Cedi Osman played a career-high 11 minutes for the Cleveland Cavaliers in their 121-114 win over the Atlanta Hawks. The opportunity was the first real display of trust that we’ve seen from Tyronn Lue in the Turkish rookie, as the game was close and each of his minutes were meaningful.
Osman rewarded Lue for his faith with a strong showing, accumulating five points, four rebounds, a steal, and an assist during his time on the floor. While he made some mistakes, his composure and shot selection was impressive and the two offensive boards he collected lead to five second chance points.
After the game, Osman was asked about not fearing the moment. Something Lue has noticed and complimented him on. His response was the greatest:
Having a player like Osman is something the Cavs haven’t had in awhile. He had success as a role player in Europe and has shown enough flashes to cause people to believe that he can be, at the very least, a rotation player in the NBA.
Rookies are rarely that effective, and Osman is no exception. It's too soon to expect him to be someone the team can rely upon. What matters is if he can continue to play smart team basketball, show flashes of his talent, and continue to earn the trust of the coaching staff.
By doing this Osman can help reduce the load on the veterans and breathe life into the oldest roster in the association. Getting a valuable contributor late in the draft is one of the best things that can happen to a contender. So far, Osman has shown enough flashes to inspire some legitimate optimism. And Lue also talked about how Osman could fill in for the injured Iman Shumpert, so this is likely not the last time we’ll see Osman make an imapct over the next few weeks.