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David Blatt says the Cavs are the 'team to beat'

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Former Cavs coach David Blatt had high praise for the Cavs in an interview with ESPN.

Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

David Blatt's tenure as Cleveland Cavaliers head coach was rocky to say the least. He was successful, sure, but he seemed to struggle to get along with LeBron James and in other aspects of the job. When he was fired, it wasn't exactly surprising.

SInce then, Blatt has been connected with a few open jobs - although he was passed over - and his next job remains up in the air. As it happened, Blatt was in Toronto to speak at the National Coaching Certificate Program (NCCP) Super Clinic at the same time as his former team was set to play Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Finals.

When in Toronto he spoke to ESPN's Dave McMenamin and said that the Cavs are 'the team to beat' for the NBA title.

From McMenamin's story:

"I think they're playing great," Blatt told ESPN.com on Saturday, shortly before Game 3 of the Eastern Conference finals between the Cavs and Toronto Raptors. "I think that the players and the coaching staff are doing a terrific job, I really do. And I think the fact that they are healthy and have actually even added a piece or two makes them the team to beat right now, in my opinion. That's really all I want to say."

Maybe he was just being polite, but there doesn't seem to be an ill will here. Blatt also talked to Tyronn Lue, his replacement, on the phone Saturday. And he also was in Atlanta when the Cavs faced the Hawks. Talk about an awkward coincidence.