We have said this for the better part of month, but even when a Cleveland sports team is successful, fans here still have to worry about something.
So, even though the Cleveland Cavaliers have won 27 of their last 36 games, there is still apprehension.
And of course, the national media doesn’t help the situation.
The latest is the claim that LeBron James is calling the ways and David Blatt simply repeats what James has called, basically saying that the head coach is the puppet of the star player.
The worry is how will that impact the team during the playoffs.
If that doesn’t cause enough angst, then fans are worried about how the wine and gold will match up with in the first round of the playoffs, praying that it isn’t LeBron’s old team, the Miami Heat.
First, the Cavs can knock Miami into the eighth seed with a victory tonight, and secondly, in the two losses to Miami this season, one came on Christmas Day on the road, and the other came after the end of a four game trip in which the Cavaliers won the first three games, two of them vs. Dallas and San Antonio.
And the Heat were rested coming into the contest.
While Miami has several players who have been part of four consecutive trips to The Finals, and therefore would present more of a challenge than a young team making the post season for the first time, it is doubtful the Cavaliers will be extended to a seven game series against Dwyane Wade’s squad.
So, it is very likely the Cavs could open up against the Nets or Celtics in the first round.
The other issue that is driving us crazy is the rest issue. It was funny to hear Wally Szczerbiak, who was on the 2008-09 Cavaliers point to the week off between the second round sweep and the conference finals as a key reason for the loss to Orlando.
This points to what we have said all along, too much rest doesn’t help the players.
The Cavs last played on Sunday, so in the next ten days the wine and gold will play a grand total of three games. Blatt gave the team off on Monday and Tuesday of this week, so they will be well rested tonight, and then have two more days off before their next game on Sunday.
And Blatt can give James, Kyrie Irving, Kevin Love and others all of the contests the last week of the season (they play three games from April 12th-15th), giving everybody sufficient rest heading into the playoffs. They will have the #2 seed clinched by then, so those games will be meaningless.
So, expect to see a lot of Joe Harris, Mike Miller, Brendan Haywood, etc. in those games. Miller, along with Shawn Marion will benefit from the time as they could be called upon in the post-season to play a role.
Until the Cavs lose home court advantage in a playoff season, there is no reason to worry right now. So, relax and enjoy the games.
There will be plenty of time to be nervous in May and June.