There Is Only One Escape

By Tim Naida

“I PERSONALLY GUARANTEE THAT THE CLEVELAND CAVALIERS WILL WIN AN NBA CHAMPIONSHIP BEFORE THE SELF-TITLED FORMER ‘KING’ WINS ONE.”

This was Dan Gilbert’s promise to the fans when Lebron James left. I really believe that with Dan in charge things will get turned around, but I don’t see the 10-46 Cavs winning a championship anytime soon, and they sure as hell aren’t doing it before Lebron gravy trains his.

I realize there are labor issues (I’m so sick and tired of hearing about pro sports and their “labor issues”) that make it hard for the Cavs to make some moves, but I don’t care. This is the NBA, where you can trade bums for perennial all-stars, as long as the numbers work. There’s always something that can be done.

The Cavs post-Lebron are still searching for an identity as an organization. This is an important time for them. They need to build themselves back up, and it’s important that they build a winning culture. Right now, they are heading down a bad road.

The specter of Lebron James will always hang over them. There’s only one escape, for the players and the franchise. Blow. It. Up. The trade deadline is right around the corner. Everyone that was a part of the Lebron James Cavs needs to go. Doesn’t even matter what they get in return. At this point it’s not about who’s coming in; it’s about who’s going out.

The current roster still mostly consists of the Lebron James fan club. I think these guys could play to the level of a 7-or-8 playoff seed many envisioned before the season started. They just don’t care enough to. Minus Lebron, they are simply demoralized. It’s no coincidence that the Cavs’ epic suckitude started with his return on December 2nd.

There are a few guys that could contribute to a winning team (hell, they did in years past), but that’s not the point. There needs to be a fire sale. The sooner we can get Boobie, Varejao, Mo, etc. out of Cleveland the better. Building with these guys here doesn’t make sense. They’ll only contribute to a poisonous atmosphere that currently resides at Quicken Loans Arena. Every remnant of the LBJ era must go, so the franchise can truly start anew.

You wouldn’t believe it if you looked at the standings, but the Cavs have an opportunity closing in on them: the chance to really start over. Let’s just hope that they make the most of it. For the Cavs, it’s time to start taking pennies on the dollar.

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