The Cleveland Cavaliers enter a pivotal 2017-18 season with a bit of a new look. The Cavs will introduce three new starters as the season tips off.
Here’s a look at the current Cavs roster and projected starting lineup. Derrick Rose is expected to start in place of an injured Isaiah Thomas. Thomas is likely sidelined until the beginning of 2018 as his hip recovers.
C- Kevin Love, Tristan Thompson, Ante Zizic
PF- Jae Crowder, Jeff Green, Channing Frye
SF- LeBron James, Kyle Korver, Cedi Osman
SG- Dwyane Wade, J.R. Smith, Iman Shumpert, John Holland (Two-Way)
PG- Isaiah Thomas*, Derrick Rose, Jose Calderon, Kay Felder
LeBron James will begin the season playing alongside two veteran guards in the backcourt. James has been reunited with former teammate Dwyane Wade who he teamed up with in Miami to win multiple championships. The Cavs also signed Derrick Rose to a one-year prove-it deal. Rose will fill in as the starting point guard until Thomas is healthy.
Cleveland’s biggest shakeup was sending Kyrie Irving to Boston for Thomas and Jae Crowder. Cavs fans will have to wait to see how Thomas fits in with the rest of Cleveland’s roster, but Crowder is expected to begin the season as a starter. Crowder has long been one of the most underrated players in the NBA. He will take some of the defensive pressure off James.
It is difficult to discuss the Cavs roster without referencing James’ impending free agency. James can opt out of his deal after this season, and rumors started to swirl last season that James could be looking to bolt Cleveland once again. James has been linked with the Los Angeles Lakers, but fans will have to wait until after the season to see what team James commits to long-term.
This season’s Cavs roster is different, but it remains to be seen whether it is better than last year’s NBA Finals squad.