For Cavaliers’ fans, last season led to a question of “what if?”
What if Kevin Love and Kyrie Irving had been healthy through the playoffs and into the Finals? What if the threesome found a more comfortable groove earlier in the season? Would the drought have ended?
LeBron James is thinking the same thing, based on this Instagram post from Sunday night.
When Irving, Love and LeBron were on the court together last season (1,441 minutes), they outscored opponents by 13.6 points per 48 minutes. After the All-Star break, they were +14.7 and did that mostly with a defensive rating of 99.2 (points per 100 possessions). For the season, the trio had an offensive rating of 113.5 points per 100 possessions when paired, which was 5.8 per 100 better than the team average and 3.7 per 100 better than the best offense in the NBA for the season (the Clippers).
LeBron is right to be excited — they should be better this season.
If they can stay healthy, if David Blatt can use the increased depth on the roster to keep that trio rested, the Cavaliers are the team to beat. And not just in the East.