In the second half of his two-part recap of the NBA off-season, Grantland.com’s Bill Simmons calls the Cleveland Cavaliers’ summer the most “confusingly entertaining” offseason plan in the league. From the NBA Draft to their free agency plans, Simmons enters the 2013-14 season wondering what, exactly, the Cavaliers have in store.
One of the movie’s most confusingly entertaining scenes (Jack and the Duke pretending to be FBI agents and fleecing Red out of his $20 bills)5 goes to our most confusingly entertaining offseason plan: basically, everything the Cavs just did. They went into this summer with buttloads of cap space, the no. 1 overall pick and three more draft picks (no. 19, no. 31 and no. 33) … and somehow ended up with a second power forward who doubled as the most shocking no. 1 overall pick since Kwame Brown (Anthony Bennett); a slightly overpaid third guard (Jarrett Jack); someone with a good chance to be Yaroslav Korolev 2.0 (Sergey Karasev); the immortal Earl Clark; and The Artist Formerly Known As Bynum. Yikes. Although I guess I should thank them for making me audibly gasp on live television with that Bennett pick — I feel like I’m a part of history! My high-pitched gasp will live on and on and on!
What should they have done? I’m confining my Wannabe GM rants to the footnotes. Just know that, one month ago, I would have picked their roster over any other lottery team’s roster. Not anymore.
In the footnotes, Simmons sticks to his draft-night guns and says the Cavaliers should have selected Indiana’s Victor Oladipo with the first-overall pick while trading the 19th pick to Houston for Thomas Robinson. He would not have signed Jarrett Jack (who is essentially the consensus top pick-up for the Cavaliers this off-season), preferring to use the second-round picks on an off-guard. He also mentioned a route that would completely bust all future salary cap space that included signing forward Paul Millsap (who would also be a “second power forward”) and trading for either Robin Lopez, Pau Gasol or Nikola Pekovic.Simmons added that Andrew Bynum, Cleveland’s ultimate acquisition, “lingered on the market for weeks like a foreclosed house.”