What?! Braxton's going to Pitt?! Heard it here first, you guys!
Apparently we need to keep proving that Penn State fans are the worst kind of idiots. First of all, Braxton went to Meyer first about a position change and Meyer has seemed hesitant to the idea because he doesn't want to rule out having his biggest playmaker have the ball in his hands every play. Second, how would this be ANY more of an injury risk than having the ball in your hands on every play?! He used to get 20+ carries per game and carry this offense...and one of the the biggest risks to serious injury is standing in the pocket and taking big hits. That's how he injured his shoulder in the first place. If anything, this will take the burden and wear and tear off of him. Third, let's not compare this guy to Tim Tebow. He's 6'2" 225lbs and is faster than any player on PSU's goddamn POS roster, with Barry Sanders agility and acceleration. Fourth, He also has significant arm talent. He may not have NFL read ability (he was getting better all the time and got robbed of showing it off his senior year) but he's got an absolute cannon for an arm. He can throw with NFL level velocity.
Yeah, that's 46 yards on a frozen rope, nailing his receiver between the numbers. No arm talent my nutsack.
I guess that's a testament to Urban as being a better coach than Saban under that logic...Urban is able to actually motivate his NFL-bound talent and Nick couldn't. Or Nick could not be a dumbass and realize that the draft grades in December aren't the final evaluation of a prospect. The College Football Playoff should be one of the best evaluations for his players to participate in and raise their stock in.
Yeah, that's what I kept saying all along, there's no way they're running the same defense with Braxton Miller, one of the most elusive and explosive athletes in the nation back there. That's suicide by big play after big play. The only thing I don't think the analysis takes into account is that Ohio State did make adjustments after the VT game to be able to deal with a Bear front. It's critical of Bama and MSU in a "what were they thinking" by not running what we ran kind of way. After the VT game, several teams saw this as the blueprint to beat OSU. OSU punished several teams that tried to use VT's blueprint, in part because they didn't have as much defensive talent as VT, but a major part of the reason was because OSU was actually ready for it and able to handle it. Teams would start in the Bear front or throw it in for a series to change it up, they'd get torched and they'd immediately abandon it after a series or two. That's probably why Bama and MSU opted to not gamble like that.
Ohio State had limited time to prepare a gameplan for VT, so when they threw something at us that we weren't prepared for, we didn't have a contingency with 4 of 5 new o-line starters and a freshman QB who just took the reins not more than two weeks earlier. Contributing to that, they were playing a solid Navy team in week 1 who runs a triple option wishbone that you have to very carefully prepare for. Ohio State had to spend time gameplanning defensively for a a very unique offense, while VT was able to spend more their time focusing on gameplanning for OSU. I hope we never ever play another triple option wishbone team the week before a big game again.
oops, accidently posted instead of replying...see below...
Definitely remember that one. I remember being so happy when I saw that. I fully expected everyone on the team to give him a pass and want to go hang out with him and talk to him. It actually still makes me smile watching it, haha. I know i'm in the minority of Cavs fans...but I don't really care much for LeBron. And that's not to say I don't acknowledge his greatness, I just think he's a d-bag. Sucks, cause they're good again, but it doesn't feel like it's nearly as pure and fun as in 08-09 and 09-10.
Yeah, I only recently figured that out. I don't know why I kept reading that over and over again as $4.3/year...even though it wasn't making any sense to me how that would be possible with the approximately $3.5 MLE. Was even commenting with a few people up above about it before I finally realized that. So, yeah...Mo definitely gave us a discount. Although, the teams that were pursuing him seemed to be contenders looking for a backup PG just like us. He probably would've been playing for a discount anywhere he went unless he re-signed with Charlotte.
