The Cleveland Cavaliers sent a release out tonight indicating that Kyrie Irving could be out for up to four weeks while recovering from a "hairline/non-displaced fracture of his contused left index finger".
Dion Waiters will play his first real NBA game in his hometown of Philadelphia later on tonight. He'll come in averaging 14.7 points on 41 percent shooting through nine games to go along with 2.2 assists and 2.4 rebounds.
The last time he played in Philly was during the preseason. On October 17th, Waiters finished 2-9 from the floor for five points in 27 minutes.
I caught up with Dion following the Mavericks game on Saturday to talk for a minute about that return trip to the City of Brotherly Love:
As a heads up, I made myself write one hundred times on my dry erase board last night: "you are not a member of the Cavaliers in any way, Brendan". So hopefully that will keep me from using terms like "we" during an interview moving forward. I tried to quickly correct myself in talking with Dion, but it was too late. My bad on that.
Getting back to Dion's most recent performance, he was aggressive and did put a solid scoring number (16) on the board but his shooting percentage (25 percent; 4-16) was certainly not where it needed to be.
He put that pressure he mentioned on the referees to make calls at the rim, and should've gotten one when he tried to dunk on Chris Kaman's head late, but unfortunately the officials missed it.
He just needs to keep attacking like that moving forward no matter what happens. I have no problem with 16 field goal attempts, even with him missing 12.
Rookie Life: Dion Waiters has to wear this backpack
I took this picture of Dion's backpack last night and asked him if he was going to have to wear it when he went home to Philly.
Dion told me: "I'm not sure, Gibson said maybe I won't have to. I'm hoping I don't".
Waiters is listed at four on the current Rookie Ladder rankings at NBA.com this morning. He is also one of only three rookies listed on a poll asking which "rookie has been most impressive so far" this season.
After I voted this morning, Dion had 10,305 endorsements. Damian Lillard had 27,102 and Anthony Davis had only 4,171. I have no idea how that translates to the electoral college, however.no comments
This is probably going to make me unpopular. But I don't care.
The Cavs have to trade Anderson Varejao.
Plain and simple. I'm not going to even touch upon what's a fair trade or what he could bring back in a trade; that's for Chris Grant to decide. But after watching Varejao torch the Brooklyn Nets for 35 points and 18 boards, I made up my mind.
Trade the Wild Thing.
Varejao as an All Star, I'd love it. Would I love a playoff run? Of course. Who wouldn’t? But getting into the playoffs as the 7th or 8th seed does this team nothing. The Cavs need another lottery pick, and honestly, they probably need more than that.
They have no bench, and aside from Kyrie Irving and Dion Waiters, anyone on this team should be able to be had for the right price.
I just don't see how Varejao fits in long-term.
He's 30 and has been injured the last two seasons. In the 2010-11 season, Varejao was ruled out for the year by January 6.no comments
Any financial planner worth his salt would caution you to diversify and advise that the worst thing you can do is try to time the market. I happen to agree.
I believe trying to construct an NBA team in OKC’s image under the new CBA is the NBA version of trying to time the market. When you really think about it, it really is a crap shoot. Be bad, hit on your pick.
Be bad, hit on your pick. Be bad, hit on your pick. Win 50 games. It’s not something you see very often and considering they’ve already run into issues, namely having to trade James Harden, I think we can see the flaws in the model.
Not to mention the fact that while they’re a very good team with immense talent, they haven’t won anything yet.no comments
Big thanks to everybody who made it out to Two Bucks last night for the Terrell Brandon Appreciation night Tweet-Up. It was a fun time talking Cavs basketball with everybody despite the fact that the good guys fell to Kris Humphries and the Brooklyn Nets.
Major props go out to @1BE4IGO who came in rocking a Terrell Brandon jersey.
The jersey was actually from his younger days too and he even wore a JJ Hickson jersey over it. That's two Cavs Zine covers represented in one outfit for those scoring at home.
The artist behind all the Cavs Zine covers, @Cre8iveJuice, also gave away 5 bootleg copies of CavsZine3 that he went as far as autographing.
