2021 Cleveland Cavaliers Season Review

2021 Cleveland Cavaliers Season Review

Ryan Knupple
3 years ago
3 min read

Well, well. Here we are, at the backend of the month of May. That means that the NBA’s play-in tournament is underway, and the Cavaliers did not make the cut. But don’t cry because the season is over. Smile because it happened.

There were highs and lows, ups and downs. A 3-0 start to open the year. The acquisition of Jarrett Allen. The game-winning dunk by Lamar Stevens. There were some great days. There were multiple 10-game losing skids. Injuries plagued things. But, there is plenty to be thankful for.

The Development of the Backcourt

Coming into the season, it was unclear if Darius Garland and Collin Sexton could co-exist. And to some fans, it still remains to be seen. But the answer is pretty clear, and some people just choose to spread false propaganda. The duo is incredible when on the floor together, and the offense really thrives when it’s the case.

SexLand, as they have been dubbed, is a dynamic 1-2 punch. Garland’s ability to penetrate and find the open man makes everybody better. The talent of Sexton to score the ball in bunches gives the team a full-time No. 1 option. When playing together, they play well off one another and can clearly exist at the same time.

There is still some work to be done on the defensive side of things, but they’re good enough. They had a few nice winning streaks in there. They can exist together, both in the starting lineup.

Hidden Gems Emerged

If not for Kevin Love’s long injury spells this year, we would know nothing of Dean Wade’s ability. Though he could not deliver big numbers every night, Wade proved his skill by knocking down threes at a high clip and turning in some incredible performances.

He had hardly seen the floor during his rookie year and the first half of his second campaign. He joined the starting lineup over the final week before the All-Star Break, and the Cavs quickly snapped a 10-game losing streak by winning four games in a row. He’s got a nice future ahead of him.

An undrafted rookie Lamar Stevens showed a lot of promising signs throughout the year. He, unfortunately, had to sit for the final few weeks with a concussion, but he had some great performances. Stevens had a game-winning dunk against Atlanta. He had a double-double in less than 20 minutes against the Spurs. And his defense was terrific.

Kevin Love is No Longer Welcome Here

Even though every one of his blowups ends with apologies both ways, it’s pretty clear Kevin Love’s time in Cleveland is up. He helped the team win a title. He signed a deal to stick around as soon as LeBron took off for Hollywood. But, the partnership’s best days are finished.

He’s been lazy at times and has called out teammates. Love has also publicly expressed interest in playing for Portland. There is a lot going on with him that has nothing to do with his impact and talent on the floor. And that game against Toronto where he clearly just gave up cannot be forgotten, nor forgiven.

It was a great run for him as a Cav. But it would be in everyone’s best interest if they can trade him.

In All

The Cavs went 22-50 this year. They hope to obtain a top-5 draft pick, and if they’re lucky, win the lottery. Better days are certainly ahead.

Share article on: