Posts tagged: NBA

Poll: Should Shaq Stay in the CavsHistory Banner?

[polldaddy poll=3574040]

So the CavsHistory banner is kindof reserved for Cavs greats. Its basically our Mt. Rushmore. Should Shaq stay or go? If you want him out, leave a comment on who should replace him.

Mt. Rushmore

Big Z Thanks Fans, Asks for Understanding

On the heels of the longest tenured Cav in history signing with the Heat to chase a championship, Zydrunas takes a path less traveled… he asks for understanding.

Check out the ad he placed in the Plain Dealer on Sunday:

 

Dear Cleveland....

As always, Z is a class act.

 

Cavs Sign Forward Joey Graham to Two Year Deal

Cavs have signed Joey Graham (twin of Cav Alumni Stephen Graham) to a 2 year $2.1m deal.

Twin #1 (Stephen)

 

Wayne Embry likes him… and he knows talent (or did).

I hope he does do well, but these seems very Ira Newble-ish to me.

Press release via Cavs.com below.

The Cleveland Cavaliers have signed guard/forward Joey Graham to a contract, Cavaliers General Manager Chris Grant announced today. Per league and team policy, terms of the contract were not announced.

Twin #2 (Joey)

“We’re excited to add Joey to our roster. He adds a tough, veteran presence on the perimeter that will complement the pieces we have in place,” said Cavaliers General Manager Chris Grant. “With his strong work ethic and discipline, we feel he is a great match with the culture we have built and continue to build.”

Prior to joining the Nuggets, the 6-foot-7 guard/forward played four seasons with the Toronto Raptors. In the 2008-09 season, Graham posted career highs of 7.7 points and 3.7 rebounds in 19.8 minutes over 78 games (10 starts). In the 10 starts, he averaged 11.0 points and 4.0 rebounds in 28.3 minutes.

“Joining Cleveland marks an exciting, brand new start for me,” said Graham. “This is a great opportunity and I’m excited to come in and help the team as much as possible.”

In his career, the five-year veteran has played in 338 games, including 76 starts, and averaged 6.0 points and 2.9 rebounds. He has shot .815 from the free-throw line and .485 from the field.

Will add him to the site when he plays a game

Cavaliers Sign Christian Eyenga

The Cleveland Cavaliers have signed guard/forward Christian Eyenga to a contract, Cavaliers General Manager Chris Grant announced today. Per league and team policy, terms of the contract were not announced. 

Kid Congo

Eyenga, 21, was the Cavaliers’ first round selection (30th overall) in the 2009 NBA Draft. He averaged 3.9 points on .561 shooting and 2.0 rebounds in 12.0 minutes in 29 regular season games during the 2009-10 season with DKV Joventut Badalona of the Spanish League. The Spanish League is widely regarded as the second-best domestic league in the world behind the NBA. In 11 EuroCup games, the 6-foot-5 guard/forward posted averages of 3.4 points on .444 shooting and 1.2 rebounds in 9.7 minutes per game. 

“We’re looking forward to having Christian continue his development on the court here with Coach Scott and our team,” said Cavs General Manager Chris Grant. “He has worked hard and we were very encouraged by his recent performance in summer league.” 

A native of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Eyenga most recently played in all five games of the 2010 NBA Summer League with the Cavaliers, reaching double figures in each of the games. In five games (all starts), he averaged 11.4 points on .435 shooting, 4.2 rebounds and 1.0 block in 29.2 minutes per game. 

“I am happy to be here in Cleveland and excited to play with the Cavaliers this season,” Eyenga said. “This is a great opportunity for me and I look forward to playing for Coach Scott and learning from him, our coaches and my teammates.”

 

What They’re Saying…

David Aldridge of TNT talks about how Byron Scott is the guy to take us forward with what is left.  He paints a picture that Scott has the pedigree and the experience. But what how it all plays out is anyone’s guess.

The AP submitted a little story about how us broken hearted Clevelanders are taking out their anger in a constructive way.  By giving LeBron gear to homeless shelters in South Florida.

Joe Gabriele of Cavs.com wrote a story about the new shape of the Eastern Conference.  The Cavs and the Heat were dropped into the “Extreme Makeover” category. Something to consider if you bet on sports.

Britt Robson of Sport Illustrated wonders how some of the big signings are going to turn out.

Mark Stein doesn’t think Shaq will be welcome to join the Super-Heat in Miami.  Apparently, some of the bridges he burned while leaving for Phoenix are still burnt. But he still thinks the big guy is still the biggest name left on the FA market.

 

D-Block

Looks like our old buddy Darnell Jackson may be playing for the Kings and not with the King next year.

Remember how Penny Hardaway was coming out of retirement, maybe to play with the heat?  Well, that only took five days.

 

Is J.J. our Guy? Summer League Thoughts

How Big Will J.J.'s Role Be in '10-'11?

So the summer league is underway and by all reports J.J. is looking like he is thriving in the new fast paced offense.  Reportedly J.J. spent a lot of time since the end of the 2009-2010 season working on his mid range jump shot.  With his natural instincts to find cutting lanes, it is only going to help him produce more as other teams won’t be able to just “zone him up”.

