The one aspect of rebuilding an NBA team that is most overlooked these days is the importance of surrounding the young core you're trying to develop with actual NBA players.
Like, guys who can play for not only the Cleveland Cavaliers and Charlotte Bobcats but also actually crack the rotation on any other team in the Association.
Marreese Speights, for example, is a big man who would earn minutes on any team in the league. He'd be a great guy to pickup in fantasy basketball.
He might not be a starter for some teams, like he could be here next to Tristan Thompson moving forward, but he's going to be your third or fourth big man at worst.
He earned minutes already behind the best tandem in the league with Marc Gasol and Zach Randolph in Memphis, and I think now we are seeing what Speights is capable of in an expanded role.
Hopefully that expanded role continues to be here in Cleveland heading into next season.
Following the Cavaliers' win over the Orlando Magic last night I caught up with Big Mo to talk about all that.
I believe Speights is happy here being part of what the Cavaliers are building. I'm glad that all he's thinking and talking about right now is helping this team win and I hope he's afforded the opportunity to keep doing specifically that.
It goes without saying, or typing, but the opportunity Speights gives this team to actually win an NBA game is so much more real then when the twin towers of Ryan Hollins and Semih Erden were trotted out there last season.
The most important thing he's bringing right now, though—besides being a dude who's mad cool on Twitter with Cavs fans while averaging 15 points and seven rebounds in only 24 (!!!) minutes—is that he's helping Kyrie Irving, Tristan Thompson and Dion Waiters win basketball games.
At the end of the day, after all the cap space is counted, draft picks are stockpiled and advanced scouting metrics are calculated, these are the type of players who need to share a locker room with Kyrie Irving.
The ones who help Irving lead this Cavs team to wins.
The Cavaliers have won seven of their last 10 games for the first time since Byron Scott has arrived in Cleveland as of Saturday morning.
Drama continues tonight as the red-hot Denver Nuggets attempt to walk through the collective buzzsaw emerging from Quicken Loans Arena these days.
Oden + Andy + TT + Zeller + Speights + rookie = too many big men.
Something has to give; someone has to go.
Next draft has a lot of good big men.
Tyler, if you are out there:
1. Grab the ball---don't wait, don't hesitate, grab it hard and pull it in.
2. Slide, don't skip, on defense.
3. Bend your knees---don't worry about playing "big" when you're on D.
4. Fight for a spot in the NBA starting next game.
5-10. Own the ball, own the game, play like it's critical, all the time.
@BowersCLE @Mospeights16. I hope big mo is here to stay. Imagine next year with a healthy Andy. Our 4 big men would dominate the league!
@BowersCLE Andy could come off bench &save wear & tear. Really liked the article . He fits the system young & talented! Good job! !