February 4, 2011

Cavs Mailbag: Sessions’ Stats, Draft Options, and Frontcourt Woes

It’s time for another installment of the WFNY Cavs mailbag. Have a question you’d like answered? Shoot me a reply on Twitter and we’ll get it knocked out in the not-so-distant future!

Q: Should Ramon Sessions be apart of Cavs future plans or are his improving #numbers just a case of fools gold (more minutes on a bad team)? – Eric Felkey,@efelkey
A: While Sessions has the tendency to make a few facepalm-inducing plays during certain stretches of a game, he leads the Cavaliers in PER (16.9), is third in true shooting percentage (.528) among those with at least 900 minutes played, is second in win share (1.6) and is producing 107 points per 100 possessions.
The downside to Sessions is obviously his defense and lack of range.  Regardless, I maintain that he is the best pure point guard currently on the Cavaliers roster and is the only player to consistently attack the rim where he is converting at a career-high 57.1 percent.
All that said, I do think that Sessions is a part of the Cavaliers’ future, but as a reserve point guard to provide offense off of the bench and help facilitate Byron Scott’s offense when whomever is the starter is taking a rest.  Of course, if another team shows interest in Sessions’ abilities in the meantime, and the price is right, Chris Grant could consider moving him.  But as it stands now, I foresee Sessions as a member of this team going forward.
Q: How (and from whom) could the Cavs get additional draft picks? Shouldn’t they aim at 2012 NBA Draft rather than 2011? Alex Raffalli, @AlexRaffalli
A: Obviously, the Cavaliers would love to obtain additional lottery selections.  Unfortunately, they have nary a healthy player on their roster who would be considered of value to obtain said selections without taking on a massive contract in return. The Cavs continue to want Charlotte’s first-round pick, and could have a shot with a team like Minnesota, New Jersey, Phoenix or Portland (who has multiple first-rounders).
Don’t forget, the Cavs do have two second-round picks this spring.
To your point about the year in question, by no means do I think the Cavaliers are dead set on obtaining picks for this June.  In fact, it would not surprise me if any deal this year (say Anthony Parker to Chicago, for example) would be for a future draft pick as opposed to one in the upcoming draft.
Also worth mentioning is the fact that Dan Gilbert’s wallet will likely be full of blank checks for Chris Grant in the event that any team wants to sell a first-round pick on draft day.
Q: Any chance the Cavs can trade JJ Hickson and their trade exception to get two top-10 picks? Just dreaming here, but would love to pair Kyrie Irving with Jared Sullinger. – Evan, @Believelander1
Q: As the consecutive losses record looms, are these Cavs truly the worst team in NBA history, (or at least a contender) and is J.J. Hickson still being shopped in trade proposals? Jack, @WayneEmbrysKids
A: First, the Traded Player Exception cannot – under any circumstances – be combined with a player in a trade.  It is merely the act of receiving a player without trading anything in return, ultimately using the space created by the exception.
At this point, acquiring someone like Sullinger could conceivably take a top-seven pick and it will be very tough to pry one of those from another team without a Ray Allen or Kevin Garnett-type player in their prime.  While the team will likely trade any player for the right price, I’ve been told that they are not actively shopping J.J. Hickson as he has shown a willingness to work in Byron Scott’s system and is actually performing well – 13.3 points, 10.8 rebounds and 1.3 blocks through January.
When considering the “worst team in NBA history,” this Cavaliers team will likely get consideration only due to the information age and the fact that all of their lossess have come at one time.  The team started out 7-9 and then was decimated by injuries.  Had they merely went 1-8 and then replicated said pattern over the course of the season, winning a game every two weeks or so, I doubt there would be as much hyperbole-laced fan fare.
Q: What of this Cavs roster do you see on the team around this time next season? (If there is a season) Dan Murphy@danthebeagle
A: I know it is tough to stomach these days, but the Cavaliers have flexibility with their roster which has been lacking over the last four seasons.  I would say that Varejao, Gibson, Jamison, Sessions, Hickson, Christian Eyenga and Manny Harris have all but locked up spots for next season.  Jamison could still be moved between now and the trade deadline (three weeks!), but I can’t see the Cavaliers getting what they would want for him in return.
Mo Williams will obviously have a place if he is not dealt, but if the Cavaliers go small in the draft, he would likely be relocated.  Ultimately, it would be best for both parties given how this season has unfolded for the veteran guard.
AP, Jamario Moon and Leon Powe are expiring contracts that will not be back.  The killer will be the $2 million check that will have to be cut to Ryan Hollins when he undoubtedly picks up his player option for next season.
Q: I think an issue many people haven’t been upset about is how did Chris Grant not sign a legit center in the offseason? Was it really Ryan Hollins? Lucas Reed,@LakeEffectBro
A: Hollins was not signed as he was included in the trade that sent Delonte West and Sebastian Telfair to Minnesota for Ramon Sessions.  The team brought in five centers - including veteran Big Ten big man Greg Stiemsma – for a workout this past summer, but none of them were offered a contract.
When Jawad Williams was cut, the team held a workout with Patrick Ewing Jr, who plays power forward and center for the Sioux Falls Skyforce of the NBDL, but he is all of 6-feet-8-inches and would be dominated by traditional NBA big men.  Of course, there were the confirmed rumors regarding Al Jefferson, but the team’s thoughts on this have been well-documented.
The frontcourt issues could be seen from a mile away over the course of the last two seasons, but there have been a considerable lack of options when it comes to centers.  There is a reason big men like Tony Battie, Etan Thomas and Hollins still have a place on NBA teams; they’re that few and far between.  That said, while he is not a sexy pick, do not count out Enes Kanter as a draft choice if the Cavaliers somehow fall to the third or fourth slot in the lottery.

Cavs Mailbag: Sessions’ Stats, Draft Options, and Frontcourt Woes

Written By:  Scott

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