Even though now losers in 35 of their last 38 games, I refuse to believe that Lebron meant so much to this franchise that they'd immediately go from first to worst in the Eastern Conference. I refuse. Still, this is truly unbelieveable how the Cavs have fallen flat on their face since starting 5-5.
Along with LeClown, Cleveland also lost a lot of size with the departures of Shaq and Z, and their interior defense has suffered as a result. This is probably the area the Cavs need to address the most. While Anderson Varejao does the dirty work you'd like to see out of your starting center (before he got hurt), he's a little undersized for the position. One solution could be Sacramento's Samuel Dalembert. DeMarcus Cousins has emerged as the starting center for Sacto and clearly their guy for the future, leaving little use for the veteran Dalembert. So, I've come up with a trade idea that would make sense for both sides:
Cavaliers get - Samuel Dalembert, Darnell Jackson
Kings get - Daniel Gibson, Jamario Moon, and Ryan Hollins
The way I see it, the Cavs need Dalembert's size more than they need Boobie's one-dimensional gunning. Even if Dalembert leaves as a free agent at the end of the season, his exping contract would give Celeveland some needed cap relief and and opportunity to salvage something on what has been a dreadful season.
For the Kings, Gibson would obviously be the key component in this trade. His shooting would make him a decent fit next to Tyreke Evans and at least gives them something back for Dalembert, who isn't likely to return next season. Moon is an expiring contract, and yet another questionable signing made by former Cavs GM Danny Ferry (along with his 2005 signings of Larry Hughes, Donyell Marshall, and Damon Jones that would clog up the team's salary cap for years to come). Hollins is a servicable third-string center, if there ever was such a thing. OK, so Hollins sucks at basketball, but at least he isn't being paid much and is only under contract until 2012. Heading back the other way to make the numbers work is Jackson, a former Cavalier, who's been a winner if nothing else - He was the starting center on the 2008 National Champion Kansas Jayhawks.
Even though I'd probably give Byron Scott some more time to make some progress, but if Scott was to be fired after just one season, I wouldn't be too upset if I was a Cleveland fan. I'm starting to figure out why the Hornets canned him just last season. His rotations have been questionable to say the least. For one, he has Antawn Jamison floating around on the perimeter. He's 34 years old, Byron. He can't play there anymore. Though Jamison (17.1 PPG, 6.6 RPG) is still putting up solid numbers, he's settled for a considerably greater amount of threes this season than he has in any season of his career.
Scott's use of Ramon Sessions, Cleveland's top off-season aquisition, has also been rather peculiar. You'd think Scott's guard-oriented system would play to Ramon's strengths, but Scott doesn't seem to like to use Sessions as an undersized shooting guard alongside Williams, which is probably his more-natural position as it is. It's not like the Cavs are going anywhere this year, so I don't know why it would hurt to experiment a little bit. For whatever reason, Scott seems to be more comfortable with undrafted rookie Manny Harris at that spot.
No doubt LeBron's decision was a rude awakening for Mo Williams, who seemed to view playing with LeBron as a right instead of a privlege. Williams, though, has become a better player dishing the ball (a career-high 7.1 assists per game this season) as a result, even if his three-point percentage is uncharacteristically low (just 26.6%).
I proabably wouldn't trade either Williams or Jamison at the the coming month's trade deadline if I was the Cavs. Neither player has particularly high trade value at the moment and because both carry hefty contracts, Cleveland would get next to nothing in return. However, I might shop Jamison this summer as his contract reaches expiring status. Jamison will make just over $15 million in 2011-12.
Regardless of what happens, 2011 is looking like another tough offseason in Cleveland, even if it can't possibly be worse than it was in 2010.