Right, I remember that game well. Score wound up being closer than it actually was...and I think we won by 11? something like 110-99. The people making terrible statements during and after the Finals about how we should "let Love walk cause we obviously don't need him anyway" were the ones that only started watching in the playoffs. They forget how much of a juggernaut this team was after the January trades and when LeBron came back from vacation. From that point on we went 14-1 against the almighty West, and most of all of their wins in that stretch held the opponent under 100. The one loss came at Houston, an OT loss by just two and Kyrie didn't even play.
I think they'll bring back JR...which, I hope they do as well. We'll get Andy back even if it's in a diminished role. I still think he has value to this team...he's such a smart player. Mo is a great pickup, especially given the form he was playing with during the 2nd half of the season last year. He gives good flexibility as a combo guard and we can finally have someone who can create offensively on the 2nd unit. He'll also be able to play the 2 and also be able to let Kyrie play off the ball at times. We'll see if there's anything in the cards that they can do with the BHC. I'm hopeful that they'll be able to land a good combo 3/4 or 2/3 player that can either provide great defense in backing up LeBron and/or is a good spot up shooter. An upgrade to the Shawn Marion/James Jones combo from last season, basically.
Point is, the people freaking out when the Cavs lost in the Finals clearly didn't watch this team much at all in the regular season...they were unreal when they were all together. Next season is going to be even more unreal. Can't wait for those wonderful months where college football, college basketball, the NFL, the EPL and the NBA all overlap...my fiance on the other hand...
As a backup point guard for $4M/year? Especially in a FA market where players are getting 2x and 3x what they're actually worth. How is this a horrible signing? Guy averaged 18 ppg and 7.6 apg when he actually got to play as the starter for half the season. Only $4M in a world where Goran Dragic can average 16 ppg and 4.5 apg and sign a contract as an FA that's going to pay him $18M/year.
EDIT: To my understanding, it's actually only $2.15M/year...which only furthers the point...in what bizarro world is this a bad signing?
Actually, I think it's not $4.3M per year, but rather $2.15M per year. That'd leave them with the roughly $1.3M or so left that they can give someone per year on a contract of up to 3 years. I guess I was just misreading it every time I saw it. Wow, we're getting him at an even bigger bargain than I thought.
Right but the MLE was $3.5M and we only used roughly half of it and Mo signed for $4.3M per year...How is his contract able to exceed the MLE? Haven't been able to find an explanation anywhere.
That kind of confused me as well, not sure how that worked out. I haven't been able to find any sort of explanation or anyone even asking about it anywhere on the internet. Maybe someone can stop by and confirm. The MLE was indeed in the range of $3.5M for the Cavs this year, though.
JJ and Perk I don't think have been re-signed, but we do hold some form of their Bird Rights (I think it's Non-Bird for both of them...I think), so we are able to re-sign them since they played for us last year for up to 120% of what they made last year or 120% of the vets minimum, whichever amount is greater...regardless of whether we're over the cap. That's why we can still re-sign JR to a substantial contract because we have his Full Bird Rights, because they transfer to the new team when a player is traded. We can re-sign a player whose Full Bird Rights we hold all the way up to a max contract, regardless of what they made the year before. Also why we were able to give Shump $10M/year. I imagine they'll look to bring JR back at around $8M or so, since the FA market has been overpaying everywhere this year and $6M was what he opted out of for next year.
Can't hold onto it, unfortunately. The value of the contract is that it can be waived by August 1st and he'll completely come off the books as far as cap hit goes and you won't have to pay him a dime of that money.
To my understanding though, what they could do is trade him to a team that's under the cap for next to nothing in return and create a large $10M-ish (depending on what they get back) trade exception that they could hold onto until the deadline when other teams go into full tank mode and will just give away pieces for cap space. But the thing is, the closer we get to the salary cap spike of the next couple seasons, the less and less value the BHC/a $10M trade exception holds. So even if we could hold off until the trade deadline or next offseason, the BHC/trade exception won't ever have as much value as it does right now going forward.
