After dealing with the likes of Drew Gooden and J.J. Hickson, Cavaliers power forward Tristan Thompson appears to be the type of player fans have been begging for for years. While Gooden and Hickson may have had talent, they didn't have the desire to play their hardest every minute they were on the court. Tristan Thompson clearly has that desire, and it was on full display Monday night.
Thompson is a powerful and athletic big man who finishes with extreme force when he gets the ball under the hoop. Equally as impressive as his big dunks, was his physicality in the rebounding game.
Next time the Cavaliers play, focus on Thompson when shots go up. He seems to have a real enjoyment for getting physical and boxing out, trying to get the best position for rebounds.
Once he polishes his craft a little bit, the Cavaliers will have quite a tandem with Thompson and Anderson Varejao hitting the boards.
The big positive scouts talked about with Thompson coming out of college at the University of Texas was his ever-running motor. Imagining that is tough, but watching him play Monday night made it very clear to understand what those scouts were saying.
Tristan still has work to do. He struggled getting into good defensive position a few times, and he allowed a few open shots, but there's no reason to think Byron Scott and his coaching staff won't be able to help Thompson with that.
His other weakness was supposed to be his free-throw shooting, but Thompson hit 6-of-8 free-throw attempts in his debut, showing that he spent some time in the gym improving from the line, where he will continue to find himself multiple times per game.
Fans questioned the Cavaliers for selecting Thompson with the fourth overall pick in the 2011 NBA draft. On Monday, Thompson began to answer those questions with a big statement!