Call me a hater, I was one of the people saying the Cleveland Cavaliers would be a 30-win team nowhere near a playoff berth without LeBron James. Call the Cavs fans stubborn, they packed the Q for their season opener on Wednesday night. The fans were rewarded with a 95-87 home win and can already claim one advantage over LeBron — a win over Boston. The 1-0 start is nice and all, but it’s no reason for Cavs fans to get excited.
Forward J.J. Hickson was Cleveland’s go-to player scoring 21 points on 8-11 shooting in 30 minutes. His performance Wednesday night makes one wonder why the only place we could locate Hickson last year in the playoffs was the back of a milk carton, but that’s a question for Mike Brown, not Byron Scott. So if this group of no-names in the starting lineup proved what’s on the front of the jersey matters more on the back, why not get excited?
Because games early in the season are all about meaning.
This game meant a heck of a lot less for Boston than it did for Cleveland. The Cavs were playing their season and home opener, in front of a packed house, and they were eager to prove they didn’t need LeBron. Boston on the other hand was coming off a playoff-like win in their season opener against the Miami Heat. The environment was similar to an NBA Finals game, and it was the season debut for both teams. They traveled from Boston to Cleveland on back-to-backs and put less effort into the game. Take it to Boston and give the Celtics full rest and things will be much different.
As for the Cavs, I did underestimate them. They may be closer to a 35 win team rather than the 30 win team I projected. Either way, you’re not reaching the post-season, Cleveland. Sorry.Google+