While We’re Waiting… Welcome to Cleveland, Spencer Hawes

While We’re Waiting is a space on the WaitingForNextYear website where we share links every day. We’ve been doing it for about four years or so. Denny Mayo used to be much more amusing with his intros, if you recall. You know the drill: Email us with suggestions at


Spencer Hawes certainly fits offensively, but does it really matter? What’s next? “Anderson Varejao, Tristan Thompson, Tyler Zeller, and Anthony Bennett aren’t gangbusters but hardly lack for talent. Redundancy and inconsistency plague the Cavaliers’s big men, deficiencies owed to youth and health concerns that the presence of Hawes will help mask. His three-point shooting affords Cleveland offensive space the others – despite Varejao’s supreme improvement from mid-range – can’t, and he’s helpful as a passer and rim-protector, too.” [Jack Winter/Hardwood Paroxysm]

This was an amazing line from a close friend of the site. “For all the craziness that could have ensued, a streaking team ended up getting a productive NBA player for a Metro card with an unknown amount of money left on it, two K-cups and some CVS ExtraBucks. 76ers GM Sam Hinkie might be able to red paperclip his way to something tangible down, but Griffin had no interest in doing that himself. At least not right now.” [Martin Rickman/Sports Illustrated]

Do you think David Griffin aced his first trade deadline test? “In my opinion, this was a smart, proactive move by David Griffin to add some depth to the Cavs front court. With Anderson Varejao ailing, the team needed to do something. This wasn’t a groundbreaking move, but it was solid and the Cavs gave up virtually nothing.” [Spencer Davies/Cleveland Sports Talk]

You might have missed this so far, but we’ll catch you up. An amazing collection of Cavs bloggers recently unveiled #CavsRank, the definitive ranking of the all-time best Cavaliers players. Go check out the introduction from Cavs: The Blog’s Kevin Hetrick. At No. 20, there’s Mo Williams and Nate Thurmond, as written by Real Cavs Fans’ Carter Rodriguez. At No. 19, there’s the infamous Craig Ehlo as written by Fear The Sword’s David Zavac. I’ll have the next one up here at WFNY today. Stay tuned.

Phenomenal post at one of the best Browns sites out there about how Mike Pettine adjusted his defensive schemes to fit Buffalo’s personnel. He promises to do the same in Cleveland. [rufio/Dawgs By Nature]

This year’s NFL combine is set to be more boring than ever! But here’s a really interesting guy to watch. “Every player is going to go through this gauntlet of interrogations and physical exams, but it’s difficult to think of anyone who has more riding on his presentation professionally and physically than LSU quarterback Zach Mettenberger. Not only was Mettenberger dismissed from Georgia after pleading guilty to sexual battery, but he’s also been the subject of other unfavorable rumblings since.” [Justin Higdon/]

Mike Fratello on ice! (Not kidding.) []

Still confused about dynamic ticket pricing? Better get used to it. “With the organization’s institution of a dynamic-pricing system — one now used by most Major League Baseball teams — ticket prices tend to rise as the particular game draws closer. So, the Indians are encouraging fans to purchase tickets earlier.” [Zack Meisel/Northeast Ohio Media Group]

I enjoyed this top 14 prospects look for 2014 in the Indians system. “It’s not a top ten system yet, but considering what they were, Cleveland fans have every right to be optimistic, especially with some quality young talent already on the big-league club.” [Chris Crawford/MLB Draft Insider]

Finally, Congressman Tim Ryan and others are pushing for Jim Tressel to be the next president at Youngstown State University. Really. [Connor Kiesel/FOX Sports Ohio]

  • mgbode

    How to undermine an entire article with 2 simple words:

    Hawes is many things and I do think he can be better at defense than he has shown this season, but rim-protector is not something that falls in his wheelhouse.

