The Cleveland Cavaliers are in the mix of their worse stretch, in a long time. In their last 10 games, they are 4-6. Losing to teams like the Sacramento Kings (at home), New Orleans Pelicans, and Monday night to the Dallas Mavericks is not a good look for a team considered one of the best in the NBA.
Lebron James says the Cavs need a “f*cking playmaker.” pic.twitter.com/2xhSKcEJlR
— Complex (@Complex) January 24, 2017
At first glance it makes sense. LeBron James, Kevin Love, and Kyrie Irving are the Cavs big three. They do the majority of scoring, rebounding, and assisting. Love doesn’t set up anyone, most of his shots come from pick and pops and coming off screens. Therefore, it leaves only James and Irving to set up everyone else on the team.
But there is no one to set up players when neither of them are on the court. That is why James is pressuring management to get a playmaker.
However, the Cavs might need more than just a playmaker. They need to trade for another big man. Kevin Love suffered back spasms on Sunday’s game against the Oklahoma City Thunder. He missed the Mavs game and will miss their next game against the Minnesota Timberwolves.
The Cavs only have three big men on their roster, Love, Tristan Thompson, and Channing Frye. Now since Love is out and he’s timetable is unknown at the moment, this could cause a problem.
Thompson is a tough and aggressive power forward/center that averages 9.7 rebounds a game. However, he is undersized, standing at 6’9. Frye is a 7-footer that can shoot the three and spread the offense. However, he only averages 3 rebounds a game. Love averages 11 rebounds a game.
Although Frye and Love are both able to stretch the offense, neither of them provide a defensive edge in the paint. Thompson does a bit but he is undersized. The Cavs need to acquire a 7-footer that is solely focused on defense like Nerlens Noel, Serge Ibaka or Tyson Chandler to name a few.
The Golden State Warriors added Kevin Durant during the summer. The likelihood for the Cavs to make a midseason trade for a player of that caliber is unlikely. Therefore, they need to make it up through the little things, like a backup playmaker and a backup defensive big men.