Cavaliers, General

Tim Legler Didn’t Earn His Paycheck Today

legler_webWith analysis like this, you need a courtesy flush and plenty of TP.  And no, TP isn’t the bizarro universe love child of TD and DP.  Anyway, Legler “contributed” to the Daily Dime today with the prediction that the Cavs were going to get the top seed in the East.  That makes me happy, but his reasoning is mis-informed.  And it is this kind of thinking that we, as Cavs fans, have to attack mightily because all it does is harm Lebron James’ candidacy for the much-deserved MVP.  Legler had this to say.

The Celtics, with all of their injuries, have no rhythm right now, and the Magic need to figure out a way to steadily feed Dwight Howard at crunch time.

Those are the two biggest reasons that neither Boston nor Orlando can catch Cleveland. Cleveland is 4.5 games in front of Boston and five games ahead of Orlando, and with the exception of Ben Wallace, the Cavaliers are the one team that is not dealing with injuries.

Wha wha whaaaat?  Not dealing with injuries?

  At this current moment the Cavs are down a starter in Ben Wallace.  They are down a key $13.5 million reserve in Wally Szczerbiak.  They just got Delonte back and he is battling through some tough injuries to his back and wrist.  Sasha Pavlovic just got back from a high ankle sprain.  Tarence Kinsey did too.  On top of that, Boobie Gibson’s toe is still bothering him from the time he missed this season.  Oh yeah, and don’t forget the fact that Z is playing through a broken nose and a dislocated finger.

But other than that, yeah, they are relatively healthy, I guess.  And don’t forget Rick’s post from a few days ago where he pointed out that Cavaliers’ starters had missed 48 games (at the time) while Boston’s had missed 23.  So it really is just an ignorant statement at best.  And yet Lebron James has kept this train rolling.  No matter who has been there to help him out, he has pushed this team constantly.  To say that the Cavs haven’t been dealing with injuries is a shot right at James and his MVP position, if you ask me.  To say the Cavs haven’t been dealing with injuries is like putting a point in the MVP voting in the Dwyane Wade or Kobe Bryant column.  We can’t allow this line of thinking to persist. 

It is bad enough that Lebron got snubbed last year because the Cavs didn’t win enough.  At the time, I was willing to even buy the logic to some extent.  As long as those were the rules, I could get it.  Now this year people are talking about changing the “rules” because Dwyane Wade has had such a monster season?  Now it just comes off like anti-Lebron sentiment, and I am going to type until my fingers fall off in defense of the most valuable member of any basketball team in the world, let alone the NBA.  And yes, it might sound like homerism.  But then again, it is only homerism if it isn’t true, right?  I am looking squarely at you, you homers from Miami.  And I am looking at you Tim Legler.  If you can’t handle the NBA’s news cycle there are plenty of us out here waiting for an opportunity to take your job.

  • Biff

    I read Legler this morning and almost fell off the bowl. How someone could allow their name to be attached to such indefensible garbage is beyond me.

  • ESPNeedsAnEnema

    Couldn’t agree more. I laughed out loud this morning when I read Legler’s expert analysis which comes on the heels of ESPN making a mountain out of the 3 second call molehill from the Magic game while overlooking that with that tough win and a lowly Laker loss the Cavs grabbed the best record in the league…

    But no, ESPN found a better story line in GranSTANd Van Gundy & his whimsical whining. Who cares about winning as long as the NBA’s version of Ron Jeremy blames the officials for the fact that his team was too inept to feed the most dominate big man of his generation when the game was on the line? But I digress…


  • Looks like someone woke up and remembered they had an early AM deadline…

  • tim

    he also said: “The Celtics won big games on the road last season so they are confident they can do it again. ”

    as i recall, the celtics couldnt win on the road in the playoffs against Atlanta, OR cleveland. in fact, the celtics have yet to win a road game in cleveland since the initiation of the “big 3”. true, neither has cleveland yet to win in boston, but im not so sure they are “confident” they can win in cleveland.

    at the end of the day – who cares? luckily this isnt BCS football where analysts have a say on who is #1 or gets to play for #1.

