Cedi Osman’s 11 minutes and 18 seconds against the Hawks were not perfect. He had a team-worst -5 +/-, committed a silly turnover and a dumb foul on Marco Belinelli.
But Osman also had positives moments, something that bodes well for him moving forward if he ends up playing more with Iman Shumpert out. And they largely came because he played hard.
First, here is defending DeAndre Bembry. He’s beat off the dribble, but follows Bembry to the lane, puts his arms up and deflects a wild pass. As a result, the Kyle Korver ends up making a corner three-pointer in transition:
Next, in the third quarter, he nabs one of his two offensive rebounds on the night. As Channing Frye misses a three, Osman comes in from the opposite wing and ends up with the ball despite at least two Hawks being in better position. He then feeds Dwyane Wade for a wide open three-pointer:
Lastly, after Wade blocked Ersan Ilyasova later in the quarter, Osman scores because he ran the floor well. Wade passes to Korver and Osman simply runs ahead and ends up with a clear path to the rim:
This all the Cavs really need from Osman if he ends up playing more. He’ll make mistakes, yes. But he plays hard, knows where to go and, through effort, ends up in a position to make an impact on the game. On a team that has a tendency to coast, that has value. It’s not on accident that Lue has given him minutes this season in games and situations where the Cavs’ effort had been lacking.
Playing him alongside Wade, Korver makes sense, too, as it allows him to play the exact role he did against the Hawks. Especially while Iman Shumpert is out for roughly two months, the Cavs could use what Osman brings.