Player-by-player look at Cleveland's camp roster as team tips off 2012-13 with media day.
By SAM AMICOFS Ohio
Cavaliers meet the press for Monday’s media day, and here is what we know:
They plan to be young, exciting and full of surprises.
Whether or not that’s enough for the playoffs is anyone’s guess. But Monday is the starting point, a time when players and coaches brim with confidence and talk a good game. By this time next week (and especially, the end of November), we’ll have a better idea of what type of hand they’ve actually been dealt.
Until then, here’s a quick look at the training camp roster:
Kevin Anderson, 6-0, PG: With Kyrie Irving, Donald Sloan and Jeremy Pargo in front of him, if he makes the team, it likely means something’s gone wrong.
Kelenna Azuibuke, 6-5, SG: Injuries have limited him to 12 games since 2009. If he’s healthy, he can really stroke it and will be an underrated addition.
Omri Casspi, 6-9, SF: Disappointed in first year with team, often looking lost and like he lacked confidence.
Cavs still holding out hope.
Michael Eric, 6-11, F/C: Showed promise defensively during summer league with his timing and hustle.
Alonzo Gee, 6-6, G/F: Among league leaders in highlight-worthy dunks, can also defend opponent’s best wing when inspired. Needs to become a more consistent scorer this year.
Daniel Gibson, 6-2, G: Versatile guard must stay healthy and rediscover his perimeter shot. Best backcourt defender, ready for leadership role.
Luke Harangody, 6-8, SF: Plays an often unappreciated elbows-out, feet-on-the-floor type of game. Always active and can hit outside shot.
Kyrie Irving, 6-3, PG: Reigning rookie of the year practically unstoppable offensively, can penetrate, create and score. Goal is to improve his defense.
Kevin Jones, 6-8, F: Arguably best player to go undrafted. Brings some needed toughness and reminds one scout of “a poor man’s David West (Pacers).”
Jon Leuer, 6-10, F: Big man who can bury jumpers. But is there more to him than that?
C.J. Miles, 6-6, G/F: Both Cavs and Miles banking on him showing explosiveness and scoring aptitude on more regular basis. Fresh start may do the trick.
Jeremy Pargo, 6-2, PG: Cavs like his leadership tendencies and aggressiveness. His battle with Donald Sloan to back up Irving the key camp competition.
Samardo Samuels, 6-9, PF: Slimmed down but just as aggressive inside during summer league. Make-or-break season for ex-national prep player of year.
Donald Sloan, 6-3, PG: Steady, tough and driven. Don’t mess with him; he can box. Jumper needs work.
Tristan Thompson, 6-9, F/C: If he can give Cavs 13 points and 10 boards a game, it’s a successful year. Already a very promising defender and finisher.
Anderson Varejao, 6-11, F/C: Freak injuries or not, needs to stay healthy for Cavs to have any shot at postseason. Ultimate do-a-little-of-everything guy just turned 30.
Dion Waiters, 6-4, SG: Fourth overall draft pick is one tough hombre who's known for creativity on offense and scoring potential. Has long ways to go as NBA defender.
Luke Walton, 6-8, F: Ball just seems to move better when he’s in a game. Body abandoning him.
Tyler Zeller, 7-0, C: Outstanding athlete who runs the court and can put the ball on the floor and finish. Fundamentally sound, hard worker; just needs to learn NBA game.
Byron Scott: Master motivator who still doesn’t get enough credit for his Xs and Os. Patient, yet far from a pushover. Right man to lead young team such as Cavs.
Assistants: Paul Pressey, Jamahl Mosley, Nate Tibbetts, Joe Prunty.