The Cavaliers are 14th in the Eastern Conference with a record of 13-36. Can we at least get two more wins?
Another day, another Cavaliers loss. Despite a few bright spots throughout the season, I am officially used to the Cavs losing this season. Now, after a 15-point win over the Pistons on Monday, the Cavs are back on a losing streak.
On Thursday, the Cavs lost to the Toronto Raptors. In their first of three consecutive home games, Cleveland lost a close one to the defending champs. The Raptors won 115-109 in what is their ninth straight win.
Surprisingly, I’m not upset at this game. The Raptors are one of the Eastern Conference’s best teams (even without Kawhi Leonard), and with their current win streak, the Cavaliers are just another team that was caught in the Raptors blaze. The Cavaliers also had five players in double figures, which included both Collin Sexton and Kevin Love scoring 23. So, it safe to say the Cavs were decent in this game.
The games that I am concerned about are recent losses to teams such as the Bulls, the Knicks, the Wizards, and the Pelicans. In the standings, these teams are just as bad or worse than the Cavaliers. These are games that I expect the Cavaliers to win, and as a result (slightly) improve their rankings in the East. However, this is not the case. The Cavs have lost easy games, and it makes me question; can they reach 15 wins?
As we approach the NBA Trade Deadline (and All-Star Weekend), the season is a little over the halfway point. The Trade Deadline gives teams a chance to make moves in hopes of improving their roster or planning for the future. In the case of a contender, a team like the Lakers may try to add someone like a Chris Paul or Kevin Love. Or, the Lakers could add a veteran role player like Andre Iguodala. Either way, the deadline benefits teams, both contending and rebuilding.
As the Cavs approach the Trade Deadline, both Love and Tristan Thompson have been the subject of trade rumors. The veterans have been decent in the season and could potentially attract suitors. It all depends on how the Cavaliers want to approach their rebuild.
I bring up the veterans and the deadline to say this; if the Cavs trade one or both of them, it will likely affect their season (in a bad way). If they keep them, the Cavs had at least a better chance of reaching 15 wins. The deadline is next Thursday, so if Cleveland does trade Love and Thompson, they have at least three more games with both players.
For the next three games, the Cavaliers have the Golden State Warriors, the Knicks, and the Oklahoma City Thunder. If Cleveland plays well, they can at least win two out of three games. They’ve lost to the Knicks but still have a chance at beating them, and the Warriors are worse than the Cavs this season. Do you know what this means? The Cavaliers may reach 15 wins, which is all I ask.
Last season, the Cavaliers finished with a record of 19-63. While they could potentially win more this season, 15 is a number I’ll accept.
The Cavaliers have 33 games left this season, so there is still time for them to reach that number. If the Cavaliers play to their true capabilities (which they’ve shown at points in the season), they can at least reach 15. If not, there is always next year.
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Image Source: John Kuntz, Cleveland.com