  • CJG

    This isn’t a joke. We all could have Tim Legler’s job and do it better than him. What exactly are the qualifications of being an ESPN reporter if they can’t get analysis as simple as this right?

  • Corey C

    Great post Craig. Im fired up now. In the words of Tony Rizzo this morning “We will have one more ring after this season then you Charles Barkley”
    bring on the haters

  • buu

    a couple of daily dimes ago jon barry was talking about the cavs and the east and basically he was like “the cavs have lebron and mo williams, but who else? they need another scoring option” and i was like “are you serious?”
    first everyone is all “oh lebron doesnt have a supporting cast”, yet that lebron was able to take a rag tag team to the NBA finals and deep into the playoffs. now, when lebron has a legit supporting cast (with guys who can shoot and score) and a “sidekick” in mo williams, it’s still not enough to make the cavs a legit contender to the jon barrys of the world.
    it makes me smile everytime the cavs are mentioned alongside the lakers and boston in terms of being the best in the nba. yet it seems like a good amount of these talking heads just say that because they cant deny the cavs their record and lebron, instead of just acknowledging that they are actually a good team.

  • DP

    More specifically, buu, these guys that say LBJ has NO supporting cast refuse to vote for him for MVP…

    Um, if you’re saying he’s the ONLY player of worth on THE TEAM WITH THE BEST RECORD IN THE LEAGUE, how is he NOT the most “valuable” player?

    It’s Stephen A. Smith-style garbage.

  • kevin

    lebron and mo are the best 2-man scorers in the league, in front of kobe and Pau, what about that?!

    You know what let ’em do the talking and we’ll laugh when our beloved cavs bring a championship to cleveland!! 😀

  • tim

    ill just repeat that its annoying as hell, but let ’em talk. its not the bcs so at the end of the day its all just hot air.
    just win and the rest will take care of itself.

  • S-Dub

    The world is full of haters, and Cleveland, well the whole state of Ohio has A LOT of them. But, it’s those haters that fuel what the Cavs are doing. ESPN as a whole is drinking Hateraide, I say we get 10 more just like them, that way when the sweet smell of victory comes about…. We will just be able laugh and enjoy our drunken party in the streets of Cleveland.

  • S-Dub

    P.S. At least on the broadcast last night they actually mentioned that the Cavs have played more games than ANYONE in the East (maybe league) with injured players. TNT can still get it right (sometimes).

  • buu

    lets not get ahead of ourselves here kevin.

  • Harv 21

    Wait, today we have two Browns’ rumors stories and nothing re the Cavs win over Portland? All right, I’ll start it off (mumble, mumble, …have to do everything myself …)
    Considering just how burned out the Cavs looked last night, that was one of the best wins of the season. Would a Lenney Wilkins-coached team have won that one? No way.
    1) Looks like Joe Smith is getting his legs back.
    2) Looks like Gibson is getting his toe back, or maybe the ole “nail your butt to the bench” trick had its desired effect.
    3) Even on an off night, is Brandon Roy’s game eye candy, or what? He deserves some memorable nick name. Dude is as smooth as Joe DiMaggio in basketball shorts.

  • sambofromOH

    Stephen A. Smith drives me crazy. I wish there was another sports news network so I would have to watch ESPN’s dribble. He just said that the Cavs dont have experience to go deep into the playoffs. Hello! They went to the Finals 2 years ago! Granted the team was remade the next year, but Lebron and Z were both on that team. Ben Wallace has LOTS of postseason experience and they went to the Eastern Conference Finals last year! AHHHHHH!

    Sorry I just had to vent or I might have exploded.

  • JonCole

    I’m with #11 buu…

    Let’s actually win the championship before we shove it in ESPN’s and other hater’s faces.

  • tim

    “S-Dub Says:
    March 20th, 2009 at 1:35 pm
    The world is full of haters, and Cleveland, well the whole state of Ohio has A LOT of them. But, it’s those haters that fuel what the Cavs are doing. ESPN as a whole is drinking Hateraide, I say we get 10 more just like them, that way when the sweet smell of victory comes about…. We will just be able laugh and enjoy our drunken party in the streets of Cleveland.”

    s-dub: so do they just call it “H”??

