The Real Reasons Not To Worry About The Cavs

LeBron James Cavs Spurs
Scott Sargent/WFNY

The Cleveland Cavaliers have been playing like crap lately, and with the regular season coming to a close, people are starting to wonder if this skid mark will extend into the playoffs.

Is it effort? Is it simply not showing their hand? Or, is it something much deeper? I think we’re all looking too surface-level on this. We need to put on our tin foil hats and look at the real reasons for the Cavaliers’ recent struggles.

Conspiracy No. 1 – LeBron James is sandbagging.

If there’s anything LeBron hates, it’s Lance Stephenson. If there’s anything else he hates, it’s peace and quiet. The Cavs won a ring. David Blatt is fired. Kevin Love has cemented himself as an integral part of the team. David Griffin has given LeBron the deepest team he’s ever played with. Maybe LeBron was sitting there in his driveway with a glass of wine and a cinnamon roll and realized everything was a little TOO perfect. So, what to do?


If there’s nothing to throw a fit (out) about, he had to create one.

You know that famous story about how Chuck Daly sabotaged the 1992 Dream Team so they’d lose to the college stars and realize they needed more work to reach their peak? Well, guess who is one of the greatest basketball historians in the game?

That’s right, LeBron James.

So maybe he doesn’t help as much on defense when a guy gets beat.

Or starts gambling a bit too much.

Or maybe makes it look like he’s trying really hard, while actually giving up easy lay-ups.

(( Props to Joe Noga for the GIFs ))

And suddenly, now there’s an emergency! Some conflict! Some drama! LeBron is a television producer now, after all. Maybe this was all part of his plan before the happy ending.

Conspiracy No. 2 – The Long Game

When LeBron left Cleveland, he spent the first year in Miami getting booed and heckled. The Heat as a team and LeBron, specifically, were the new villains of the NBA. The only thing more hated than LeBron that year, was LeBron hating the negativity. He’s always wanted to be liked. After a few rings and a return to Cleveland, he’s found that. And the need to be liked has shifted across the country to the rival Golden State Warriors.

The Warriors were the toast of the town. Steph Curry was lauded. The selfless offense, the crushing defense, the shimmies and trash talk. People loved the Warriors. And then, as often happens, they didn’t.

The Cavs punched them in the mouth in the Finals last year, and the tides turned. Fans shifted and started to tire of the Warriors’ act. And as both the series and public perception turned, the Warriors imploded.

They threw hissy fits.

They lashed out.

And then? They lost.

But while the fun of hating a villain normally would dissipate after watching them blow a commanding lead, the Warriors went out and signed the second best player in the league, Kevin Durant. They cemented themselves as the team fans love to hate. And they tried to embrace it in the corniest way possible.

Gang Gang Gang @javalemcgee @stephencurry30 @klaythompson @andre @andersonvarejao18 @pmccaw0 #KD @zazapachulia

A post shared by Draymond Green (@money23green) on

And yet, with the weight of a few million 3-1 jokes, the Warriors never quite got confident in their super villain skin. Suddenly, they started over-reacting to every slight.

They thought TNT was too mean to Javale McGee.

They were angry the Thunder didn’t roll out the red carpet for Durant after he left Oklahoma City for their rival.

LeBron knows this feeling. He spent his first year and a half dealing with it in Miami. He knows how fragile it has made the Warriors’ psyche. LeBron and the Cavaliers are simply playing down expectations. They’re letting the Warriors feast and get over-confident. The ol’ Ali-vs-Foreman rope-a-dope. He’s making sure the Warriors come into the Finals as such overwhelming favorites, that they get in their own heads the second something goes bad. Imagine how many more mouth guards Curry will throw this year! Imagine the number of groins Draymond will attack! And that’s when the Cavaliers swoop in and save the day.

Conspiracy No. 3 – The Switch

The last and maybe most controversial of these conspiracy theories is that the Cavaliers have a switch that they can simply turn on when the playoffs start. Exact details on where they found this switch are hazy, but from what we’ve gathered it was given to the Cavaliers by a mythical creature named Lil Kev from the flat earth planet and is powered mostly by the tears of DeShawn Stevenson. When combined with head coach Ty Lue’s Super Secret Defensive Game Plan (patent pending), The Switch and The Plan combine to create a championship caliber team.


This theory believe the Cavaliers are simply holding back during the regular season. That when push comes to groin kick, they’ll be ready for a Finals match-up of the ages. They are the returning champions. They still have the best player in the world. Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love are playing as well as they ever have in Cavaliers uniforms. The Cavs swapped out Matthew Dellavedova and Timofey Mozgov for Kyle Korver, Deron Williams, Derrick Williams, and maybe even Larry Sanders. There is really no other possible explanation.

There are a lot of people who don’t believe in The Switch. These are probably the same people who question the moon landing or tell their kids Santa doesn’t exist. David Blatt was one of those people, and look at what happened to him. But The Switch is real. In fact, it isn’t even new. We saw it once before; last June, to be exact. And we’ll see it again.