Also of note is the surprising production of a certain”Pooh” Jeter – who is getting some love from witty interneters.  Regardless of how many fun things you can do with his name, the dude is putting up 15.5 over 2 games.

Christian Eyenga – drafted last year – is looking taller and longer than I remember.  All the promised athleticism is there – so regardless of his production overseas last year and with the roster changes Kid Congo just might suit up next year in the regular season.

Its early, and the competition is… slim.  Windhorst has described Hickson as looking like a man amongst boys this summer. Regardless, him learning to thrive without just living on drive and kicks from a certain #23 is important.  Cavs new season will be a dawn of a much more equal opportunity offense, shots earlier in the clock and a lot less standing.  All these things are tailor made for someone with J.J.’s game.

Zydrunas Ilgauskas Joins the Miami Heat

via the PD & @PDCavsInsider

MVP Rookie Challenge MVP

Zydrunas Ilgauskas, the heart of the Cavaliers franchise for the past 14 years, is moving on.

Ilgauskas will sign with the Miami Heat to join former Cavs teammate LeBron James, Ilgauskas‘ agent told The Plain Dealer today.

Ilgauskas will accept the veteran’s minimum of $1.3 million for next season.

The Cavs offered Ilgauskas a guaranteed contract, but he elected to go to Miami, where his wife Jennifer has family, and attempt to win a championship with the re-stocked Heat.

“It was a hard decision for him,” said Herb Rudoy, Ilgauskas” longtime agent. “He has 14 years invested in the Cavs and he wants to win a championship. He’s going where he has the best chance to win a championship.”

Ilgauskas is the Cavs franchise’s all-time leader in games played (771), rebounds (5,904) and blocks (1,269) and

Stood Tall for 14 Years

is second in points (10,616). He made All-Star appearances in 2003 and 2005 after recovering from reconstructive surgery on his foot.

Last season was a difficult one for Ilgauskas as he moved to the bench for the first time to back up Shaquille O’Neal. Then he was traded in February as part of a deal for the Cavs to acquire Antawn Jamison. He took a buyout from the Washington Wizards and returned to the Cavs a month later but had lost his rhythm and his spot in the rotation and he did not play strongly down the stretch.

He averaged 7.4 and 5.4 rebounds in his final year with the team.

One of the better offensive rebounders in NBA history with 2,336 of them, Ilgauskas also still is effective with his mid-range jump shot. The Heat has been looking for big men after letting its starting center, Jermaine O’Neal, leave in free agency.

The Cavs and Heat were one of six teams to show interest in Ilgauskas. Both were believed to be willing to offer him the same contract.

Goodbye Z

Z Can Do Whatever He Wants

Rumors are abuzz that Big Z is likely going to Miami to chase a ring (follow @PDCavsInsider to keep up w/ it).

It would be awesome if he stayed for his last years in Cleveland. But he has more than earned the right to do whatever he wants and receive NO backlash from Cavs/Cleveland supporters.

He was supportive when the Cavs signed Shaq and took a smaller role.

He kept his mouth shut (for the most part) when Brown didn’t play him on his “most games played” record setting night.

He was humble when he was traded (so WE could win, mind you) and was even MORE humble to resign AND take a smaller role.

Great guy. Cavs for life.  Number 11 will hang in the rafters some day. No doubt.

 

Big Z

 

 

Open Letter from CavsHistory.com on the Impact of LeBron’s Decision

Hi Cavs Fans,
I don’t know if we have been properly introduced. My name is Doug Cassidy, I’m a Clevelander (Berea) who now resides in Los Angeles (ironically a decision that I made for a job). I’ve been running CavsHistory.com for just over 10 years. Its mostly a one many shop, but my good friend Matt (@matty_munch) writes here under the pseudonym Crunch every once in a while.

As many of you know, this site is not an editorial site nor an opinion site. At least twice a week I get a request from someone asking if they can “write” for this site. Intentionally I have avoided this because I always intended this site to be a resource for Cavs fans to go to to look up any info that has to do with the Cavs. All objective, no subjective (I will address how I strayed from that a bit later on – and corrected it today).

So, this post is out of character for me, but I wanted to let you all know how I feel about LeBron’s decision and how it will effect this site. Bare with me.

LeBron James is a phenomenal talent from our home state of Ohio who we were undoubtably lucky as

LeBron on Draft Day

Cavs fans to have on “our” team for seven years. One of my best sports memories will be the 2003 draft night. Its the closest I’ve ever known what winning a championship feels like.

 

The site was barely visited in its first three years. And I have to admit after we drafted LeBron his popularity did motivate me to grow and mature the site. Partially because its more fun to work on it while we were winning and partially because his popularity made CavsHistory more popular, which meant I got A LOT more feedback and requests. As you can see, the complete history of the Cavs is continuing to be documented here (with some glaring deficiencies – Box Scores, etc…).

The one part of CavsHistory that I have always been a bit uncomfortable with was “The LeBron Phenomenon” page under Miscellaneous.  It was indeed fun to document all of the things whirling around his success and celebrity, but it just didn’t seem to fit on a site dedicated to a team, not a person.  I have thought about removing that content several times.  And today, I ultimately did. Its gone.  Not out of spite, but because it really doesn’t make sense now that he is not a Cav.