  • S-Dub

    @Tim: Haha, I mean they can call it what ever they want. As long as they bow down when it’s all said and done. They might still hate us, probably even more.

    @Sambo: You forgot that Boobie and Andy were on that team that went to the finals also. Joe has been around a VERY long time and Wally isn’t afraid of anyone in this league. I like our chances.

  • marco

    Sure, Cavs starters have missed more games, but let’s not go pretending all starters are created equal. Missing Kevin Garnett has just *slightly* more impact than the likes of Wallace & West.

  • @marco- Not arguing that KG isn’t more valuable than Wallace or West or Zydrunas for that matter, but to totally dismiss Ben injury, or Wally’s, or Delonte’s…..not very responsible analysis.

  • Derek

    This is why I love WFNY. I read that ridiculous excuse for an article this morning and thought: “Whaaaaat?” I then proceeded to scroll down to the comments on the article to see if people were as disgusted as I was. But, as is always the case on these articles, the only comments were from about 4 people arguing back and forth about Kobe vs. LeBron.

    Never ceases to amaze me at how misinformed the national media is sometimes!

    Finally, I will reiterate the comment above regarding the Celtics’ ‘big road games’. As I recall, they barely made it to the finals because they couldn’t win on the road. If I’m the Celtics, I’m thinking, “Uh Oh!!!”

  • Chad

    I would argue that the Celts not having KG and the Cavs not having Z in the starting lineup is pretty comparable.

    A Celtics fan sent me this article about their injuries. I found out it funny that this guy went and counted all the games missed from the Celtics “Top 10” guys, but included games that Scalabrine got DNPCD’s in when he wasn’t hurt.

  • nadamb

    the lack of respect this city is tragic. no city deserves a title more.

  • Adam

    I am pretty sure you could have an additional morning piece called “while you were waiting… espn’s spin machine article of the day” or somthin to that effect. you could have a contest to name the column cuz i am just not that creative. nonetheless, i gaurenSHEED you that there is enough questionable material that warrents a daily update. then again, that might be a little too negative for the family friendly (and much apprecitated)

  • @Chad- to call Scalabrine an important role or bench player would be an insult to any basketball fan’s intelligence. Obviously expanded his numbers to include ‘top 10’ so that he could use Scalabrine’s injury numbers and thereby make his point. Perhaps we should throw in Eric Snow’s missed games?

  • Rick, you are brilliant. Eric Snow’s numbers should propel us right to the top. Plus, he has been almost as useful to the Cavs as Scalabrine has been to the Celtics!

  • Hoy

    Its well known around the NBA that Scalabrine makes the best damn breakfast in the NBA, they keep him around for that home cooking on the road. Since hes been out the team just hasn’t gotten off to the right start in the mornings, hence all the problems.

  • D-Train

    wow. legler is awesome.

    check out this gem a bit later on in the very same article.

    “It is more important for Cleveland to have home-court advantage than it is for Boston. Simply put, the Cavaliers haven’t done anything together yet. They haven’t won anything. Like the show “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire,” the lifeline for the Cavaliers would be a home game. The Celtics won big games on the road last season so they are confident they can do it again. ”

    the Celtics didn’t win a road game until round 3.

    and the last time they won a game in cleveland, the celtic fans were still on their rear ends from falling off the bandwagon all those years ago.

    lolz @ legler. this guy can’t handle the fact that he predicted this cavs team which is on pace to win about 65 games, to win a measly 47.

    you screwed up tim. just like you screwed up in the nba.

  • So I guess I’ll be the lone dissenter. Every team has injuries, and the Cavs have had guys banged up all year. But let’s face it, the best two players on this team are Mo Williams and LeBron, and how many games have they missed? I would even go so far as to suggest that AV is our third best player overall (but I could understand if others didn’t feel that way…I really do feel he’s our third most valuable..making me nervous about next year).

    So until LeBron or Mo miss games (or eve AV), I don’t think the Cavaliers could really say that we’ve been truly an injured team. The Cavs might have secured the one-seed even if KG was healthy, but it’s clear at this point that KG being out really killed their chances to compete with the Cavs for the one-seed.