  • Harv 21

    Stopped looking at those all-time Cavs rankings as soon as I saw that Mike Mitchell, who could do at least one thing on a premier level, is ranked below Ferry (played tons o’games because his albatross contract renedered him untradeable!), Boobie Gibson (hit a boatload of wide open, unguarded jumpers in a playoff game once!), and Mo Williams (dance moves with LeBron!). What’s that – you’re relying on stats? So then what’s with Nate Thurmond at #20, in one and a half limping seasons before the glue factory.

    Harv’s Rule: Don’t be ranking players you only watched as a little tot or only heard about.

  • mgbode

    The Cavs have had a pretty terrible history in terms of top players, but I still cannot believe Mo Williams would make a top20 cut. Or Delonte or Gibson top 25. Heck, it’s sad if 3 seasons of Knight was enough for a near top20 mention.

    But, perhaps they do and I don’t think I want to create a list myself to truly find that one out because that is just plain sad.

  • RGB

    I wonder where Darnell Valentine will rank? 😀

  • Harv 21

    sandwiched between John Bagley and John Morton. Like literally sandwiched: bad pudgy point guards who will eat anything next to them.

  • Harv 21

    agree. The horrible truth is that, except for AC, an aging Lenny Wilkins, Mike Mitchell, Terrell Brandon, LeBron and Kyrie, almost all the excellent players over 40 long years came from one very brief period in the late ’80s.

    Not talking about serviceable to good players (Foots Walker, Brewer, Cleamons, Chones, Zydrunas). Not talking about HOFers. Just talking guys other teams would love to have and pay real value to obtain. Embry got nearly all of those guys just within a few years.

  • John Battle

    Did I hear sandwiches?
    (I know he wasn’t fat but Bags and Morton remind me of watching Battle limp the ball up the court as the conductor of Fratello’s “66 seconds or more” offense)

  • mgbode

    not to mention that a ton of the excellent players we had were for 2-4 years only. ugh.

    the ’91/’92 team was absolutely stacked. best team we have ever had (not sure they would have beat the ’07 Cavs anyway though due to LeBron just being that good).

    I went ahead and did a ranking in the background this morning, here is what I came up with (top20 pretty set, but I’d likely shift some guys around if I gave it more time/thought):

    1. LeBron
    2. Price
    3. Daugherty
    4. Nance
    5. Carr
    6. Hot Rod Williams
    7. Anderson Varejao
    8. Kyrie Irving – just through today, I expect him to keep rising as he plays.
    9. Jim Chones

    10. Brandon
    11. Big-Z
    12. Andre Miller
    13. Tyrone Hill
    14. World B. Free
    15. Campy Russell
    16. Lenny Wilkins – yes, bonus points on coming back to coach those teams.
    17. Mike Mitchell
    18. Ron Harper
    19. Chris Mills – under-rated time here IMO.
    20. Drew Gooden

    Barely missing the cut: Craig Ehlo, Fat Shawn Kemp, Boozer, Hinson, Wes Person, and Danny Ferry

    Others considered: Dick Snyder, Jim Cleamons, Phil Hubbard, Bobby Phills, Michael Cage, Mo Williams, and that one fun year of Weatherspoon.

  • nj0

    What has people so confused about dynamic ticket pricing? The earlier you buy tickets, the cheaper they are. It allows the company to forecast their revenue better and properly staff games. If also creates an incentive to buy tickets early so, if the team collapses, we can still have bottom-of-the-league-but-only-moderately-embarrassing attendance totals.

  • mgbode

    I understand both sides. Alot of people would just like to wait until the last minute and buy a game ticket like they would a movie ticket. Hey, it’s something to do where you can meet up with some friends. You already laid out the team reasons to do it as they do above.

