The Cleveland Cavaliers are off to an 8-3 start without their All-Star point guard, and they have a top-10 offense and defense.
That’s impressive. While LeBron James himself doesn’t think it’s “send Bruce Willis to blow up the asteroid” worthy, he still expects more.
Here is what LeBron said, as reported by Dave McMenamin at ESPN. And whatever you do, don’t try to lay this at the feet of coach David Blatt.
“I’m not sitting up here saying it’s Armageddon or anything like that,” James said as the Cavs prepared to host the Milwaukee Bucks. “But we need to play better ball. Until we own that, we won’t get better….
“Coach got on us pretty well, rightfully so, which he should have,” James said of David Blatt. “We spent about 45 minutes in the film room, so [Wednesday] was not a day off. It was a day off from the court but not from us preparing and still getting better….
“He does his job as great as any coach can do in this league,” James said. “It’s up to us to go out and produce.”
Any time LeBron throws praise toward David Blatt, it’s news. Sure, if LeBron wants to run a play/choose a defensive set/coach the team then he will get his way. LeBron has the power in this relationship. But watch the Cavaliers at the end of games this season and they are running more Blatt-like sets than LeBron isolations, and there seems to be an understanding between LeBron and his coach.
That’s one of the things that needs to happen if the Cavaliers are going to contend for a title.