to have because we want the pressure. We want people to look at us as one of the best teams because we’re going to have to hold ourselves accountable for everything that we do and our actions on and off the floor.”
Love was obtained in a blockbuster trade with the Minnesota Timberwolves last month and initially took the high road at his introductory press conference, complimenting the Timberwolves and choosing to focus on the good times.
But after Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor leveled some digs at Love about his injury history and lack of defense, Love slipped in a dig of his own Friday.To read more or comment...
Something still uncertain as the Cavs begin camp Saturday is whether guard Dion Waiters – who LeBron James has offered praise – will start or come off the bench.
“As long as I’m out there, I’m going to do whatever I have to do for this team,” Waiters said when asked about his status.
As for James’ vote of confidence, he said that it provides motivation.
“At the end of the day, you appreciate it and it makes you work that much harder just knowing that he sees the talent and at the end of the day I have to keep doing what I’m doing,” Waiters said.To read more or comment...
INDEPENDENCE: Kyrie Irving ended last season as the face, voice and leader of a beleaguered franchise. Now entering his fourth season, he returns as the youngest player on a dramatically reshaped roster.
Irving is perhaps the biggest beneficiary of the Cavs’ summer overhaul. Despite starting in the All-Star game and earning the MVP award in February, he admittedly failed to meet lofty expectations last season.
He appeared at Cavaliers media day Friday fresh off another dazzling MVP performance, this time in the FIBA World Cup, and one of the pillars that comprises the Cavs’ newly formed Big Three.
“Looking back on my third year, it didn’t go as well as I planned, but I’m OK with that,” Irving said. “I’m OK with learning from mistakes last year, all those things I did well and all those things I did kind of terrible at the time. Like I said, I am a young guy still figuring it out.”To read more or comment...
The Beacon Journal reported earlier this week that Cavs forward Tristan Thompson will seek $11 million a year when he begins negotiations for a contract extension.
That number is similar to that given to Derrick Favors ($49 million) and Larry Sanders ($44 million). In three years with the Cavs, Thompson averaged 10.8 points and 8.6 rebounds per game. He’s in the final year of his rookie deal and can become a restricted free agent next season if he and the Cavs cannot come to a deal this season.
There is reason to believe something could be worked out. Thompson and LeBron James have the same agent: Rich Paul.
When asked about his contract situation, he made it sound as if it is the furthest thing from his mind.To read more or comment...
INDEPENDENCE: Before LeBron James could return home to the Cavaliers, he first had to clear it with his children.
James said during Friday’s media day he sat down with his two young boys, Bryce and LeBron Jr., to ask them how they felt about moving back to Ohio.
“You get to play with Kyrie Irving?” they asked, which made James chuckle then and now. “We get to go back home to hour house? Am I getting to go back to my old school and old friends?”
When James answered yes to all of their questions, both boys gave their blessing and James was on his way.To read more or comment...
The Cavaliers are conducting media day today in Independence.To read more or comment...
The Cavaliers acquired veteran wing Keith Bogans from the Boston Celtics Thursday night, the team announced. The Cavs will send Erik Murphy, Malcolm Thomas, John Lucas III and Dwight Powell to the Celtics, along with second-round picks in 2016 and 2017, in exchange for Bogans. The Cavs also receive second-round picks from Sacramento in 2015 and 2017, but both selections are top 55 protected, meaning it's unlikely the Cavs will ever see either one.
The Cavs have been shopping for another rim protector to add to the frontcourt, but with center Brendan Haywood ahead of schedule and the market for bigs fairly thin, the Cavs packaged a quarted of players who weren’t going to make the team anyway and a couple of low picks for Bogans, a 6-foot-5 guard/forward who has a non-guaranteed contract in excess of $5 million both this season and next.
By keeping Bogans and Haywood around all season, the Cavs will have about $16 million in non-guaranteed salaries next summer to use in another blockbuster trade. They already acquired Kevin Love in a mega deal this offseason.
ESPN.com first reported the trade.To read more or comment...
LeBron James concedes it would've been much harder for him to return to the Cavaliers had the Miami Heat won a third consecutive championship in June, he told CNN's Unguarded with Rachel Nichols in an upcoming episode.
"It's a greater chance, for sure," James said. "It would be hard to leave back-to-back-to-back championships and try to go for four. But obviously you really can't live and think of what may have happened. I've always been a person kind of live in the moment."
The Heat lost to the Spurs in five games and James returned home, but only after a meeting with Cavs owner Dan Gilbert mended a relationship that was detonated the night James bolted the Cavs for Miami.To read more or comment...