  • Porckchop

    Andre Miller is angry that you overlooked him and he will now shove a hip check a priest attempting to drive the lane in the next church charity game Andre is invited to play in. That is assuming he is ever invited to play in a church charity game, which is unlikely. It is unlikely because there are two things you should never forget about Dr. Dre;
    1. He is a cold blooded ruthless vato.
    2. He is the second greatest Cavalier ever DRAFTED by the organization, and if you disagree he will come to your local court and push you in the back, step on your shoe, pull your jersey, ball tag you on jumpers, and rake your arms going for steals until you apologize.
    Seriously did any of you know that Dre is the first Cavalier to EVER win Player of the Week twice in a season? Do you realize how bereft of history we are.

  • nj0

    I like this part… A complete non-answer of the actual question… So how does the system benefit fans?

    AM: It creates the right value for each game. In the old system, we would be basing our pricing decisions off information that, at best, was outdated. We could be artificially pricing too high. This allows us to have much more current information to keep prices at appropriate levels.

  • porckchop

    Looking at any list of “Cavs greats” reminds me of listing the all time great failed chain restaurants. “Oooohhh, I’m definitely taking East Side Mario’s over Fuddruckers, but how does it stack up to East Side Mario’s?”
    Cavs lists also make me want to listen to the Talking Heads “Nothing but Flowers”, just a celebration of a plastic, temporary, existence.

  • nj0

    How do they compare to Cooperstown?

  • Harv 21

    Drew Gooden over Boozer? Drew Gooden shouldn’t even beat out the guy who was taking a bunch of his minutes, Lonnie Shelton.

    Ron Harper next to Chris Mills and Gooden, and way behind Chones, Z and Tyrone Hill? He was coming on as a star and that trade would have been Cleveland Infamous if he hadn’t immediately shredded his knee with the Clippers and ended up earthbound like Phil Hubbard. And even in the limited minutes he was here, Kevin Johnson, who might yet go to the HOF, has to be mentioned over Cage.

    I’ll take your borderline Wes Person and raise you a Keith Lee. But only if we’re dumpster diving for the Mel Turpin Biggest Flop awards. Ya know, screw this exercise. I don’t want to live in a sports fandom world that brings me to this type of discussion. Where I’m wondering if maybe Dwight Clark did the drafting and FA signings for all 3 teams while he was here.

    Maybe it would be better to identify Prototype Cavs Draft Pick, 1970 – 2013. I’d go maybe Bobby Sura or Chris Mihm. Kind of nowhere pick that makes you go, “Why? Why?”

  • mgbode

    Obviously, I cared more about tenure and what was actually accomplished with the Cavs than you would.

    Boozer was better but only for 2 years (and his rookie year had a ton of rough moments) vs. nearly 4 years for Gooden (and he was already somewhat settled when we got him). Add in a judges negative for the way Boozer left and it’s simple (my rankings, my rules).

    On Harper, I only counted his time in Cleveland. Tenure matters and his first 2 seasons with us were pretty rough overall before his breakout 3rd season. I agree with much of what you wrote, but he basically had 1 very good season with us before we made the dumb trade.

    Love KJ, but he played less than a season and just over 1000min for us. Cage played 4600min over 2 seasons and was an animal.

    Same for Keith Lee. not only did he play just 2000min for the Cavs but he was terrible. Wes did some really good things for the Cavs over 5 seasons and 10000min of play. And, he was much better across the board from Lee (though limited).

    Prototype Cavs Draft Pick = DeJuan Wagner (too small, scoring SG, who ends up having a ton of physical issues as well – good times).

  • Harv 21

    Keith Lee was sarcastic. I hated Wes Person – do we factor in salary v. what he was supposed to be?

    Don’t remember that Harper was all that rough at all his first two seasons; he was scintillating. Like a rookie LeBron he had to learn how/when to use his athleticism, but Lenny said his game understanding was best on the team and he was already defending MJ as well as anyone. He soared and passed and defended.