Wish I could upvote you more than once. Definitely a basketball junkie. NBA is far and away my favorite pro sports league. Appreciate the update and the stats! Back during the playoffs I thought I read somewhere a list of top lineups and I thought I recalled seeing the Love-Thompson combo as the best, but seeing as how i can't seem to dig up whatever it was that I had stumbled across previously, I'll go ahead and assume I mis-remembered.
Doesn't surprise me with the Love-Timo pairing being the best defensively. Love is comfortable roaming with 4s and also strong enough to stand them up in the post...and when Timo is out there and Love gets stuck in a pick-n-roll, he's got a 7'1" shot blocker/challenger waiting to help. Love also isn't going to take as many chances at shot blocks/shot challenges as TT and Timo would, choosing more so to not leave his feet and stay in position. When Timo and TT are both going after shot blocks they take themselves out of position for defensive rebounds and can accrue more fouls. While TT is a very good rebounder, he's a great offensive rebounder and Kevin Love is a great defensive rebounder. The opponents will face the shot altering presence of Timo with Love always in great position to clean up the rebound and not allow a 2nd opportunity for the other team.
I absolutely can't wait to watch the frontcourt rotation next year with TT improving so much every year, Love with a year under his belt to get more comfortable and feel a more defined role and with Andy coming back to provide some spot minutes here and there. Team's gonna be nasty.
Mo Williams is the only player taking a pay cut...and it's not super significant, he's still getting $4.3M per year...would probably be worth $6M or so to someone otherwise. They just handed out max contracts to Kyrie and Love. They're going to sign TT to close to the max, which is way overpaying for him. LeBron is going to sign the max. They just gave $10M/yr for Shumpert. The Cavs are going to have the highest salary and luxury tax fines in the history of the League because no one is going to take a paycut. David West just turned down $12M to go sign with San Antonio for $1.5M. Tim Duncan, the franchise's all time greatest player, and still one of the better centers in the League is re-signing for $6M this year. Six Million! Most players in his position and stature would be making sixteen million at a minimum.
But having these options gives the ability to put Love at center, go 5 wide and play small ball like GSW did. Or it gives us the flexibility to line up Thompson and Mozgov together and pummel people on the glass. The Cavs' most effective lineup statistically last season was Love at the 4 and TT at the 5. LeBron starts at the 3, Love at the 4 and probably (since TT is gonna get paid all this money but it's a toss up between him an Timo...matchups could dictate it) Tristan at the 5. Love spreads the floor with his shooting, pick and pop game and Thompson is a monster on the glass inside. They play 2 totally different games and coexist well on the floor together. Verajao won't play more than 10-15 mins/game next season but he can play either center or PF, he's played just sort of an all over the place non-defined position his whole career. Don't look at it as PF and C...the NBA isn't that simple anymore. Players have to and can play multiple positions and the line between a PF and C is blurred anyway. Just think of it as We've got 4 post players for two post positions. That's called a 2 deep. That is not abnormal...especially when it's mostly going to be a 3 man rotation between those two spots with Andy playing spot duty.
I do wish LeBron would play out of the post more, but he's not going to. He doesn't want to. It frustrates the crap out of me as well, but if he's not going to, we might as well employ some people who will. He'd be the best PF in the history of the game, but he's also already the best playmaking SF of all time, playing the majority of his career as a perimeter oriented player. You can't even nail down a position for him because he at times plays wing and at a lot of times plays point forward and runs the offense.
And it's not like the guys surrounding the core are superstar players as well. They're just nice complimentary players. Every good team has that. Look at some of the teams in the West and see why the West is so dominant. The greatest player of all time had people like Dennis Rodman joining the team, Steve Kerr joining the team, Ron Harper joining the team whose core was Jordan/Pippen/Kukoc. That team went 11 deep with guys who averaged over 10 minutes per game on the 72-10 95-96 team, widely regarded as the greatest of all time. Spurs are down in San Antonio with guys taking $10M paycuts to join their team in contributing roles. We're at least paying for all these guys to come in and contribute.
