Central Notes: James, Wiggins, McMillan, Pistons

LeBron James is falling in the NBA Finals with the Cavaliers team that he built, writes Dave Hyde of The Sun-Sentinel. It was James’ decision to leave Miami for Cleveland two years ago because he saw a franchise with younger talent, Hyde notes, and he pushed for the deal that sent Andrew Wiggins to Minnesota for Kevin Love. James also approved the trade with New York that brought J.R. Smith and supported the hiring of Tyronn Lue, who had no previous experience as a head coach. Cavs managment has given James everything he wanted since his return, Hyde writes, saying it shows the danger of letting a player make too many personnel decisions.

There’s more from the Central Division:

  • James’ desire to have Love as a teammate instead of Wiggins shaped the Cavaliers‘ destiny, contends Shaun Powell of NBA.com. Wiggins’ defensive prowess would have been much more valuable against the Warriors, Powell argues, noting that he is also capable of creating offense with his dribble, in contrast to Love, who has settled into a role as a 3-point shooter since he arrived in Cleveland. Wiggins also could have eased the Cavaliers’ financial burden with a rookie contract instead of the maximum deal that Love got last summer.
  • The Cavs’ bench has been letting them down in the finals, points out Marc Berman of The New York Post. Channing Frye, who was acquired in a February deal with the Magic, only has two points in the series. Iman Shumpert has been held to 11. Love came off the bench to score 11 in Game 4, but the rest of the reserves combined for just four points. Berman says depth will need to be the focus of Cleveland’s offseason moves.
  • New Pacers coach Nate McMillan will keep Dan Burke and Popeye Jones as part of his staff, tweets Scott Agness of Vigilant Sports. Agness says McMillan seems to have decided on a third assistant, but no announcement has been made.
  • The Pistons may concentrate on power forwards with the 18th pick in the draft, writes David Mayo of MLive. Detroit traded that pick to Houston for Donatas Motiejunas in a February deal that was later rescinded, so it’s clear that Pistons management recognizes the need for help at the four spot. Mayo lists Michigan State’s Deyonta Davis, Gonzaga’s Domantas Sabonis, Marquette’s Henry Ellenson and Kansas’ Perry Ellis as four possibilities.
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5 thoughts on “Central Notes: James, Wiggins, McMillan, Pistons

  1. But Wiggins would have never gotten the same opportunity in Cleveland as he has in Minnesota. A huge part of Wiggins’ success is that he had time to develop, no immediate pressure to perform, and gets a lot of touches. If he stayed in Cleveland, he would’ve been expected to develop and contribute in a major role by the end of his first year and would’ve been stuck being the third option behind LeBron and Kyrie.

  2. KnicksCavsFan

    I wonder who writes this dribble? Wiggins may have long term value for the Cavs but one has to ask, on THIS team so desperate for spacing, who replaces the shooting of JR Smith who as a Cleveland Cavs has taken 7 3pters a game and shot over 40%. Compare that to Wiggins who averages 2 3pters a game and only shoots 30% he’s not much of an outside threat.

    Also, take Love out of PF position and who would’ve been PF? Mozgov/Varejao at Center and Tristan at PF?

  3. KnicksCavsFan

    I think ppl are way to harsh on Love. He absolutely needs to work on getting stronger this offseason and find his post game again but 16 pts, 10 rebounds, 2 assists and 36% from behind the stripe is damn good for a guy who’s your 3rd option on a team with two guys who are best with the ball in their hands.

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