The first look at the John Beilein-era Cavs will come on Oct. 7.
On Thursday, the Cavs released their 2019-20 preseason schedule. It includes four games: Oct. 7 at home against Argentinian club San Lorenzo de Almagro, Oct. 11 against the Pistons in Detroit, Oct. 13 at home against the Celtics in Boston and Oct. 15 at home against the Celtics again.
All games will air on Fox Sports Ohio, as well as on the radio at WTAM 1100.
From a novelty standpoint, the most interesting team on the schedule is San Lorenzo de Almagro, the reigning champions of Argentina’s Liga Nacional de Básquet. The team previously faced the Raptors in a preseason in 2016, with Toronto winning 122-105. San Lorenzo’s current roster is a mix of Argentinians and Americans, including Saginaw, Michigan native Dar Tucker. Tucker led the team in scoring last season.
Cleveland has played against international teams in preseason action before. It previously played Maccabi Elite Tel Aviv in 2006, Athens Olympiacos in 2009, CSKA Moscow in 2010, Montepaschi Siena in 2012 and Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv in 2014. The Cavs’ only loss in those contests was a 100-97 loss to a CSKA Moscow team that featured future Cav (and NBA champion) Sasha Kaun, Boban Marjanovic and former Cavs first-round pick Trajan Langdon. Cleveland’s starting lineup for that game was Daniel Gibson, Ramon Sessions, Jamario Moon, Ryan Hollins and J.J. Hickson.
Overall, the most interesting part of the four-game slate will be seeing how John Beilein deploys his players, what lineups he uses and who actually gets to play. It wouldn’t be too surprising if Kevin Love and/or other veterans were held out of some games. But there still should be some insight into what Beilein’s initial rotation will look like and how the likes of Collin Sexton, Darius Garland, Cedi Osman and others fit into his vision.
The Cavs’ regular season schedule is expected to be released sometime later this month.