The Cleveland Cavaliers haven’t shown much of an interest in showing a pulse so far in the 2016-17 season. After yet another lifeless effort, this time against the Knicks in a 114-95 loss at home, they fall below .500 for the season.
Kevin Love led the Cavaliers with 22 points and 11 rebounds while LeBron James had a quiet day with 16 points on 7-15 shooting alongside 10 rebounds and seven assists. That didn’t matter much, as the duo of Kristaps Porzingis and Tim Hardaway Jr. combined to score 66(!) points. Enes Kanter, for his part, was a terror on the offensive boards en route to 18 points and 12 rebounds.
They’ve had a Charmin-soft schedule and have mostly wasted the opportunity after dropping home games to Orlando and New York while dropping road tilts against the Nets and Pelicans.
The answers have been mostly simple for the Cavaliers: as usual, they don’t seem to care too much. They jog back in transition, fail to rotate on defense (or have three defenders close out at the same time) and have struggled to cover for these woes on offense, where the strain of implementing several new players and four different starting lineups in the last six games has led to protracted stretches of incompetence. When paired with the woeful transition defense, it’s pretty much impossible to overcome.
This team isn’t very good right now. They probably will be later. For the foreseeable future, they probably won’t be. In the meantime, Tyronn Lue will have a lot of work to do.