I left Cleveland for the sunny skies of Las Vegas and on my return, the Cavaliers have lost 3 more games. That is not very surprising, and at least I got to stay up late and watch a victory before leaving. Over the past three games (41 point loss to the Blazers, 8 point loss to the Clippers and 11 point loss to the Magic), two things have really popped out of the box scores to me: Alonzo Gee should not be starting (I've said this before) and Anthony Parker is drained.
Over these three games, Alonzo Gee has played 84 minutes (28 mpg), scored 17 points (5.7 ppg) and shot 6-20 (30%) from the field. His plus-minus for these games was a miserable -39. I have to say that Byron Scott's message to Christian Skyenga about playing defense has hopefully sunk in by now and it is time to return Skyenga to the starting line-up (Scott has hinted in the last few days about line-up changes so hopefully this is already in the works).
Anthony Parker gave us everything he has for the past few months, consistently logging 35 minutes per game. Parker is no spring chicken and this has caught up to him. Over the past 3 games, he has played 77 minutes (25.7 mpg), scored only 8 points (2.7 ppg) and is 0-fer three point range, going 0-8. Overall he is shooting 4-17 from the field in this span for a dreadful 23.5%. His plus-minus is even worse than Gee's at -47. He needs rest and the Cavaliers need to give it to him.
Our guy Skyenga broke out of a recent slump and looked good in the 4th quarter against the Magic last night. He scored 12 points and looked interested and active. Over the three games since I was out in Vegas, Skyenga put up 17 points to move to 250 points in his career. He has since passed two former Cavaliers, but he has also been passed by Samardo Samuels, who now sits at 253 career points. The 250 points does put Skyenga at 168th place on the Cavalier's Career Scoring List:
The two players passed by Skyenga were both part of the forgettable squad of 1982-83.
Larry Kenon was a forward for Memphis State University (which would become Memphis in 1994). He led MSU to the 1973 National Championship game where they lost to the UCLA dynasty led by Bill Walton. As a Junior that year, Kenon averaged 20.1 points and16.7 rebounds per game on his way to being named All-American. Kenon was drafted in the 3rd round by the Detroit Pistons, but chose to join the New York Nets of the ABA instead. He played two years withthe Nets before joining the San Antonio Spurs in 1975. He transferred to the NBA with the Spurs the following year andwas part of a dynamic scoring duo with George Gervin from 1976-77 thru1979-80, averaging over 20 points per game each season. He then signed with the bulls as a free agent in 1980 and played two anda half less productive years with Chicago. His soring average dipped to 14.1 then 7.2 in those two years andhe was waived by the Bulls 5 games into the 1982-83 season. The Warriors picked him up for a few games before selling him to the Cavaliers. With the Cavaliers, Kenon played 32 games, starting 7 and scored 235 points (7.3 ppg), which was a far reach from his 20 ppg heyday. He was waived by the Cavaliers in March of 1983 and never played again in the NBA. Kenon was a 3-time ABA and2-time NBA All-Star. He is also the current NBA record holder (along with Kendall Gill) with 11 steals in a game on December 26, 1976.
Steve Hayes was a journeyman center out of Idaho State who played 5 years in the NBA. In those 5 years, he played 212 games for 6 different franchises. The Cavaliers though so much of him that they traded a 1986 2nd round draft pick for him in October of 1982. That doesn't seem like that bad of a trade for the Cavaliers, although if they would have just waited, he would have been waived (like he was 5 different times in his career) and they could have picked him up as a free agent. Either way a 2nd rounder doesn't seem like a high price. Well that 1986 2nd round pick became Dennis Rodman, so in hindsight that was a large price to pay for a back up center who played 65 games for you and scored only 237 points (3.6 ppg). One year later he was waived by the Cavaliers.