CLEVELAND – The Cleveland Cavaliers are assembling a team that could be more dangerous than the Michael Jordan led Chicago Bulls from 1984 to 1998.
LeBron James is back with the team he started with. The Cavs signed Mike Miller and James Jones. Cleveland will reportedly sign 36-year-old veteran Shawn Marion. Ray Allen may sign with Cleveland either later this month or September. The Cavs and Minnesota Timberwolves reportedly agreed to a trade that will send the 26.1 points per game scorer Kevin Love to Cleveland on August 23rd.
However, the Cavs have an opportunity to snag another star two years from now. Oklahoma City Thunder star Kevin Durant could test free agency in 2016 and if he decides to go elsewhere, Cleveland is likely the top destination. Stars want to play with LeBron James, there is no mistaking that. Durant averaged 32.0 points per game last season, leading the Thunder to the Western Conference Finals.
There was speculation that Durant withdrew with Team USA due a contract situation. However, it was quickly refuted and the Thunder star said fatigue was the reason for he withdrew.
The Cavaliers are already looking like a legitimate threat to win the NBA Finals. Landing Durant in 2016 should be a top priority for a team already looking to have the best offense in the NBA. Adding Durant will solidify the Cavs chances of being a perennial championship threat.
Here is what the Cavs lineup could look in 2016:
Center: Anderson Varajeo (depending on health)
Power Forward:Kevin Love (assuming the trade happens)
Small Forward: LeBron James
Point Guard: Kyrie Irving
Shooting Guard: Kevin Durant (will need to convert to play with Cavs)
If Durant lands in Cleveland, he will likely have to convert to a shooting guard as Kevin Love and LeBron James will take the forward positions (assuming the Love trade happens). Yes, converting positions is a tough challenge, a tall order. However, Durant is a star and one the league’s top scorers. He may welcome the challenge for the sake of playing alongside James and a perennial championship threat.
Is Cleveland a selling point?
Playing in Cleveland has not been the best selling point in all of basketball, but now it is. The city is looking to blossom economically with the flats renovations along the Cuyahoga River. Also, the Cleveland Aquarium, Medical Mart, and new convention center will draw plenty of visitors. The biggest economic splash not related to sports is being the host of the 2016 Republican National Convention.
The Cleveland Browns are looking to be exciting with Johnny Manziel. Cleveland is finally getting out of the four year dark rut that seemed more like an eternity.