“The Cleveland Cavaliers goal for the 2009-10 season is unmistakable – it is championship or bust, or as Shaquille O’Neal would say, win a ring for the king. The Cavaliers come into Staurday’s Wine & Gold Scrimmage with many new faces – none bigger than the 7’1 335 lb.””
The Cleveland Cavaliers goal for the 2009-10 season is unmistakable – it is championship or bust, or as Shaquille O’Neal would say, win a ring for the king.
The Cavaliers come into Staurday’s Wine & Gold Scrimmage with many new faces – none bigger than the 7’1 335 lb. O’Neal.
With the edition of O’Neal, the Cavaliers have their best chance to win an NBA Championship since the LeBron James era began six years ago.
O’Neal will easily be slotted into the starting lineup and will join James, point guard Mo Williams and, likely, power forward Anderson Varejao.
The question is, who will be the Cavaliers fifth starter?
Despite the off season issues, shooting guard Delonte West will likely be available for the opening game of the season, but head coach Mike Brown may go with newly-acquired Anthony Parker to play that role.
It will depend on what type of roster Brown wants.
He can choose to go with Parker and a bigger starting lineup and have West be a spark off the bench, or he can choose West and have Parker come in to guard the taller shooting guards.
Either way, Brown’s problem is a pretty good one to have.
With the additions of O’Neal, Parker, forward Jamario Moon, and forward Leon Powe joining the team midseason, the Cavaliers sport one of the deepest teams in the NBA.
Moon will be a key contributor off the bench in a role that plagued the Cavaliers last season – defending on the perimeter.
Another problem that plagued the Cavaliers last season was defending Dwight Howard, and O’Neal should confront that problem.
Last season, the Cavaliers relied on Zydrunas Ilgauskas to shoulder the load of defending Howard.
This season, Ilgauskas’ role will be much different. He will be asked to come off the bench and provide instant offense – something the Cavs lacked off the bench in last years postseason.
Any way you look at it, owner Daniel Gilbert and general manager Danny Ferry have put together a team that should be much better than the 66-win Cavs of a year ago.
The only question now is can the Cavaliers get over the hump?