22-50 • 13th in EASTERN CONFERENCE
|G||24||N/A||6' 5"||185 lbs||TRUMAN STATE|
|F||26||$8,750,000||6' 7"||230 lbs||N/A|
|G||22||$4,991,880||6' 1"||190 lbs||ALABAMA|
|G||27||$2,000,000||6' 5"||210 lbs||HOUSTON|
|G||21||$6,720,720||6' 1"||192 lbs||VANDERBILT|
|F-C||24||$1,517,981||6' 9"||228 lbs||KANSAS STATE|
|G-F||24||$2,137,440||6' 6"||196 lbs||BELMONT|
|F-G||20||$6,400,920||6' 5"||225 lbs||AUBURN|
|C||23||$3,909,902||6' 11"||243 lbs||TEXAS|
|G||25||N/A||6' 2"||185 lbs||MEMPHIS|
|F-C||32||$31,300,000||6' 8"||251 lbs||UCLA|
|F||24||N/A||6' 6"||230 lbs||PENN STATE|
|F-C||28||$11,709,091||6' 7"||245 lbs||WYOMING|
|G||30||$2,174,318||6' 3"||200 lbs||SAINT MARY'S (CA)|
|F-C||23||$2,075,880||6' 9"||250 lbs||FLORIDA STATE|
|G||30||$17,000,000||6' 3"||190 lbs||N/A|
The Cleveland Cavaliers didn't do too much in the offseason. As a matter of fact, their biggest addition came in the form of fifth overall pick Isaac Okoro. The Cavs also brought on JaVale McGee -- fresh off a championship with the Los Angeles Lakers -- to add some much needed depth to their front court.
Cleveland, however, lost a key cog to their squad in Tristan Thompson, who decided to sign with the Boston Celtics as a free agent. Nonetheless, Andre Drummond (exercised $28.8 million player option) and Kevin Love -- both of whom were rumored to be on the trading block -- will remain with the Cavs for at least another year.
Cleveland currently has a lot invested in their young and very promising core. Collin Sexton, Darius Garland, and Kevin Porter Jr. enter the new season with renewed hopes both individually and for the Cavs as a unit as well. Guys like Larry Nance Jr. and Cedi Osman will likewise play key roles for the squad in 2020-21.
The Cavs enter the new season with a starting five of Sexton and Garland as their two guards, Okoro at the three spot, and the duo of Love and Drummond representing a fearsome frontcourt. Nance, Osman, McGee, and Damyean Dotson -- another offseason free agent signing -- are expected to have a lot of run with the second unit.
One important thing to note is that Drummond is currently in the final year of his current deal.
The Cavaliers had another awful 2019-20 campaign. They finished with a 19-46 record, which was dead last in the Eastern Conference. They ended up with the second-worst record in the entire league, holding a slight advantage over the 15-50 Golden State Warriors. As such, Cleveland's numbers as a team are not pretty -- both on the offensive and the defensive end.
The Cavs averaged 106.9 points scored per contest, which ranks 26th in the league. Collin Sexton led the way in this category, averaging 20.8 points per game
As a team, they shot 45.8 percent overall (20th), while also connecting on 11.2 triples per contest on a 35.1-percent clip (20th). Kevin Love proved to be their top sharp-shooter from distance last season, knocking down 2.6 triples per game on an efficient 37.4 percent shooting.
Getting to the line is one of the biggest weaknesses of this team last season, as they took just 19.9 attempts per ballgame. Only the Indiana Pacers (15.0) took fewer attempts from the stripe. The fact that they shot just 75.8 percent from the free-throw line (20th) didn't help their case either.
Andre Drummond had the most free-throw attempts for the Cavs last season with 4.9 trips to the line a night (in just eight games), and the fact that he averaged just 51.3 from the stripe pulled down the team's average.
The Cavs turned the ball over 16.5 times per game, which was the most among all 30 NBA teams. Drummond was the main culprit here with 3.6 turnovers per contest.
Cleveland finished the campaign with a 106.9 offensive rating, which ranks just 26th in the league.
It wasn't all bad news; Cleveland finished fourth in the league in offensive rebounding with 10.8 per game. Still, clearly the Cavs have more than a few areas in need of improvement on the offensive end. The fact that both Sexton and Garland are expected to make vast improvements next season should certainly help this cause.
The Cavs did not do much better on the defensive end compared to offense.
In terms of rebounding, Cleveland wasn't all that bad, securing an average of 44.2 boards per contest, which ranks 19th in the league. While 33.4 of those came on the defensive end (22nd), the Cavs excelled in the offensive rebounding category with 10.8 boards per contest (4th). The fact that they have two of the best rebounders in the league in Love and Drummond explains why this is the case. This is something that the team can build on next season, assuming that both players will still be in Cleveland next term. Based on what we've been hearing in the rumor mill, that's anything but a certainty at this point.
The Cavs averaged 6.9 steals per game (25th), but they only swatted away 3.2 blocks per contest, which ranked dead last in the league.
Cleveland allowed their opponents to score an average of 114.8 points against them per game (22nd). Their net +/- rating is at +7.9 (28th). In terms of field-goal percentage, the Cavs allowed their opponents to go 49.1 percent from the field (30th), and 37.5 percent from distance (26th).
One silver lining here is that the Cavs allowed just 19.2 free-throws per game to their opponents, which ranks second-best in the entire NBA.
