My name is Tom, I'm posting this from the homeland of everyone's favourite Cavalier, Kyrie Irving, all the way down in Australia.
I thought I'd do what everyone else does at this time of the year and just write a preview on the season, predict how things will go only to watch the season unfold and eventually end up with egg on my face, nonetheless lets get going!
PG: Kyrie Irving, Donald Sloan, Jeremy Pargo
SG: Dion Waiters, Daniel Gibson
SF: Alonzo Gee, CJ Miles, Omri Casspi, Luke Walton, Luke Harangody
PF: Tristan Thompson, Samardo Samuels, Jon Leuer
C: Anderson Varejao, Tyler Zeller
We now all know the 15 man squad and have a pretty good indication of how the guys are going to line up and what roles each will have throughout the season. For all those keeping score at home Byron Scott has announced his opening night starting line up to tackle the Washington Wizards. He has opted for the line up most predicted coming out of the draft with Dion Waiters joining Kyrie in the back court while TT, Andy V and Zo making up the front court.
After revealing the starting line up, Byron also let the media know that he'll run with a 10 man rotation to start but was adamant that it could and potentially would change within a week or two obviously depending on results.
That begs the question who will make up the 'bench 5'. In my opinion that is a no brainer for most Cavs fans, first round pick Tyler Zeller will be the backup center, CJ Miles will provide the scoring off the bench at the 3 that Omri Casspi failed to produce as a starter and reserve last season and no matter what you think about him over the past few seasons Daniel Gibson will be backing up Dion at SG. The new look Slimardo Samuels will probably get the nod over new boy Jon Leuer after his impressive preseason and I believe Donald Sloan has beaten off Jeremy Pargo in the race to be Kyrie's backup.
So with the rotation sorted lets get on to the actual preview of the season. There is a fair bit of optimism in the air surrounding the Cavaliers, of course I pretty much only see that on the internet because NBA fans in Australia probably don't even know the Cavs still exist post LeBron. After we selected Waiters and Zeller I couldn't wait for the season to start and I was thinking playoffs, playoffs, playoffs. But as we get closer and closer to the season starting I am getting the feeling that we won't be nearly as good as some expect.
I know Kyrie is capable of nearly anything and I definitely shouldn't doubt his ability to carry this team, but outside of him I can't see where the scoring is going to come from. I am not a Dion Waiters hater at all, I actually like the pick, while it was a surprise I believe he has all the tools to be a more than handy player in this league. In saying that I fully expect to be frustrated by him all year and am prepared for him to struggle in his rookie season as he did through much of preseason. That is part of the reason that doesn't make me very optimistic about making the playoffs, Dion is probably going to be our second option scoring, and when you are preparing for your second option to struggle you aren't going to be in for a good time.
I expect us to be far better than last season and show some real improvement on our '11-12 campaign. However I just can't see how we are going to crack the top 8 despite the fact that we are in the substantially weaker Eastern Conference. I'm going to predict a 32-50 finish to our '12-13 season just solely based on how young the team is and how inexperienced we are. I obviously hope I am completely wrong but I'd love to hear everyone's thoughts on our season prior to tip off in just under 24 hours time! Thank God we all only have to wait that long, it's been far to long.
From all the way Down Under,