Last year, the Warriors gave the Cavaliers an embarrassing Finals loss. The Cavs could only win one game against the overly stacked roster of Golden State. With an offseason to come up with a plan to beat them, they decided “hey I know we lost, but let’s just try again it’ll definitely work this time.” They added more score first players and bad defenders. The only player on their roster who truly makes the team better is LeBron James. Isaiah Thomas, at times, can be an asset, but he’s known for his scoring.
With Dwayne Wade being bought out in Chicago, he was able to join the Cleveland Cavaliers. Now, as a primary playmaker off the bench, Wade could actually provide real value to the Cavs. However, they appointed him a starter before they even signed him. This means on opening night the Cavaliers will be greeting the Boston Celtics with a starting lineup of Derrick Rose, Dwayne Wade, LeBron James, Jae Crowder, and Kevin Love. James, Love, and Crowder are the only players in the lineup who are at least average shooters. Both Wade and Rose are slashers who need the ball to be effective and are below average shooters. Adding to the glaring weakness on offense, this team wouldn’t win a defensive award on opposite day. James and Crowder are the only average defenders in the lineup and Crowder is out of position at power forward.
Last year, Rose ranked 50 out of 69 guards in pass percentage per drive and he only averaged 4.4 assists becoming notorious for the vision the Holland Tunnel couldn’t beat. Wade isn’t known for his passing either which isn’t good considering they also can’t shoot or defend. Rose was ranked closer to the bottom of the league in defensive stats and Wade isn’t as great on defense as he used to be. Also, between the two they averaged 26.35% on three-point shots, and the league average is about 35 percent. .
In the frontcourt, Head Coach Tyronne Lue made the decision to start Jae Crowder at power forward and move Kevin Love to center. Crowder is only 6’6” meaning that even in the small ball era he’s shorter than the majority of players at his position, especially considering that guys like Kristaps Porzingis (7’3”) and Anothony Davis (6’11”) still play that position which diminishes his effectiveness on defense. In addition, with Love at center teams will have an abundantly easy time not only getting to the rim but scoring at it. Love is a good rebounder but the rebounds don’t count when they go through the hoop.
Off the bench, the only two-way player to be found is the inconsistent JR Smith. Besides him, Kyle Korver, Channing Frye, Jeff Green, Jose Calderon, and Tristan Thompson are all terrible defenders while Iman Shumpert and Thompson have been known to brick lay-ups.
Isaiah Thomas’s return will fix some of these problems such as the passing and shooting but he’ll only make the defense worse as he’s literally as bad as it gets on that end. With one 3 and D player and a below average shooting backcourt, this is easily one of the worst ways to use LeBron James talent. This team is a jigsaw puzzle made with 50 different pieces from 100 different games and even that would still probably fit better than this team. This furthers the point that the Cleveland Cavaliers are an awfully constructed team and no match for the Warriors. The addition of Dwayne Wade doesn’t change one thing.