Well, you're right about one thing. They can't go up to 15 deep, because you can only dress 13 players. By my estimation, we currently go about 8 deep with what they have signed (and on the assumption LeBron and Tristan re-sign, which they will) and you also have to have contingencies for things like the annual Anderson Verajao Christmas time injury. LeBron plays on the perimeter, he doesn't play the same position as Love, Thompson or Verajao. Really, all three of those guys can and will get time at both 4 and 5 next year. It's going to be a rotation with them and Mozgov and all 4 of those bigs bring something different to the table. Allows us ultimate flexibility, just like Golden State enjoyed last season. That's 4 players for 2 post positions, Verajao probably won't play a lot, so mostly 3 players rotating 2 post positions. That's pretty damn normal. It's not like the just added a big 4 with Mo. Shumpert is nothing more than a role player and a defensive specialist and he doesn't currently have a backup. We don't currently have a decent backup at the 3...I'm not sure what you're getting at. By the time we're finished with free agency, hopefully we'll be 2 deep at every position...and they'll probably wind up playing a 9 man rotation most of the time. That's kind of normal and ideal.
I nosed around the Key Play last year leading up to the VT game and was impressed with their analysis. Enough that I was willing to go back and check it out again.
Well, Mo's always had his defensive limitations and is a pretty small dude, even by PG standards. In a night where we need offense, Delly shouldn't need to leave the bench. But having both at least gives that flexibility of a changeup if someone's just torching Mo when he's in (although, the other solution to that is put Shump on him...who's actually a better all around defender than Delly because he's such a superior athlete).
Mo looked fantastic last season, which is part of the reason I'm excited about the signing. He sort of got relegated into obscurity playing backup minutes, but when Minnesota had a string of injuries he became their starting PG. He went on to score 52(!) points in a game against Indiana (along with 7 assists) in January. Minnesota really had him on the trade block all season, and Charlotte jumped at the chance to get him. He was really really good as Charlotte's starting PG. Averaged over 17 PPG the rest of the season for Charlotte. He can still play. He'll get backup minutes for the Cavs and I can see a couple of scenarios of him and Ky on the floor at the same time for brief stretches, both playing combo guard/2-guard and/or PG while Ky moves to the 2.
Someone get down to the K-Mart fast! Tell Delonte to take off that nametag and get back over here...we're getting the band back together!
Well the key is they can't be free agents...unless one of them wanted to come sign for the rest of our MLE, which is 1.-something mil. We're still in talks with several teams to trade the BHC for one more piece. I anticipate they'll re-sign JR, which they're allowed to do since he's an FA coming from the Cavs. Sounds like they're looking for one more versatile wing to snag with the BHC...I just don't know what's really made available to them for BHC, but it'd have to be someone in the $8-12ish million range who was not a FA at all this year. We're over the tax apron so we can't do a sign and trade, so that's why any and all FAs are out of the question, even those who've signed somewhere already this month. If they do trade BHC for someone in that range and re-sign JR...their expenditures are going to be astronomical.
That's what I'm saying is the last piece of the puzzle. They need another wing. My preference would be a guy like James Johnson (not saying he's available, or anything, but just in that mold) who can contribute a lot on defense and just be up and down all over the floor, even slide to the 4 when we try and go small and athletic. Someone who will be most effective off the ball. My other preference would be someone that's a spot up shooter and can defend. We've got 3 PGs and a point forward, we don't need much more shot creation and ball handling. We need an upgrade to James Jones.
What's scary is that lesser players' value in this market has been set at about double $4-6M/year. He was reportedly looking for $8M/yr when he opted out. Hopefully the fact that he's a nutjob and has to be in the right situation will deter teams from pursuing him. He also may be left out in the cold in the FA market right now, as the music has stopped and he's standing there without a chair. Teams willing to spend this offseason have already done so. His best option will be back in Cleveland.