    Gooden was the single stupidest player I have ever seen. So much so that it completely blocked his considerable athletic skills. I was at a game v. Dallas where Cavs were shorthanded with big men. After a foul call Tractor Traylor (who I meant in my last comment rather than Lonnie Shelton) was so upset he ripped off his jersey – automatic ejection. Einstein Drew was so upset that his teammate was ejected he … ripped off his own jersey. Paul Silas was beside himself. But you can’t fix stupid.

  • mgbode

    I figured Lee was sarcastic but had to be sure 🙂

    you can factor in salary if you would like. I just went with what they did on the court. and, added some +’s for guys I liked and -‘s for guys I didn’t.

    you can’t fix stupid

    completely agree. to be honest, I thought Kemp really deserved that #20 spot, but I couldn’t do it. as this discussion of Gooden has gone on afterwards, I’m glad I put Drew there because it really heightens the awareness of how bad the end of a top20 Cavs list really gets.

  • Steve

    I get that idea, but I think it comes from the same thing as wanting the $7 upper level ticket. Fans got too used to it. I think many don’t realize how ridiculously great it was for them to leave the office on a Friday, and meet up at the game and buy $7 tickets for seats they’d never get near.

    Walk up crowds for the team were pretty dismal except for fireworks/certain bobbleheads, games when you would probably expect fans to be able to plan ahead for.

  • mgbode

    Fans got too used to it

    I don’t get this argument though. It was what the team did, so, yes, it became an expectation. Teams doing things the fans like so they will continue to buy more tickets is good business.

    I cannot help but think there is a way for both sides to be satisfied here. Perhaps offer a very limited amount of gameday walk-up tickets at the reduced rates? Offer them on twitter with a code? Not sure what the best way is, but I think there’s a middle ground that is not being utilized.

  • Steve

    Just because you get a steal of a deal now doesn’t mean you should expect to get a steal of a deal anytime you want. This team just had the fifth lowest prices in the majors, and fans were still complaining about prices.

    And considering how few walks up they got, and that no one ever actually sat in those $7 seats, I’m not sure it was good business for the team. Good business has to cut both ways, it has to help the team just as much as it entices customers. Fans expecting to pay minor league prices for a major league contender is not a precedent they Indians want to set.

    I’d have to think there is some compromise here as well. I think the twitter idea works, but not sure about the limited number of walks ups. Depends how they would have to block off certain areas.

  • mgbode

    I was thinking of it more as a combo-idea.

    Twitter gets you the code. First 100 fans to walk-up and use that code get the $10 seats or whatever it is for that day. Indians control where those seats are.

  • Steve

    OK, i like that.

  • TSM

    Interesting dialogue regarding the tickets. There still has to be a way to get kids to go to lots of games during the summer without spending a lot. This is sort of a loss leader way of creating future adult fans. Hook the kids and not only will they get their parents to take them, but they will be your ticket base going forward. I always hate to see all the empty seats that could be provided to kids cheaply.

  • Steve

    The only promotion I’m aware of for kids across the league is the very rare seniors/kids discounts on weekday day games. Considering how the vast majority of teams across the league try to promote bringing kids to the park, I’d guess they’re noticing price isn’t the primary concern. We mainly see plenty of activities for the kids, suggesting that the primary concern for the parents is being able to keep the child occupied for 3 hours.

    I obviously don’t have the data, but I’d expect that the teams do, and they’re responding as if kids don’t really get hooked at a young age from just watching the game.

  • mgbode

    I’m a father of 3 and 2 of them love to play baseball. Even still, they won’t sit still for more than 3 innings at an actual game. I wish some ballpark would put the kids area where you could still watch the game (like in the RF lower box section).

    Also, if you want the kids begging to go (and you definitely do), then the best way is to offer some meaningless trinket that they need to get the entire set of. But, offer the same one on multiple days in case they miss (because that 2nd time around, they’ll “HAVE” to go). Or, have some type of silly lottery game with collecting scratch cards, etc.

    Really, just copy what McDonald’s does. They are the masters at getting kids to get their parents to go.