Cleat Geeks

Underwhelming, Yet Still Good Enough

The Cleveland Cavaliers haven’t been having the season they had initially hoped for. With an offseason that included the signings of power forward Kevin Love, and more notably, the return of the dominant LeBron James, the city of Cleveland had hope again. What was once a place that seemed it was a long time away from an NBA Championship, now had a reason to be believe that they were a contender.

Oh what a difference a few months makes.

Cleveland is currently ranked 6th in the Eastern Conference, and 3rd in the Central Division with a very underwhelming 21-20 record. With a season that has already featured injuries to key players, rumored conflict among head coach David Blatt and the team, and so forth, the Cavs haven’t been having the season they, nor their fans, had expected.

Nonetheless, here they are with a 21-20 record, and if the season were to end today, they would be getting ready for a first-round playoff match-up against a talented, yet quite young, Toronto Raptors team. While Toronto is the better team, wouldn’t you still be tempted to pick the Cavaliers to advance?

As of right now, according to stats.nba.com, the Cavs rank 16th in points per game,  23rd in rebounds per game, and 19th in opponent points per game. Those numbers don’t really scream out “title contender,” yet they’d still be good enough to get into the playoffs. You can attribute that to a weak Eastern Conference. Outside of the the top four teams, the 5th – 8th seed in the East would be on the outside looking in if they were in the Western Conference. Here’s a number for you, the current 8th seeded Brooklyn Nets (17-24) of the Eastern Conference would only be a half game better than the 12th seeded Sacramento Kings in the West. That shows you the disparity between the two conferences this season.

However, none of that matters because the Cleveland Cavaliers aren’t in the Western Conference, and that’s perfectly fine.  At the end of the day, every team still has to go through a couple of opponents to reach their ultimate goal of winning a championship. While some journeys are more difficult than others, it all culminates with the best of the East facing off against the best of the West. And for Cleveland, the fact that they are where they are shouldn’t disappoint them, it should motivate them.

 

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