The bootleg editions, obviously, increase the Cavs Zine's resale value on the black market. Not that anybody would want to sell this something that looks as awesome as this, of course.
Two Bucks North Olmsted was great all night, and raffled off tickets to Saturday night's Cavs game at Dallas. My girlfriend also won a gift card and I swear that wasn't rigged.
I want to personally thank everyone who came out. As I discussed with Mr. Brenkus, @CavsWitness and others during the night, next year we will definitely be looking to throw a Cavs Zine release party. Last night might hopefully serve as a dry-run of sorts.
We may even have a picture that @LullOnSports drew of Tyrone Hill when he was twelve years old included in Cavs Zine 4 which would be incredible for obvious reasons.
Oh, and I also wanted to send some good vibes out to @JohnCesa who left the TweetUp late in the fourth quarter for a good reason. His wife was in labor.
Maybe the young Terrell Brandon Cesa (?) might make an appearance at next year's TweetUp.
Thanks again for coming you guys, good times for sure.no comments
The Terrell Brandon Appreciation Night Tweet-Up is on Tuesday, November 13th, at Two Bucks North Olmsted. We are having this Tweet-Up to celebrate the career of Terrell Brandon.
The event is also scheduled to coincide with the release of CAVS ZINE 3.
I interviewed Terrell for this year's issue. He said he was thrilled to be a part of it and thanked the Cavs Zine Institution for featuring him on the cover.
For more details on the Tweet-Up, below is the information included in the initial press release we published back on October 12th:
On Tuesday, November 13th at 7:30pm, we hope you can join us in appreciating the Cleveland Cavaliers career of Terrell Brandon. The Terrell Brandon Appreciation Night Tweet-Up (#TBAN) is going to be held at Two Bucks, North Olmsted.
The owner of Two Bucks, Cory, is a Cavaliers fan who reads StepienRules.com and remembers how great Terrell Brandon was in a Cavaliers uniform. We thought the #TBAN Tweet-Up was the least we could do for a player who was once considered The Best Point Guard in the NBA.
Click here for Two Bucks' website and directions to their new North Olmsted location.
The Cleveland Cavaliers will be plastered on HD televisions throughout Two Bucks during the #TBAN Tweet-Up. The Cavs travel to Brooklyn on Tuesday for a matchup with the Nets. Our goal for the Tweet-Up is to give Cavs fans a great reason to come out and enjoy an interactive evening of Cavs basketball.
As if drinks and food items regularly priced at two dollars isn't enough, Two Bucks will be also offering drink specials, raffles, and giveaways throughout the Tweet-Up.
It would be great if you could join us on Tuesday. Looking forward to talking Cavs with you then!no comments
With seven games and two weeks in the books for the wine and gold you can start to see trends taking shape, some good and some bad. In the end the Cavs started the week out with a buzz and ended it with a whimper. Such ups and downs should be expected from a team this young and a roster so incomplete. But as a proud shareholder of Glass Half Full Incorporated I think I’ll start with the good news.
I hate when people talk about “a case of the Mondays” but if this is what they mean I’d buy 20 cases and stock my basement for the winter. I can count on one hand the amount of times I’ve been down right euphoric while watching the Cavs since that cat left. This night was one of them. Kyrie continued to show the NBA world that he’s coming and with a small slate of games in the association, people were watching. They tuned in to watch Kyrie vs Paul for the first time. The 20 year old accepted the challenge and went at Paul all night starting with 16 points in the first quarter and ending with the final dagger hours later. He was amazing last year for a rookie and is better so far this year. I’m not sure how many more times I can type that.no comments
The score was 42-16, early second quarter. At that moment, I very well may have been the cockiest Cavaliers fan on the planet. Anderson Varejao was going to the All-Star game, I tweeted. Cleveland was obviously far superior to all things Phoenix, Arizona. The only thing the Suns had going for themselves was how they scripted that reversible logo at half-court.
I was looking around the bar hoping to see a Suns fan. Better yet, I was hoping they'd see me and become ferociously jealous about how awesome it must be to root for a team who just scored 37 points in the first quarter. By the time my man Bassy Tellfair was dribbling figure eights for 24 straight seconds to run out the clock, however, I was glad I never bumped into those Suns fans.