Besides that, how will LeBron leaving impact this site?  Well a few notes:

  1. He will stay in the banner. He is arguably the most important Cavalier in their 40 year history.  He belongs up there with the legends (Shaq might go.. but that is another story)
  2. I have returned his player profile picture back to his rookie photo.  It has always been my policy that I use the original photo of a player when he started with a team (or at least the earliest I can get my hands on). My apologies to Z, but your goofy rookie photo stays. I put up a more recent photo of him this past year.  Why? because I thought it was a cool picture. Now, I just can’t see giving him special treatment.
  3. The rest stays the same. I have the full intention of dedicating a lot of time to maturing this site for your enjoyment and reference.

Now to the opinion part.  I am dreading this.

I actually felt embarrassed for LeBron and the way that he decided to present himself and his decision. I thought it was inappropriate and not handled well. I am extremely disappointed that he is leaving and I personally do not think it is the right choice for him or his legacy, but as a Cleveland fan I have learned that this will happen and I cannot take that choice personally.  But, the way that he conducted himself I have trouble not taking offense to.  The fanfare may have proved that yes, he is undoubtably the biggest star on the NBA landscape, and possibly in all of American sports but I do not think that means you should casually behave as such.  I can’t imagine what it must be like to have his talents or stature.  The pressure must be crushing.  But I am also reminded of the gifts he has been given as well. I believe that his conduct leading up to the decision was surprisingly disconnected with reality and worst of all extremely narcissistic.

 

Why do this with such lack of tact?

Cavs fans.  We now have to do something that we have avoided doing for a long, long time.  Take our blinders off. LeBron’s behavior throughout his NBA career has been consistently less than humble.  “I played great” “My talents” “I carried our team”.  These are things that a self aware person, a humble person should ultimately leave for others to say. His demeanor has always made me uncomfortable. But, I forgave him because of his very odd life experiences.  I doubt I would be very grounded if I had been told I was the best basketball player on earth since I was 15.  It must be confusing. Also, he was our star.

But make no mistake. Forgiveness or not, he is not MY player any more.  I am not HIS fan.  I will hold him up to the same scrutiny as I do anyone else. No more, no less.

It will be hard for me to part with a lot of the things that adorn my office.  LeBron’s Nike shoes, McFarlane statuettes, cool posters.  But I will.  I am a Cavs fan.  And unfortunately this means I now actively root against LeBron James.

Stay strong an cheer with pride. We root for the name on the front of the jersey, not the name on the back.

Go Cavs,
Doug (dcass) – @CavsHistory

p.s. I want to thank some really cool people in the Cavs network for just being cool

  • Glen Infante – (@GlenInfante) insanely talented  artist. Has his hands in RealCavsFans, LeBron2010, and ILTHY.  He may have done more than any other single individual to actively get LeBron to see how much we wanted him to say.
  • Ben – (@realcavsfans) over at RealCavsFans – best Cavs Talk site on the web.
  • Brian Spaeth – (@brianspaeth) actor, writer, promoter?, Cavs Fan and (my opinion) slightly insane
  • Scott – (@WFNYScott) great, great, GREAT writer for Waiting for Next Year. Keep it up.
  • Brian Windhost – (@PDcavsinsider) Cavs beat writer for the ABJ and now the Plain Dealer. At least we still have the best in the biz in this respect.
  • Amanda Petrak – (@apetrakcavs)A childhood friend who is now PR Director for the Cavs.  She never let her success or the success of the team change her.
  • and most of all: Dan Gilbert – Cavs majority owner and a personal idol of mine in business (read his “isms” sometime – he “gets it”) – he has done so much for LeBron, this organization and Cleveland.  His leadership has helped me realize that the owners win championships, not the players.  He’s got the goods guys.  Just you wait.

Cavaliers Exercise Team Option on Leon Powe

he Cleveland Cavaliers have exercised the team option on forward Leon Powe, Cavaliers General Manager Danny Ferry announced today from Cleveland Clinic Courts. Per league and team policy, terms of the contract were not announced. 

In returning from a knee-injury that kept him out of action for the first half of the 2009-10 season, Powe returned to the court and played in 20 games

Powe

Powe

(two starts), averaging 4.0 points on .429 shooting and 3.1 rebounds in 11.8 minutes per game. In 209 career games (16 starts), Powe has averaged 6.3 points on .517 shooting and 4.1 rebounds in 14.4 minutes per game.

“Leon has worked hard to rehab and get himself back on the court this past season. Now he has a full summer to continue working, play more basketball and come back to start next season better than ever,” said Cavaliers General Manager Danny Ferry. 

The 6-foot-8 forward was selected by the Denver Nuggets with the 49th overall draft pick in the 2006 NBA Draft and traded for by Boston on draft night. He signed with the Cavaliers as a free agent on August 11, 2009. In 2005-06, Powe led the PAC-10 in scoring (20.5 points per game) and rebounding (10.1 rebounds per game) at California, becoming only the sixth player in conference history to accomplish the feat while earning All-PAC-10 honors.