As the NBA passes the fourth week of the season, there are a few teams that are off to good starts. The Cleveland Cavaliers are one of them.
The Boston Celtics remain the top team of the league as they have a record of 9-1. The Lakers aren’t too far behind, as they have only lost two games so far. To some fans, the Celtics’ and Lakers’ hot starts come as no surprise. However, there are a few teams that are genuinely surprising.
This season, teams such as the Miami Heat, the Toronto Raptors (despite losing Kawhi Leonard), and the Pheonix Suns are all playing well. They are over .500 by a few games and if the playoffs started today, they are all playoff teams.
In the East, there are five teams tied for the seventh seed. The Atlanta Hawks, the Brooklyn Nets, and several other teams are under .500 (and have the same record). The Cleveland Cavaliers are one of the teams in the mix.
As of now, the Cavaliers have a record of 4-7. They have lost their last two games, but they played well in the first one. In fact, they only lost by one point.
The Cavs have a losing record, but the season is far from over. Despite their record, there is still a glimpse of hope.
Naturally, I have watched all of the Cavs’ games this season. And I must admit, I like what I see. The veterans (Kevin Love and Tristan Thompson) have meshed with the Cavs’ younger core (Cedi Osman, Collin Sexton, Darius Garland, and so on), which makes the Cavs look like an actual team at times.
Love and Thompson have been double-double machines this season, as both players have at least seven double-doubles this season. Love has seven, and Thompson has eight. Both players had double-doubles in their first four games of the season, and Love extended the streak with five.
As far as averages, Love averages 18.7 points and 12.6 rebounds and Thompson averages 15.2 points and 10.6 rebounds. So, the veterans are playing well.
The veterans are not alone, as young players like Collin Sexton have stepped up. Sexton averages 18.4 points as well as 3.2 rebounds. The sophomore is picking up where he left off from the second half of last season and continues to improve.
On top of Sexton playing well, young players such as Garland have shown promise. One of their biggest issues is consistency. If Garland and the others can find a rhythm, the Cavs will be even better.
Under John Beilein, the Cavs are playing like a team. There have been games where at least five players scored in double-figures. Beilein has them playing as a unit, and it works to their benefit. And, the Cavs have been rewarded with a few wins in the process.
The Cavaliers are decent so far, and people are taking notice. While their record doesn’t reflect it, the Cavs are promising. Despite seven losses, Cleveland managed to put up a fight. Most of their losses have been close and merely came down to a bad quarter (be it the first or the fourth). So, I like what I’ve seen so far.
While it is still early in the season, the Cavs look promising. Are they a playoff team? Probably not. But there are off to a good start.
Image Credit: Gus Chan, The Plain Dealer
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