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3 Reasons Cavaliers Will Take Big Step Forward In 2022-23 Season

Evan Mobley on court
(Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images)

 

The Cleveland Cavaliers were one of the best stories of the 2021-22 NBA season.

Going into the season, not many folks outside of Cleveland gave the team a chance to make any noise in the Eastern Conference, but the Cavs certainly proved the doubters wrong.

Although injuries ultimately threw a wrench into the team’s special year and caused it to end in the play-in tournament, Cleveland was one of the most exciting teams in the league when healthy.

Will the 2022-23 season be even more special for the Cavs?

That certainly seems like a distinct possibility.

Here’s why.

 

3. No Shortage Of Motivation 

As mentioned, the Cavs saw their 2021-22 season end in the play-in tournament.

The club certainly had its sights set on making the playoffs, but injuries ripped that goal away.

For a while, it seemed like Cleveland was a lock to make the playoffs, and some fans thought the team even had a chance to earn home-court advantage in a potential first-round series.

But after being 35-21 on Feb. 11, the Cavs lost 17 of their final 26 regular season games, landing them in the play-in.

There, they had two chances to win one game and make the playoffs, but they lost to the Brooklyn Nets and Atlanta Hawks and were eliminated.

Obviously, it was a heartbreaking collapse.

But that type of setback often makes a team hungrier to get the job done in the following season, and given the culture that J.B. Bickerstaff has created in Cleveland, it seems like a sure thing that the Cavs will be eager to do just that.

 

2. Another Year Of Development

The Cavs are a very young team.

22-year-old Darius Garland earned his first All-Star selection last season, and so did 24-year-old Jarrett Allen.

Evan Mobley, meanwhile, had an outstanding rookie season, and he just turned 21.

All of these players still have plenty of room to improve, and they likely have their best basketball ahead of them.

It’s very possible that all three players will take major leaps in the 2022-23 season and further solidify themselves as young stars.

Mobley in particular seems primed to make a jump in his second season.

If that happens, the league will have a problem on its hands, as the Cavs are set to have the entire Garland-Allen-Mobley trio on their roster for years to come.

 

1. No More Injury Bug (Hopefully)

The Cavs’ injury luck has to improve in the 2022-23 season, right?

After all, it’s hard to even imagine how the injury bug could possibly hit Cleveland harder than it did in the 2021-22 campaign.

The team lost Collin Sexton and Ricky Rubio to season-ending injuries.

Caris LeVert missed some key games for the Cavs after he was traded to them in February.

Jarrett Allen missed the final 18 games of the regular season, which played a key role in the team’s collapse.

And some other key players missed time at certain points as well.

It was a perfect storm, and it almost certainly won’t happen again.

If the injury bug doesn’t get in the way, the Cavs will likely be a very fun team to watch in the 2022-23 season.




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