World Championship Cavaliers Back for New Season
The Cleveland Cavaliers met with the press today as they start training camp. Reporters asked about recent athlete protests against police brutality. Team leader LeBron James has said athletes should speak up about current issues. He noted today (MON) that his 12 year old son will be driving a car in 4 years and he worries about him being stopped by police..
“You tell your kids that if you just [comply] and listen to the police that they will be respectful and things will work itself out. And you see these videos that continue to come out. It's a scary situation that if my son calls me and says he’s been pulled over that I’m not all that confident that things are going to go well and my son is going to return home.”
Cavs General Manager David Griffin said people should worry less about the protest and pay attention to what spawned the protests. Griffin says he’s honored that the NBA is working with the players union to “bring meaningful change and impact the issue. “
Looking ahead to the new season, Coach Tyronn Lue says he is most happy that the team is starting off healthy. Last year at this time Kyrie Irving was still recovering from knee surgery and Iman Shumpert injured his wrist in the very first practice.
Irving’s last minute 3 point shot in Game 7 helped give Cleveland the victory. It gives him chills to watch tape of the game
“Man, my stomach dropping, knowing the basket is going to go in but knowing exactly how I felt emotionally during the game.”
Still, Irving and James both say they haven’t really had the time since to let it all sink in. After the playoffs Irving went right on to the Olympic team
“Longest year of my life.”
Players expect their emotions will kick in when they get their rings and the banner is hung in Quicken Loans arena.
It will be a slightly different team now. Griffin announced that Mo Williams has retired.
The Cavs add veteran center Chris "Birdman" Andersen from the Heat and forward Mike Dunleavy of the Bulls. Young guards Jordan McCrae and Kay Felder hope to back up Irving.
JR Smith is still in contract negotiations but James predicts that will be resolved.
36 year old Richard Jefferson postponed his retirement for one more year.
“When you get a little older it’s not about getting better; it’s not about improving your skills set. It’s about slowing the decay.”
Jefferson says after the team won Game 7 against such long odds it taught the team that they are capable of winning any game. The Cavs tip off the regular season October 25th at home.