Twenty-three thoughts for the return of No. 23 with the start of training camp just days away…
1. Don’t rule out the possibility of Tristan Thompson starting at center. While it has been widely assumed Anderson Varejao would start in the middle, a theory has been floated within the organization recently that by starting Thompson, coach David Blatt could better limit Varejao’s minutes and help protect him from injury. There is plenty of time to make that final decision, but it’s worth noting the idea has at least been discussed.
2. Regardless of whether he starts, Thompson is expected to play a lot of minutes at center this season. He is undersized there, but athletic enough to handle the job. He has played there off and on throughout his first three years in the league.
3. What hasn’t been discussed is a contract extension for him – at least not yet. The two sides haven’t really discussed numbers, one source involved in the process said recently, but that isn’t a surprise. Kyrie Irving is the only member of the 2011 class thus far to sign an extension, although guys like Klay Thompson, Kenneth Faried and Kawhi Leonard could be next. The deadline to sign is Oct. 31.To read more or comment...
The Cleveland Cavaliers open training camp with media day on Friday. Jason Lloyd talks about a lot of different aspects of the team from what to expect this camp, what roster moves remain, how does new coach David Blatt fit into the equation, LeBron James, and much more.
To read more or comment...
Lou Amundson signed a one-year, non-guaranteed deal with the Cavaliers, a league source confirmed. Although the Cavs’ rebuilt roster is filling up fast, the veteran journeyman stands a decent chance at making the final cut.
Amundson, 31, has already played for eight teams in eight years, averaging 3.6 points and 3.5 rebounds. But he is a gritty defender and could bring a certain toughness to the post. He’s listed at 6-foot-9 and 225 pounds, but the Cavs believe he can block shots and use his athleticism to defend at the center position despite being undersized.
Amundson’s offensive limitations have forced him to bounce around the league, yet the Cavs certainly don’t need any more scorers. They’re looking for options in the post behind Anderson Varejao at center and they’re impressed by Amundson’s per 36 numbers.
Although he has played sparingly at many stops in his career, he averages 10.1 rebounds and 2 blocks per every 36 minutes he’s on the floor.To read more or comment...
Nike unveiled LeBron James’ newest shoe, the LeBron 12, at its headquarters Tuesday in Beaverton, Ore. The shoe, which retails for $200, will initially launch Oct. 1 in China and Oct. 11 globally.
James and the Cavaliers, incidentally, will be in Brazil on Oct. 11 playing his former team, the Miami Heat, in a preseason game. The shoe will have six more color schemes, which will launch sporadically between Oct. 30 and Dec. 20 – just in time for Christmas.
James is Nike's most powerful footwear mogul outside of the Jordan brand.
The full press release can be found here.To read more or comment...
Cavs tickets have been in demand since LeBron James announced his return — season-ticket packages sold out that same day. Additonally, the Cincinnati Enquirer reported Friday that Xavier’s allotment of 3,000 tickets to the Oct. 15 preseason game between the Cavs and Indiana Pacers sold out in 10 minutes.
Those tickets were set aside for Xavier season ticket holders and donors, according to the Enquirer, while students lined up around Cintas Center on Friday for their chance at 900 student tickets. The game will be played at Cintas Center on Xavier’s campus.To read more or comment...
The Cavaliers announced the signing of Shawn Marion on Tuesday after he agreed to join the team last month. Terms of the deal were not released, but it’s believed to be a one-year deal for the league minimum.
Marion, 36, joins the Cavs after spending the last five years with the Dallas Mavericks. He has been a starter throughout his 15 seasons, but will come off the bench for a Cavs team now loaded with talent.
“I’m excited to be a Cavalier,” Marion said in a release. “I can see the hunger and mentality of everyone in the organization and l look forward to being a part of it. The goal is to win a championship and that’s what I want.”
Marion, a four-time All-Star, already won one title as a member of the Mavericks. He has averaged 15.8 points and 9 rebounds throughout his career, averaging 10.4 points and 6.5 rebounds last season with the Mavericks.To read more or comment...
Kyrie Irving appears to have escaped an injury scare relatively unscathed during Team USA’s 95-71 victory against Ukraine in Thursday’s World Cup preliminary round.
Irving landed hard on his tailbone and remained on the ground for several moments before he was helped off the court and limped to the locker room late in the game. Irving told ESPN after the game the fall looked worse than it was and wrote on his Twitter account he’s fine.
“I’m all good everybody, just a tough fall,” Irving wrote. “Appreciate the concern.”
Irving told ESPN he will not miss any time. The Americans play again on Saturday in the round of 16 in Barcelona.To read more or comment...