Tag: Cleveland Cavaliers

LeBron James, Kevin Love

Report: LeBron James was concerned about Kevin Love not putting winning first


LeBron James was reportedly upset with Kevin Love for not fitting in.

Can we get more specific?

Ethan Skolnick of Bleacher Report:

It’s safe to say that the soap opera isn’t on permanent hiatus, even after Love—following a poolside pow-wow with James—re-signed for five years, a decision that suggests he’s not especially queasy about their ongoing collaboration. It also should alleviate James’ concerns, which he expressed to many confidants, especially early in the season, that Love wasn’t ready to put winning first.

Despite his excellent individual production, Love never made the playoffs with the Timberwolves. That was his norm for his first six seasons in the league. So, joining the title-contending Cavaliers was surely a culture shock.

At times, LeBron probably was not patient enough Love’s adjustment.

But, as Skolnick said, Love showed a huge commitment to winning by re-signing with the Cavaliers. The power forward could have bolted to a bigger market, escaping LeBron’s shadow and scoring more. And yes, that deal might have been somewhat about the money, but Love could have gotten more (though less security) by taking a two-year deal with a player option.

Love valued winning.

I expect year two with Love and LeBron to go better than last season. Love will have to show more he’s willing to make the sacrifices necessary to win, but late last year, LeBron showed a better understanding of Love’s predicament.

LeBron’s concerns were understandable, but if all goes right for Cleveland, they’ll become less and less relevant.

Nominees for first ever NBPA “Players Awards” are out

Houston Rockets v Golden State Warriors - Game Five

Michele Roberts is giving the players what they want as the new executive director of the National Basketball Players Association  (the NBA players’ union). She knows she needs their loyalty during the looming 2017 lockout, so she’s trying to build up good will now. She’s doing the little things that resonate with players. Like questioning why there are media in the locker rooms before games. Or pushing back against the owners on the age limit.

Or giving the players their own chance to vote on the big NBA awards (most postseason awards, such as MVP or Rookie of the Year, are voted on by the media).

The first ever “Players’ Awards” will take place July 19 at the Rio hotel in Las Vegas (and be broadcast on BET July 21). Every NBA player was given the opportunity to vote in a variety of categories, and Thursday the list of nominees was released.

Here they are:

Best Rookie
Jordan Clarkson
Zach LaVine
Elfrid Payton
Andrew Wiggins

Best Defender
Tony Allen
Jimmy Butler
Anthony Davis
DeAndre Jordan

Global Impact Player
Pau Gasol
Kyrie Irving
Dirk Nowitzki
Tony Parker

Clutch Performer:
Stephen Curry
James Harden
LeBron James
Russell Westbrook

Coach You Most Want to Play For
Mike Budenholzer
Rick Carlisle
Steve Kerr
Greg Popovich

Hardest to Guard
Stephen Curry
James Harden
LeBron James
Russell Westbrook

Best Home Court Advantage
AT&T Center (San Antonio)
Chesapeake Energy Arena (Oklahoma City)
Moda Center (Portland)
Oracle Arena (Golden State)

Player You Secretly Wish was On Your Team:
Stephen Curry
Anthony Davis
Tim Duncan
LeBron James

Most Valuable Player:
Stephen Curry
James Harden
LeBron James
Russell Westbrook

That list looks pretty similar to the media awards, upon first glance. Save for no Kawhi Leonard or Draymond Green as best defenders. Also, no LeBron James or Kobe Bryant in the category naming the players with the greatest global impact?

Whether you think these awards are more fair or accurate than the traditional media ones largely will depend on whether your guy wins in his category. For example, don’t be shocked if James Harden wins the Players Award MVP, so if you were a Harden guy you will think the players got it right after the media screwed it up.

I’ll just say this: Don’t think they are less biased than the media. Players have a lot of agendas — they will vote for guys with the same agent, AAU buddies, their friends, and on down the line. There is plenty of bias to go around.

Report: LeBron James informs Cavs he will re-sign

LeBron James

In the least surprising development of free agency, LeBron has informed the Cavs that he will re-sign after opting out of his contract, according to ESPN.com’s Chris Broussard:

The fact that James is re-signing is not news. He was always going to; he was just waiting to make it official until they handled their other business first. Dan Gilbert already locked up Kevin Love and Iman Shumpert to long-term deals, and talks with Tristan Thompson remain ongoing. The Cavs also signed Mo Williams to a one-year, $2.5 million deal.

The contract is the same deal he signed last summer: a two-year max with a player option in the second year, which will allow him to take advantage of salary cap jump next summer.