The Cleveland Cavaliers are determined to win.
Following a solid 2013 NBA draft night, the Cavaliers have shown no signs of slowing down in their pursuit to build a franchise capable of shaking up the Eastern Conference.
Who would have thought that in the initial stages of the 2013 free-agency period that the Cavs would go out and acquire Earl Clark, Jarrett Jack and one of the best centers in the game in Andrew Bynum?
Certainly, Cleveland's acquisitions thus far in free-agency point to immediate success.
Earl Clark provides versatility for the Cavs.
Clark’s multifaceted game will allow head coach Mike Brown to feature the 6’10” forward in an abundance of situations.
Having finally found his place in the league last season, Clark averaged 7.3 points and 5.5 rebounds per game for the Lakers.
Clark is a high-energy guy that spaces the floor on offense and crashes the boards on both ends.
Clark’s length and athleticism will be a great addition to a defense that allowed 101.2 points per game last season.
Cavs fans are in for a treat when Jarrett Jack hits the floor.
Jack plays well off the ball, possessing the ability to run off screens and spot-up on the perimeter. When the ball is in Jack’s hands, you already know he will sock it to anyone that attempts to guard him.
Jack dropped 23 points on an eye-popping 10-of-14 shooting from the field.
Time after time, Jack went to work on Ty Lawson and the Nuggets, leaving them simply dazed and confused.
Whether he is featured at the 2-guard spot alongside Irving or bringing the ball up the court with Waiters waiting on the wing, Jack is going to put in work.
Aside from the skills Jack brings to the table, what will prove to be vastly beneficial for the Cavs is the veteran leadership that will now be present in the locker room. In order to make it through the rigors of an 82-game season and into the postseason, guidance is exactly what a young squad like Cleveland will need.
Dan Gilbert and Co. deserve a pat on the back for acquiring a big man who—alongside Irving and Anthony Bennett—can lead the Cavs to greener pastures going forward.
Sure, we do not know if Bynum will be able to replicate the 18.7 points and 11.8 rebounds he averaged during the 2011-12 regular season. Moreover, nobody knows if he’ll ever play one game as a Cavalier.
Such a move is a risk.
Nevertheless, it is a risk worth taking.
When Bynum is on his game, the guy is big time.
At 7’0”, 285 pounds, very few big men in the NBA can challenge Bynum in the interior.
Bynum’s array of skills in the low-post will take a lot of pressure off of the Cavs’ guards to produce on the offensive end.
Plus, Irving and Bynum in the pick-and-roll could become one of the most unstoppable plays in the NBA.
If Bynum does make it out on the court, watch out, for Cleveland will be a team no one wants to mess with.
The struggles and heartache experienced during the post-LeBron James era will soon be long gone for the Cavaliers and their fans. Acquiring Earl Clark, Jarrett Jack and Andrew Bynum clearly shows that the Cavaliers are committed to building a team that’s capable of challenging the top dogs in the Eastern Conference in the near future.
Who knows, that time may be sooner than we all think.