The Cavaliers followed up looking very, very good though by looking very, very bad on Friday. The breaking point was when Kyrie Irving and Anderson Varejao sat resting to start the fourth quarter. Sitting those two guys at the same time is equivalent to spotting the other team points. In this particular example, the Suns went on an 11-2 run to start the quarter. They took an 87-85 lead as a result and were on their way to completing their biggest home comeback in franchise history.
The reasons the Cavs gave up the lead include the following: Suns bench outscored Cavs bench 47-26; CJ Miles went 0-7 from the field on the night for a game worst +/- of -10; Kyrie Irving turned the ball over at the uncharacteristically high rate of 7 times; Shannon Brown and Sebastian Telfair combined to score 35 points on 12 of 19 shooting; Cavs only had seven players score in total on the game; Kyrie's last second shot rimmed out; youth, inexperience and growing pains.
How about Dion Waiters, though?
Dion Waiters was the Cavaliers leading scorer last night. He finished with an efficient 23 points on 9 of 13 from the field in 31 minutes.
He had a hand in allowing the Suns backcourt of Goran Dragic, Jared Dudley, Sebastian Telfair and Shannon Brown to combine for 69 points, and that's not good, but he's been pretty spectacular scoring the basketball lately. One step at a time.
Through six games, Waiters is averaging 16.7 points per game on 13 shot attempts per night. Not to be that guy, but I predicted that Waiters would score 16 points on 14 shots per game back on October 5th and I'm feeling pretty good about that right now.
I would definitely like to see him get more involved in the assists (2.5) and rebounds (1.7) department, but that will eventually happen. I had him at 3.8 assists per game anyways, so we're almost there. The biggest area of improvement is rebounding, where I do continue to believe he should be able to grab at least 5 per night.
Scoring wise though, Waiters has been electric at times looking like a superstar. He's scored 20+ twice now, adding this 23-point night to end the week to the 28-point outing he had on Monday to start it.
The Top-3 Rookie of the Year candidates include Dion Waiters at the moment. And I know it's only six games, but being in the ROY race after six games is still better than not being in it.
Next up for Cavaliers is the James Harden-less Thunder on Sunday.
Yesterday afternoon I caught up with our good friend Glenn Moore from Cleveland.com. We talked about the start to the Cavaliers season, and their latest win over the Los Angeles Clippers specifically. Click on the picture below for a link to that conversation.
Or click right here: Sports Insider at Cleveland.com. Thanks as always to Glenn for having me on.
There are so many reasons why the Cavs win over the Clippers last night has me leaping out of bed this morning. Dion Waiters was Dion "Freaking" Waiters for the first time in his Cavaliers' career. He had that swag we'd been hearing about all summer turned way up for his first performance in Hollywood as he hit one mammoth three pointer after another. When he leapt to meet Kyrie Irving mid-air, late in last night's game, I believe I may have seen the Cavaliers future flash before my eyes. And it was magnificent.
That future inclues an "exciting young backcourt" evolving into the "nastiest backcourt tandem" in the NBA. That's what I'm feeling like this morning at least. What I saw last night was everything I had hoped for coming into this year.
The 28 points he scored weren't really that important. Dion played like a guy that Meek Mill would be proud to shout-out in a song for the remainder of his Maybach Music Group contract. He hit those big shots while playing opposite guys like Chris Paul and Caron Butler. He wasn't scared of the moment, he looked like he belonged on stages like that, and he was spectacular.
Even more so, while watching Kyrie Irving play alongside him. I've said that Kyrie Irving is a top-5 point guard in the NBA right now. He is certainly that. But the way Irving approached last night's game, in that matchup with Paul, tells me that he's not satisfied being "amongst the NBA's best point guards". That kid is a killer and he could very well be the NBA's best all around point guard by season's end.
The dribble drive he made early to feed Tyler Zeller on that lob in the first half was maybe my favorite assist of Irving's career. That play set Zeller on his way to his best performance in the NBA to date and was only one of about six crazy highlights that Irving turned in on the night.