Cleveland forced their opponents to 13.0 turnovers per game, which is just 26th in the league. This is a clear area for improvement to the squad for next season.
All things considered, the Cavs netted a 114.8 defensive rating, which again, ranked 30th in the NBA. This team has a couple of defensive stalwarts in Love and Drummond, and if this is the direction the team wants to take next season, then they certainly have the foundations in place. There's a lot required, though.
J.B. Bickerstaff took over the reins as head coach in February 2020, following the departure of John Beilein. Formerly an assistant to Beilein, Bickerstaff was promoted to the head coaching post.
Bickerstaff started his coaching career in the NBA as an assistant coach with the Charlotte Bobcats back in 2004. He also had stints as an assistant with the Minnesota Timberwolves and the Houston Rockets. It was in Houston that Bickerstaff first got the role of head coach, which he served for one season. He made the move to the Memphis Grizzlies, where he served as the team's head coach between 2017 and 2019, before making the move to Cleveland in the summer of 2019.
Bickerstaff has gone 5-6 since taking over in Cleveland. Between the Rockets and the Grizzlies, he holds an 85-131 (.394) win-loss record.
Antonio Lang is Bickerstaff's most tenured assistant coach, having spent five years with the Utah Jazz prior to making his move to Cleveland last summer. Dan Geroit has been with the Cavs for two seasons, while former California head coach Lindsay Gottlieb is a first-year assistant.
Cleveland most recently signed Thon Maker to a training camp (Exhibit 10) contract, as the team looks to add even more depth to their front court. The 7-foot big man, who spent last season with the Detroit Pistons, will look to impress in camp in order to secure a spot on the Cavs' final roster.
Aside from Maker, the Cavs also signed 6-foot-5 shooting guard Damyean Dotson on a two-year deal worth $4 million. Last season with the New York Knicks, the 26-year-old averaged 6.7 points, 1.9 rebounds, and 1.2 assists in 17.4 minutes off the bench.
The Cavs weren't very active in free agency, with their biggest offseason move thus far coming in the form of Andre Drummond exercising the player option of his current deal for the 2020-21 season.
Cleveland also signed free agent point guard Matthew Dellavedova to a one-year extension worth $2.2 million. Damyean Dotson, who plied his trade with the New York Knicks last season, was also brought in on a two-year, $4 million deal. Finally, big man Thon Maker signed an Exhibit 10 contract for training camp, but has yet to be guaranteed a spot on the roster.
The Cavs aren't exactly a prime destination for free agents, but they were linked to names such as Derrick Jones Jr., Josh Jackson, Christian Wood, Jabari Parker, and even Davis Bertans.
The Cavs further added to their already formidable front court by trading for three-time NBA champ JaVale McGee from the Los Angeles Lakers. In exchange, Cleveland sent Jordan Bell and Alfonzo McKinnie to the defending champs. The Lakers also sent over a 2026 second-round pick to the Cavs as part of the deal.
Last season with the Lakers, McGee served as the squad's starting center, averaging 6.6 points, 5.7 rebounds, and 1.4 blocks in 16.6 minutes per contest. The 32-year-old is set to earn $4.2 million next season in what will be the final year of his current contract.
There have been a few memorable lineups in the history of this franchise, but there's no denying that the greatest of them all is the one that went all the way to win the chip in 2016.
LeBron James was at the helm of that squad, backed up by his fellow Big 3 companions in Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love. Tristan Thompson and J.R. Smith rounded out the starting five, while other key players off the bench included Matthew Dellavedova, Iman Shumpert, Timofey Mozgov, Richard Jefferson, and Mo Williams.
Cleveland's salary cap situation for the 2020-21 season basically revolved around Andre Drummond and his decision to opt into the player option of his current deal for the coming campaign. This comes out to the tune of $28.8 million, which, given the uncertainty brought about the pandemic, was pretty much a no-brainer for Drummond.
Drummond's decision to stay on board significantly affected the Cavs' salary cap flexibility, and it also had a lot to do with Cleveland letting Tristan Thompson walk away and sign with the Boston Celtics for $19 million for two years.
With the Cavs' limited cap room, they will need to focus on the development of their young and promising players. That's actually not a terrible thing with guys like Collin Sexton, Darius Garland, Kevin Porter Jr., and now Isaac Okoro all in the mix.
The Cavs experimented with a number of rotations throughout the season, with injuries also playing a significant role. Nonetheless, if we were to pick the team's Sixth Man, it would have to be Larry Nance Jr.
The 6-foot-7 forward/center did have 10 starts during the season, but he primarily served as one of the key players of the team's second unit. Nance usually comes behind Love, but is also well equipped to play the five spot for smaller lineups.
Last season, Nance averaged 10.1 points, 7.3 rebounds, 2.2 assists, and 1.0 steals in 26.3 minutes per game.
During the 2019-20 campaign, the Cavs fielded a starting five of Darius Garland (PG), Collin Sexton (SG), Cedi Osman (SF), Kevin Love (PF), and Andre Drummond (C).
Drummond arrived in Cleveland during the February 2019 trade deadline, taking as the starting five man. Prior to his arrival, it was Tristan Thompson who started at the center position for the Cavs.
Heading into the 2020-21 season, the Cavaliers will likely field a similar starting lineup of Garland, Sexton, rookie Isaac Okoro, Love, and Drummond.