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Hoopsworld: Tristan Thompson Primed for Breakout

Could Tristan Thompson spurn the sophomore slump for the sophomore jump? As the Cleveland Cavaliers count down the days until they descend upon Cleveland Clinic Courts, one player who will be the subject of plenty of analysis is the second-year power forward.

Hoopsworld’s Stephen Brotherston lists Thompson as one of his six players who are “primed” for a breakout campagin in 2012-13 due to a combination of development and increased playing time.

“Rookie power forward Tristan Thompson was brought along quietly by the Cavaliers,” writes Brotherston, “playing behind the two-time All-Star Antawn Jamison and in the shadow of first overall pick Kyrie Irving, but over the season, Thompson proved his game was getting better fast. Typical rookie season numbers of 8.2 points and 6.5 rebounds and a block in 23.5 minutes obscured his steadily increasing minutes and production.

The Cavaliers let Jamison leave in free agency to free up minutes for the fourth overall pick in 2011 draft and Thompson will get his chance to prove the Cavaliers’ brass were right when they selected him ahead of draft prospects Jonas Valanciunas and [Bismack] Biyombo. If he can keep developing at his rookie pace, Thompson’s sophomore season will be a breakout year.”

Thompson is one of the many players who were listed as not being guaranteed a starting spot by head coach Byron Scott. He has reportedly spent a lot of off-season time inside the Cavaliers’ training facility, working on his post game as well as his offensive arsenal away from the hoop. How this translates to the floor during his second season in the league remains to be seen.

[Related: C.J. Miles, Andrew Bynum Trade, Backup Quarterbacks, Preseason Browns Injuries]

  • The_Real_Shamrock

    Lets hope the basketball God’s agree!

  • boomhauertjs

    Based on summer league, I’m not expecting much from TT. I just hope Valuncias (sp?) doesn’t become a star center.

  • Vindictive_Pat

    I thought the summer league criticism was without merit, and I do agree with the Hoopsworld fella. Elite athletic ability + hard work = great player… every time. This is where Floyd comes in 🙂

  • Don, aka, @DHass22 on Twitter.

    Don’t mean to be “Debbie Downer”, but JJ Hickson was hyped with an improved jumper after a summer of extensive work. Hopefully this has a happy ending.

  • Based on the Olympics, I’m not expecting much from Valanciunas. Plus his name sucks to try to spell.

  • Vindictive_Pat

    It was improved… not by a ton, but he improved a bit. eFG% of 30.3% on jump shots in ’09-’10. 34.7% in ’10-’11. It was really his defense, turnovers, and general bone-headedness that was the bigger problem.

  • Harv 21

    Almost every player thinks he improved his offensive game in the off-season, but things are a little different in a game than in a gym practice session so we shall see. Ben Wallace is reputed to be a free throw dead-eye at practice.

    Still, really like this kid and hope he worked hard on just one or two moves in the paint rather than trying to add a bunch. One effective pet move wiith a countermove could change the offense a lot.

  • BrownsFanSF

    There were flashes of a couple quick confidant moves in Summer League. I’m interested to see if it comes around at all this year

  • porckchopexpress

    The careers of Valenciowhatsis and Barnes are going to be linked to TT an DW for their entire careers. Even if TT and Waiters become very good pros if either of the other two go on to greatness it is going to hang in the air over Grant for as long as he is here.

  • And we all know how prudent it is to base assumptions on summer league.

  • mgbode

    and how many minutes per game did TT get in summer league?

  • mgbode

    DW = Dion Waiters. I’m so used to referring to Derrick Williams as DW that it took 3 times reading it to let that sink in properly. Doh.

    and you can change those names to whatever player selected after our pick you want. there will always be some revisionist historians will come in and blame the FO for missing on a guy who ended up better than our pick.