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Cleveland Cavaliers coach Tyronn Lue knows his team could use a little help. That is why Lue took a long look at the Cavaliers’ summer-league squad this past week in Las Vegas.
“We’re looking for guys that can come in, fit our team, understand how to play the game, make the right play and make the right pass,” Lue told NBA TV, rattling off the checklist every coach carries. “We want some two-way guys who can defend and also play offensively.”
When Lue says “guys,” what he likely means is “youth.” And when it comes to young, hungry players looking for a home, the back-to-back-to-back Eastern Conference intend to search the globe.
Without naming names, Lue said several of those types should emerge from this summer squad and get a real shot in training camp.
“Yeah for sure. We have to fill out our roster,” he told NBA TV. “We gotta get (young) guys into camp, because we can’t run our guys into the ground — especially going deep in the playoffs for three years straight. It’s going to be tough have guys go through the whole thing again. So having 18-20 players going through the practices, and going through (preseason) games will be good for us.”
Here’s more out of Cleveland:
- Top candidates to be invited to camp from the Cavs summer team: Undrafted rookie guard T.J. Williams (Northeastern), swingman Casey Prather (played in Germany last season), and former second-round pick Sir’Dominic Pointer — who displayed the type of “two-way” play Lue seeks. (More on Pointer.)
- Meanwhile, neither point guard Kay Felder nor center Edy Tavares made a compelling case to be sure-bet members of the Cavs’ final roster. They should be in camp, but their spots are hardly guaranteed.
- Former Canton Charge point guard Quinn Cook could also be a candidate for the Cavs down the road. He finished last season with New Orleans and averaged 20 points for the Pelicans’ summer squad in Vegas. He currently has a non-guaranteed deal with the Pelicans.
- Finally, during the interview with NBA TV, Lue touched on the Cavs’ signing of 36-year old point guard Jose Calderon. “He’s a guy I’ve always liked,” Lue said. “He can shoot the basketball, great passer, doesn’t turn the ball over. We know he’s got a little bit of age on him, but he’s very smart and he fits our second unit very well.”