Cleveland Cavaliers 2010-11 Season Review: Baron Davis, "The Hangover Part II"

Benjamin FlackSenior Analyst IMay 23, 2011

CLEVELAND - MARCH 29: Baron Davis #85 of the Cleveland Cavaliers keeps the ball inbounds during the game against the Miami Heat on March 29, 2011 at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio. 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 Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)
Jared Wickerham/Getty Images

Writer's Note: This is Part 1 of a 15 part series where I review the 2010-11 season of each of the Cavaliers players. Each player will titled with one of this summer's movies for a little added fun. I couldn't think of any better order to do this so I'm going alphabetically. Today: Baron Davis; Up Next: Semih Erden

Thank you Baron Davis, for getting too fat and lazy for your bloated contract, forcing the Clippers to get rid of you.

The trade of Mo Williams and Jamario Moon for Baron Davis and what ended up being the No. 1 pick in the draft could go down as the best trade in Cavs history. That's right...I said it.

This could be a Peyton Hillis for Brady Quinn-type situation.

As much as I like Mo Williams and appreciate everything he did for Cleveland on back-to-back 60 win teams, I'll always remember him as the guy who magically turned into either Kyrie Irving or Derrick Williams.

And I tweeted this on lottery night but I'll say it again here: Mo Williams has to be the Cavs 2010-11 team MVP. It's either him or the Clippers. I'll let you guys decide.

But this isn't about Mo Williams, it's about our boy B-Diddy.

When I first heard about the trade I was shocked. My first thought was that I was sad to see Mo go, but I would gladly take the extra lottery pick.

When I thought about Baron Davis, I was less than excited. I figured we'd be in for a Stephon Marbury situation where Dan Gilbert would end up paying Davis for the next two years just to stay away from the team.

Davis has a history of being a bad teammate—malcontent, lazy and a coach's nightmare (his clashes with Byron Scott in New Orleans were very public and devastated team chemistry in 2005).

But Davis is also a spectacular basketball player when he wants to be. He's a two time All-Star and was named to the All-NBA Third Team in 2004. He led the Warriors back to playoffs as an No. 8 seed in 2007 and anchored a historic first round upset of the top seeded Dallis Mavericks, averaging 25.0 PPG in the series.

Davis was understandably upset about getting traded from his hometown team in LA to the league-worst Cavaliers. He was going from throwing alley-oops to Blake Griffin out of sun roofs to having to deal with a bunch of D-Leaguers.

I assumed there was about a 95 percent chance that Davis would implode in Cleveland.

Man was I wrong!

The Cavs went 9-14 after acquiring Davis, who averaged 13.9 points, 2.4 rebounds, 6.1 assists, 1.07 steals and a team high 19.3 PER, with nine starts.

Davis was by all accounts a great teammate and a willing supporter of Coach Scott. He provided leadership and veteran savvy. Cavs fans won't soon forget the performance he put on during a March 29 defeat of LeBron James and the Miami Heat in Cleveland in front of a playoff-caliber crowd.

"Fear the Beard!" was the rallying cry of fans for the gregarious Davis.

Baron Davis' first year in Cleveland was a tremendous success, lending hope that the next two years and $28 million will be worth it.

But only time will tell.

Last year, Davis was hip and cool. He was the fun new player who revelled in the spotlight at The Q.

Next year he will likely be asked to help lead and teach his eventual replacement (either Irving, Kemba Walker, or Brandon Knight most likely).

How will Davis be as a teammate and player when there are two new rookies who will become the faces of the franchise and the future of the team?

He is certainly capable. But is he willing?

The Hangover was a fantastically wild ride. The first movie was everything we all expected it to be. It was a great party and a ton of fun. It seemed only logical that there would be a sequel.

But how good will The Hangover Part II be? Will it deliver like the first one did? Will it be the same wild, thrilling ride we all loved in the first one? Let's hope so.

The same goes for Baron Davis. The first year in Cleveland was an absolute blast. But what will year two be? Or year three? Will it be a party?

Or will it be a Hangover?

You can follow me on Twitter @ClevelandFlack

One more thing... I can't decide how often I should put out these articles. Once a week? Twice a week? Every other week? We've got 15 to cover. Give me some feed-back. Thanks.