Friday, August 8, 2014

An EXCITING idea for the Cleveland Cavilers!

A bunch of reporters said that the Cavs and Timberwolves have a plan in place to trade Kevin Love for Anthony Bennett and Andrew Wiggins once Wiggins to eligible to be traded. This means that the Cavs will probably have a wheat thresher offense next year. Lebron and Love and Kyrie are all hyper capable three point shooters and Lebron kills with space, Love is a tremendous offensive rebounder and outlet passer, Kyrie blessed with a multi-facted pick and roll partner. It may take time to melt together, but it will and it will be a nightmare to defend.

But Cleveland is going to lack talent on the defensive end. Lebron is usually a terror over there, but Kyrie has been a disaster, and Love can probably learn to blow up pick and rolls up top but his arms aren't long enough to protect the rim. A rim protector would help. Here is a solution:

Varejao is probably going to be the stopgap center for the Cavs this year. He is good at rebounding and passing and defending pick and rolls, but he isn't a rim protector. Larry Sanders is. Even when he was wallowing through a shitty year on the shitty Bucks, his plus/minus numbers were obscene: ESPN's DRPM metric, rated him a +6.29 on the defensive end, the second best defensive player in the league by the measurement. The year before, Sander's extraordinary rim defense was at the center of Kirk Goldsberry's paper on rim protection

Sanders has had a lot of trouble in the last year. He broke his hand in a bar fight and got a citation for leaving his dogs out in the cold. These are bad and concerning. After that, he got tagged by the league for testing positive for marijuana. If you are an owner, you should not care about this in particular, because pot being legal is dumb and everyone knows it. Sanders even came out after he got suspended and flat out said that marijuana helps him cope with the stress of being an NBA player. Better smoking pot in your own house than breaking your hand at a bar. Positive marijuana tests are the new market inefficiency. 

Also, his offense has been very bad. Offensive RPM rated him a -4.47. His hands haven't been terrific on catch and dunks and he isn't a post up player, but he's not out there trying or anything. But, Christ: you're trotting out Irvin, Lebron James and Kevin Love, you can take a little tag on this end for someone that could plug up that many holes in your defense. His coach also hated him and and him ride pine. Was this justified? Who knows!? NBA office politics are insane!

Would Milwaukee do this? Yeah, probably. Sanders has a lengthy contract and they're in a place of restarting with Parker and Giannis. Varejao would give them good production then expire at the end of the year and clean out their cap to sign some big man in the summer. Would Cleveland? Nahh. Sanders is a perceived risk with a pretty long contract. They've already signed NBA Champion Brendon Haywood to play some center minutes and will probably scoop someone else up: Emeka is a good risky option, Aaron Grey a not as good but less risky one. But who knows? Maybe someone over there's a gambler.

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