Sloan, Harris get chance with Gibson out
Sloan, Harris get chance with Gibson out
The Cavaliers will have to adjust to playing without guard Daniel Gibson for likely the rest of the season. Not that he was having a great season. Just the opposite. His trusty jump shot had abandoned him for much of the season.
Backup guards Donald Sloan and Manny Harris have been forced into major minutes. Both of them have left observers wanting more.
Harris continues to make mistakes. He still can't handle the ball at the NBA level. He does score, so for now that will have to do.
Guard Anthony Parker could start ramping down as far as minutes go, since he won't be back next year. This is expected to be his last season with the Cavs, and most likely in the NBA.
Sloan, Harris and forward-center Samardo Samuels are all signed to non-guaranteed contracts for next year. It's a recent trend by the Cavs, who want to preserve their flexibility moving forward. That way, if things don't work out, the Cavs can easily move on.
"It's a perfect situation," Sloan said. "You can't ask for a better one. What I do with it will tell what I do next year. You live in the moment right now.
"You pray for better things in the future. Right now, I have a golden opportunity to make something happen for next year."
The plan is for Sloan to play between 12-15 minutes a game behind Kyrie Irving.
The Cavs seem to crumble as soon as Irving leaves the court. Sloan had two points and two assists in 11 minutes on Wednesday in the Cavs' 87-75 loss to Detroit. Harris added nine points, but was just 3-of-10 from the field.
Cleveland will look to end its five-game losing streak when it hosts Milwaukee on Friday.
Irving even impresses all-time great
--Radio shock jock Howard Stern attended a recent Cavs-Knicks game at Madison Square Garden. Stern, who hosts a popular talk show on Sirius XM Radio, freely admits that he knows little about sports. When he got to his courtside seat, he found himself sitting next to former Los Angeles Lakers star Magic Johnson. Being based in New York City, Stern was well aware of the phenomenon surrounding Knicks guard Jeremy Lin. He said on his show he tried chatting about Lin with Johnson, a Hall of Fame point guard. He said all Johnson wanted to talk about was Cavs guard Kyrie Irving. That's been the case in every city the Cavs play. Just about everyone loves Irving.
--The Cavs are currently playing with a 14-man roster. Coach Byron Scott said he hasn't talked to Cavs general manager Chris Grant about a possible 15th player. They had just 11 players available on Wednesday in the 87-75 loss to Detroit. Guard Daniel Gibson is probably done for the year, and center Anderson Varejao isn't ready to return from a broken wrist. Also, forward Luke Harangody remains in the D-League.
QUOTE TO NOTE: "He doesn't play like a rookie. I heard he turned 20 years old (Friday). That's frightening because I have suits older than he is." -- Suns coach Alvin Gentry on Cavs guard Kyrie Irving.
--G Kyrie Irving, F-C Tristan Thompson, G Daniel Gibson, F Antawn Jamison and F-C Samardo Samuels all played in the McDonald's All-American Game as high school phenoms. The latest edition of the game was Wednesday in Chicago.
--F Luke Walton's future with the Cavs is difficult to predict. Yes, the 31-year-old is under contract for $6.1 million for next season. But the Cavs keep getting younger and might select a small forward in the 2012 NBA draft. There's been no talk of the Cavs buying out Walton, who might be reluctant to take anything less than he's owed. On the open market, he's a minimum player -- at best -- at this stage of his career.
--F-C Samardo Samuels fell asleep last weekend while his beloved Louisville Cardinals were playing Florida in the NCAA tournament. When he dozed off, Louisville was trailing by double figures. They closed the game on a staggering 23-8 run to knock off the Gators 72-68. "I woke up for the last five minutes," Samuels said. "I can't believe they are going to the Final Four. That would be an unbelievable experience." Samuels said he played with four or five of the guys still on the team. He said it was a good experience playing for coach Rick Pitino at Louisville. "He's a tough dude," he said.
--C Anderson Varejao (broken right wrist) was injured in the Milwaukee game on Feb. 10. He's expected to return to practice the first week of April.
--G Daniel Gibson (torn tendon in left foot) is likely done for the season after a recent MRI revealed a tear. He was injured against New Jersey on March 19.
--Point guard Kyrie Irving
--Shooting guard Anthony Parker
--Small forward Alonzo Gee
--Power forward Antawn Jamison
--Center Tristan Thompson
--Guard Donald Sloan
--Guard Manny Harris
--Forward Omri Casspi
--Center Samardo Samuels