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NBA Daily: 2022-2023 Season Preview #15 – Cleveland Cavaliers


PhilBoxing.com




In this limited 30-part series, we shall be discussing each team’s latest developments, current roster, and future prospects in the upcoming 2022-2023 NBA season. For every team, we will examine bit-by-bit the important aspects that may shape its progress and provide a rough projection of how it will fare vis-à-vis its previous year’s performance and versus the rest of the league.

CLEVELAND CAVALIERS

2021-2022 Season Win-Loss Record:

44-38

Depth Chart:

PG – Darius Garland, Raul Neto, Ricky Rubio
SG – Donovan Mitchell, Caris Levert, Dylan Windler
SF – Isaac Okoro, Cedi Osman, Lamar Stevens
PF – Evan Mobley, Kevin Love, Dean Wade, Mamadi Diakite
CE – Jarrett Allen, Robin Lopez, Isaiah Mobley

Injury Updates:

Ricky Rubio, out with a knee injury, signified that he’s hopeful to be back sometime this December.

Head Coach:

J.B. Bickerstaff

Headliners:

The Cleveland Cavaliers arguably had the biggest splash during the free-agency period when they acquired perennial All Star guard Donovan Mitchell via a blockbuster trade. Paired with another All Star guard in Darius Garland, Cleveland poses a very potent backcourt duo that could rival the best in the league.

Caris Levert is a highly underrated player who can play multiple positions. He should fit perfectly with the sixth man’s role. Isaac Okoro should start at small forward and play the role as the primary defender of the opposing team’s best perimeter player.

Their frontcourt isn’t shabby, either. All Star center Jarrett Allen remains the team’s defensive anchor, while Evan Mobley continues to improve into a multi-faceted modern big man. Kevin Love and Robin Lopez are able veterans, who can contribute in limited minutes on both ends.

People may start considering Cleveland as Donovan Mitchell’s team, but make no mistake about it… this is still Darius Garland’s team. When former Cav’s primary guard Collin Sexton went down with an injury after just 11 games into last season, it opened up a huge opportunity for Garland to prove his worth.

Garland went on to average 21.7 points, 3.3 rebounds, 8.6 assists, and 1.3 steals throughout the season, shooting 46.2% from the field and 38.3% from deep. The ball should remain in his hands and the arrival of Mitchell would only improve his accuracy and efficiency.

Raul Neto may be the team’s primary back-up point guard, but if and when Ricky Rubio returns, the backcourt rotation instantly improves its depth, assuming he’s not traded. This provides head coach J.B. Bickerstaff with a lot of roster options, versatility, and flexibility.

Mitchell adds another dimension to this already formidable lineup and should make the Cleveland Cavaliers one of the top contenders in the very deep Eastern Conference.


Comments are highly appreciated. You may send them to reylanloberternos@yahoo.com.ph and you may follow me @reylan_l on twitter.


Click here to view a list of other articles written by Reylan Loberternos.


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