Cavaliers Rookie Spotlight
The status of the Cavs rookies is a bit different than it was last week. In some areas, it's for the better, and in others, not so good. Time to break down where all four of them stand and how the next week should project for them.
With knee issues still very relevant, we haven't seen Dylan Windler appear in a game for several weeks now. He hasn't been noticeable at the recent games on the bench, so he may very well be completing some rehab away from the team and watching the games from his couch.
Wishing Windler all the best.
It's been made pretty clear that regardless of who takes the floor for the Cavs, Brodric Thomas won't be getting too many minutes the rest of the way. He had his opportunity a few weeks back and made sure to take full advantage of it. He got after it on the defensive end while proving to be a viable scoring option.
It really makes you wonder how a guy with his talent didn't get picked up by any Division-I school over the course of his time at Truman State. Now only D-I athletes can make the NBA, but Thomas's journey has been an impressive one.
Cleveland was wise to pick him up, and maybe the best is still yet to come.
Simply looking at Lamar Steven's overall stats will provide no justice. He has been making big plays in every game he has played minutes in, whether it's finishing through contact at the rim or coming up with a key play on the defensive end of the floor. He's making a number of those, whether a block or steal, or just being a brick wall that the offensive player cannot move.
It has been a very good year for the undrafted rookie out of Penn State. Stevens will likely, barring the unforeseen, pick up a guaranteed contract at the end of the season, and occupy a regular roster spot in 2021-22. And he will always be able to find a way to earn at least a few minutes here and there for his efforts.
For the first three quarters against the Pelicans, Isaac Okoro could not be stopped. While he was playing his usual tough brand of defense, he was also scoring the ball at a clip we had not previously seen. Okoro picked up two early fouls, but as soon as he re-entered the game, he found his offensive touch.
He shot 6-10, including 2-4 from three. He also sunk five three throws, looking very comfortable at the charity stripe each time that he stepped up there. He finished just shy of the first 20-point outing of his young career, as he threw 19 points on the board.
As the season winds on, Okoro will be a player that this team can rely on for 10-15 points. The same was not true when the year began, so that's improvement right there. The more comfortable he is shooting the ball, the better his future will look.
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