The Key To The Cavs Winning a Title Is ...........

bryan richardsonContributor IJanuary 12, 2010

PHOENIX - DECEMBER 21:  J.J. Hickson #21 of the Cleveland Cavaliers puts up a shot over Channing Frye #8 of the Phoenix Suns during the NBA game at US Airways Center on December 21, 2009 in Phoenix, Arizona. The Cavaliers defeated the Suns 109-91.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Christian Petersen/Getty Images

JJ Hickson. 


That's right. Not LeBron, Shaq, or Mo Williams. Obviously, those other guys are key to the Cavs title run, but that goes without saying. JJ is the Cavs 1st round pick from a year ago out of NC State who has grown leaps and bounds in just his second year in the league.

Anyone who has watched the Cavs this year can see that Hickson is an energy guy with great athleticism and a penchant for finishing strong at the rim. He reminds me sort of Anderson Varejo with his hustle and effort, only with a slightly more polished offensive game. And Hickson has also picked up one other thing from Varejo: moving without the ball. JJ has made a niche this year of backcuts and following missed balls while playing with three of the leagues best passers in Mo, Shaq, and LeBron.

The really great thing about JJ's emergence this year is that even if the Cavs decide to move on and include him in a deal, his improvement has been significant enough for other teams (Washington maybe?) to include him in a deal that could give the Cavs that possible missing piece like a Caron Butler or Antawn Jamison. With the expected return of Leon Powe around the All-Star break, it makes JJ that much more expendable. Can anyone say dynamite?