2009-10 Season Summary:
When Shaq was acquired last offseason, his mission and magical quote was to "win a ring for the king." FAIL. The Cavs finished with the best record in the Eastern Conference for a second straight year, but were eliminated in the second round of the playoffs by the Celtics; thus adding to the speculation that LeBron James had played his final game in a Cavalier jersey.
LeBron was not the problem as he won his second-straight MVP and averaged a ridiculous 29.7 points, 8.6 assists and 7.3 rebounds per game. The lack of a supporting cast was once again a major issue for Cleveland. General manager Danny Ferry made the move that he was hoping would catapult the franchise to the NBA Championship when he acquired Antawn Jamison from Washington. But neither Shaq nor Jamison was enough to get the king a ring.
As a result, head coach Mike Brown was fired while Ferry resigned. Now the franchise risks losing its superstar and hometown hero, and as result, the possibility of becoming one of the worst teams in the East.
2010-11 Projected Depth Chart:
C: Anderson Varejao/Ryan Hollins
PF: Antawn Jamison/J.J. Hickson/Leon Powe/#Jawad Williams
SF: Jamrio Moon/Joey GrahamChristian Eyenga
SG: Anthony Parker/Danny Green
PG: Mo Williams/Ramon Sessions/Daniel Gibson
NBA Free Agents:
#F Jawad Williams (RFA)
C Shaquille O'Neal (UFA)
2010-11 Team Salary: Approximately $51.3 million
2010-11 League Salary Cap: $58 million
Cavs sign SF Joey Graham to 2-year, $2.1 million deal
Cavs acquire PG Ramon Sessions, C Ryan Hollins, and 2nd round pick from Timberwolves for G Delonte West and PG Sebastian Telfair
Cavs sign G/F Christian Eyenga
NBA Offseason Needs:
1. Sell Your Soul to LeBron- Give LeBron whatever he wants. If he wants Lady Gaga to be the head coach, hire her. If he wants to bring in Manute Bol as the starting center, sign him. If he wants the team to be called the Cleveland LeBron's, draw up a new logo. If LeBron leaves Cleveland, there will be at least a decades worth of hurt through the franchise and its fan base like how the Bulls have been haunted since the Michael Jordan left.
2. Prepare for the Worst- If LeBron leaves, the Cavs go from the best team in the Eastern Conference to one of the worst. They would only have about $6 million to spend in free agency meaning they will be unable to land a big-time player to replace LeBron. Cleveland management needs to have a Plan B so that if LeBron signs elsewhere in the offseason, they can somehow lessen the transition period. Either that, or completely blow up the roster and start building from scratch.
3. Size- With the artists former known as Shaq and Big Z free agents and both 1/90th of the players they used to be, Cleveland will need to find a big body. Varejao is really a power forward who cannot bring the physicality at the center spot. Jamison and Hickson are both more finesse players than bangers down low. However, the Cavs don't have much flexibility in free agency and no draft picks, so they will somehow have to address this need through trade.
Out of sheer boredom and the upcoming NBA draft has gotten me itching to make a new mock draft. Of course the NFL draft is a whole lot less predictable than the NBA draft, but also provides more success stories than the NBA draft. Again, I used schedules to determine each team's records and if you get upset with me just remember it's June and a whole lot can change by next April.