As I sit back and reflect upon the 2012-13 Cleveland Cavaliers season, I get kind of sad. It wasn't a very good season. It was plagued with injuries and was utterly disappointing to fans of the team. But amidst the rubble of another horrible losing season, I have managed to find a lone bright spot. No, this wasn't the emergence of Tristan Thompson as an actual basketball player. No, this wasn't chatting with C.J. Miles about Community in the Cavs locker room. No, it wasn't the Cavs' kickass intro video. This was something much more significant.
Austin Carr made a Twitter account
And it's freaking phenomenal. Before I continue to describe why Austin Carr's Twitter account is great, you should follow him right now if you don't already. His handle is @MrCavalier34 and he's at just under 10,000 followers. He should have more followers than that. He should have all of the followers.
He exploded onto the Twitter scene during the middle of the season after much nagging from his partner, Fred McLeod. McLeod is pretty great on Twitter himself. He tweets while he calls games, which seems like some sort of dark wizardry because that's probably impossible. Austin was initially quite opposed to creating an account, but quickly embraced it once he came around.
I don't think there's a single person on Twitter who tweets more like how they talk than Austin Carr. You know how Fox Sports Ohio broadcasts are filled with Carr's emotional outbursts and sometimes incoherent thoughts? Well that's exactly what his Twitter account does. Each tweet is filled with passionate typos. His love for the Cavs is apparent and it's impossible to NOT read his tweets in his voice. Every gameday, he greets his followers and tells them it's gametime. This usually occurs 2 to 3 hours before the tipoff.
Hello Cleveland It's Game, Cavs must bounce back to keep the momentum they have built— Austin Carr (@MrCavalier34) February 11, 2013
Hello Ceveland It's Game Time,Cavs must keep their focus from beginning to end tonight in order to win— Austin Carr (@MrCavalier34) February 13, 2013
Leading up to games, he tweets out some stats about the Cavs' opponent. Sometimes those stats are useful and sometimes those stats are total nonsense.
Here's an example of a relatively insightful tweet.
Hornets bench will be a challenge for Cavs bench tonight ,they avg 36.8 pts a contest, they have out scored 36 of 54 opps this year— Austin Carr (@MrCavalier34) February 20, 2013
Here's an example of a not-so-insightful tweet.
Plus Bobcats have not won at home when they score under 80, defend to win tonight— Austin Carr (@MrCavalier34) April 17, 2013
I know you are all shocked to learn that the worst team in the NBA struggles to win when they score under 80 points at home. This season, teams were 2-41 when they scored fewer than 80 points at home. The Bobcats were 0-4. Not a particularly helpful stat, but we'll take it.
Like Fred McLeod, Austin started to tweet during games and give his raw analysis of what's happening on the court. It's impressive because he isn't just repeating what he has said on air. These are thoughts are totally different from his on-air color commentary. You really need to be watching the broadcast AND following his Twitter account to get the full Austin Carr experience.
Cavs attacking inside on both ends of court, looks like they are understanding how they have to approach the Wizards— Austin Carr (@MrCavalier34) March 12, 2013
Cavs had 5 to's in second Qt, but only cost them three pts, now it's the 3rd Qt start is very important , they will bring it in this Qt— Austin Carr (@MrCavalier34) March 16, 2013
See? That's some pretty solid analysis. And it's quite impressive that he's able to get those thoughts onto Twitter while also doing color commentary for the game. Of course, the punctuation is a bit off sometimes which makes his tweets only slightly easier to read than Tony Allen's. But it's still awesome.
Cavs getboffvto great start , their defense was Great and Speights and Kyrie are ready tonight— Austin Carr (@MrCavalier34) March 5, 2013
Cavs start slow , didn't seem ready on defense , can they recover this Qt, Wizards playing like they feel they are the better team????— Austin Carr (@MrCavalier34) March 12, 2013
Oh and Austin Carr loves question marks. He uses them all the time. He can't get enough of them.
Well we know what has to be addressed in the 3rd Qt, must come out of locker room ready to play not being comfortable with first half ????!— Austin Carr (@MrCavalier34) March 10, 2013
Cavs just can't find momentum in 3rd Qt, always a step behind in this Qt can't explain it ?????????— Austin Carr (@MrCavalier34) March 10, 2013
Can the Cavs beat a injured team and can they finish the game?????— Austin Carr (@MrCavalier34) April 12, 2013
At some point in the season, he discovered emoticons. And then he started using them all the time. Like, all the time.
These games get me going :-) Give me the ball :-)— Austin Carr (@MrCavalier34) March 5, 2013
Two things became very clear from his Twitter account: Austin Carr really misses playing basketball and the result of the Cavs game makes him either very sad or very happy.
Cavs lost the inside game and offensive momentum , that was it as far as game was concerned. Good night Cleveland :-( :-(— Austin Carr (@MrCavalier34) March 5, 2013
Can we find a way tonight , we better :-)— Austin Carr (@MrCavalier34) March 12, 2013
Good Night Cleveland tough night :-(— Austin Carr (@MrCavalier34) March 19, 2013
There's something heartbreaking about seeing Austin Carr use a sad face on Twitter. Maybe if the players all followed him on Twitter, they'd have some more motivation and give a harder effort. I know that I would hate to be responsible for making Austin Carr sad.
Well all I can say is Happy Easter enjoy -:( :-(— Austin Carr (@MrCavalier34) April 1, 2013
You see that?? You ruined Austin Carr's Easter. Way to go.
When the Cavs have a big game against someone like the Miami Heat, Austin becomes a fan just like any of us.
Hello Cleveland It's Game Time,It's the second game of BIG BOY Week for the Cavs.I think the Cavs realize the level they have to maintain,— Austin Carr (@MrCavalier34) March 20, 2013
I love Big Boy games they get my blood flowing , Go get them Cavs !!!!!— Austin Carr (@MrCavalier34) March 20, 2013
Hello Cleveland It's Game Time,It's BIG BOY time tonight.Pacers are very physical and try to make u fold under the pressure— Austin Carr (@MrCavalier34) April 9, 2013
And then when the Cavs suffer devastating losses...
wow what an emotional let down , Cavs came to play being able to finish is a learned experience good night Cleveland :-( :-(— Austin Carr (@MrCavalier34) March 21, 2013
Wow can't believe another game like this, good night Cleveland— Austin Carr (@MrCavalier34) April 16, 2013
But you can't keep Austin Carr down for long. In the end, he's just a hopeful Cavs fan like me and you. He's sat through some of the worst seasons in franchise history and believes that someday soon, it will all be worth it.
Well they got rid of that bad taste in their mouths , nothing like winning , good night Cleveland , I can sleep well tonight :-)— Austin Carr (@MrCavalier34) April 6, 201
people love to talk about our problems , one day we will come into these buildings and they will respect usGo Cavs— Austin Carr (@MrCavalier34) March 22, 2013
One day, Austin. One day.