Predicted Finish For Cleveland Cavaliers: 2010-11
ANALYST COMMENT PREDICTIONS
J.A. Adande, ESPN.com | Adande's picksSince 2007 the Cavaliers have lost 13 of the 14 games they've played without LeBron, so I'm afraid to do the projections of them playing 82 games without him.
Chris Broussard, ESPN Mag | Broussard's picksNo team has a bigger chip on its shoulder than the Cavs, who want to show the world they're not the scrubs they're perceived to be. Willpower only gets you so far, though. Eventually, talent wins, and while the Cavs will have their feel-good moments, they just don't have the firepower.
Chad Ford, ESPN.com | Ford's picksWithout LeBron, the Cavs are a hodgepodge collection of solid role players who will struggle to win 30. Can vets like Mo Williams, Anderson Varejao, Ramon Sessions and Antawn Jamison improve now that they're no longer under LeBron's shadow? Can Harrison Barnes save the team next year?
Zach Harper, Daily Dime Live | Harper's picksYou-know-who is gone, and it will be up to the veterans on the team to keep this squad competitive. But being competitive doesn't always translate to wins. Dealing veterans for assets and seeing what J.J. Hickson can give are the first steps in the rebuilding process.
John Hollinger, ESPN.com | Hollinger's picksI feel like I'm pouring salt into an open wound every time I'm asked to assess the 2010-11 Cavs. No, it probably won't be pretty. They'll need everything to go perfectly just to grab an 8-seed. But keep an eye on Ramon Sessions after his liberation from Minnesota.
Tim Legler, ESPN | Legler's picksDespite Dan Gilbert's proclamation that they are going to win a championship before LeBron will, they don't have enough talent to back that up. Mo Williams and Antawn Jamison are the guys they are going to count on, but are they going to be good enough defensively?
Chris Sheridan, ESPN.com | Sheridan's picksFrom 61-21 to 21-61? Yep, I could see that. I know 21 wins may seem high, but have you seen how weak some of the other dregs of the East are? Another piece of fantasy advice: Grab J.J. Hickson, who could have changed the Cavs' fortunes in Game 5 against Boston if Mike Brown had gone to him.
Marc Stein, ESPN.com | Stein's picksI don't see what's left of the Cavaliers sneaking into the playoffs, but I also won't be surprised to see the Cavs exceed the widely morose expectations that lead to the sort of suggestions -- like we just witnessed on the "NBA Tonight Roundtable" -- that 30.5 wins is a suitable over/under.
Michael Wallace, ESPN.com | Wallace's picksThe team LeBron James abandoned won't completely hit rock bottom with his departure, but the tumble will be steep. Think the Jacksons without Michael. The Commodores without Lionel. The Kardashians without Kim. The lakefront without the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
Brian Windhorst, ESPN.com | Windhorst's picksObviously they're still reeling from the loss of LeBron James. Hard to judge them because injuries have made it impossible for Byron Scott to even see what his new team looks like. They could become a fringe playoff team or sink to the very bottom depending on if they use their $14.5 million trade exception to improve.
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