Random dribbles on the Cavaliers after two games in the Las Vegas Summer League.
1. While the numbers haven’t been earth-shattering, rookie forward/center Evan Mobley is offering some hope. Mobley finished Wednesday’s 94-84 win over the Magic with 14 points, though he was inconsistent shooting the ball (5-of-15).
2. From what I’ve seen, I doubt Mobley will put up great stats in Year No. 1 with the Cavs. He’s still very young, having spent just one season at USC. He also looks considerably more comfortable on the perimeter than in the post. That’s not necessarily a bad thing.
3. Mobley made just one field goal over the game’s final 20 minutes, and sometimes looked a little gun-shy. He did attempt three 3-pointers, and even made one. A couple of his baskets were longer-range twos.
4. Oh, and there’s the matter of the two airballs. But that’s not a big deal, either.
5. Cavs summer coach J.J. Outlaw on Mobley: “He was really aggressive in the first half and made plays for others in the second half. He just makes the right basketball play over and over and over again. He’s not so much concerned with what he’s doing (individually) as he is the success of the team and success of the offense.”
6. Actually, if I’m the Cavs, I’m way more focused on what Mobley is doing individually than the success and failures of the summer team. But Outlaw’s point is fair. Mobley is proving to be more than just a guy who heaves up shots. For a 7-footer, he does a nice job of passing and initiating some offense for others.
7. Prediction: Mobley will be even better with better NBA players around him. I think we will see that when he’s lining up alongside the likes of Collin Sexton, Darius Garland, Jarrett Allen and a seemingly improved Isaac Okoro.
8. That’s a nice youg nucelus, but man, the Cavs are gonna be terrible if they don’t find some more capable veterans. Those five and Larry Nance Jr., Ricky Rubio and a declining Kevin Love aren’t going to cut it.
10. Suggs on the Cavs’ big man: “He’s so big in the paint that it makes it hard to see some reads and get passes around him or floaters or whatever it may be. He did a great job of stepping out and knocking down shots. He had the two bad ones in the second half, but in the first half, he was hitting 15-footers, 17-footers, stepping back and hitting a 3. That was big for the run that they had. Super happy for him. Can’t wait to see what he does this year.”
12. Other than Okoro (15 points) and Mobley, forward Lamar Stevens (13 points), and possibly guard Brodric Thomas (11 points) and center Mfiondu Kabengele are the only Cavs summer members who are likely to be in training camp.
13. I do also like what I’ve seen from point guard Jaylen Hands, but I suspect there will be no room for him in Cleveland. He very well could end up elsewhere, though.
14. Former Xavier guard/forward Trevon Bluiett has also had his moments and may be someone the Cavs will consider for the G League’s Charge. Both of Bluiett’s partents are former Marines, and I like his toughness.
15. Final thought on Mobley, from Mobley himself: “I feel like they really love my playmaking ability. I showed that in my college career and I think they really trust me with that. I feel like in the regular season, I’ll probably play a role similar to now. Definitely feel comfortable with the ball in my hands.”