Apr 1, 2013; Atlanta, GA, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers small forward Luke Walton (4) adjusts his mask during the second half against the Atlanta Hawks at Philips Arena. Hawks won 102-94. Mandatory Credit: Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports

2013 Cleveland Cavaliers Off-Season Player Reviews – Luke Walton


This is the 3rd in our Off-Season Player Reviews. Click here for other reviews and the upcoming schedule.

2012-2013 Season Statistics

PPG: 3.4 RPG: 2.9 APG: 3.3 MPG: 17

A Narrative 2012-2013 Season in Review

It was a slow start for Luke Walton, but as the season progressed and the injuries piled up, Walton became one of the more valuable players for the Cavaliers. His numbers did not do him justice. For several games, Walton would post near-triple double numbers, like 10 points, 7 rebounds and 7 assists. While suffering some minor injuries, he continued to make game saving plays. Walton was a very underrated and important piece this season, and is an unrestricted free agent this summer.

Off-Season Adjustments the Player Needs to Make

While Walton is a polished NBA vet, there aren’t many areas that he can polish off. If he continues to push towards staying in shape and keeping the mindset of being a solid role player, he will have no problem finding a home.

Cavaliers Off-season Options with the Player

Luke Walton grew into one of the biggest leaders on the Cavaliers this season, and he did a great job of leading by example. While being an unrestricted free agent, Cleveland can look to bring Walton back for a small contract.

How the Draft Could Effect the Player’s Standing on the Team

Whether the Cavaliers go with a small forward or center, Walton would find a spot on the team. Injuries happen over the course of the season, and once those hit this past season, Walton’s minutes increased. This is highly possible if he comes back next season, regardless of where the Cavs go in the draft.

How New Coach Mike Brown Changes Things for the Player

The Mike Brown hiring has to make Luke Walton feel good about making a return to Cleveland. Brown will need veterans that can help put in the system he wants. On a team full of young guys, Walton can be a huge veteran leader that Brown can look to for leading on the court and in the locker room.

What the Cavaliers Should Do With the Player (Including Options, Trade, Release or Keep)

The Cavaliers should offer a small contract to Walton. He can be a vocal leader in the locker room and a leader on the court by making the right plays. He can be a guy that Brown can trust and the young guys look up to. If the Cavs are in playoff contention come March, Walton has the playoff experience that can be a huge factor for this young and growing team.

What the Cavaliers Will Do with the Player

The Cavaliers will offer Walton a one or two year contract. They will want him to play a veteran leadership role, and if injuries occur, which they will, and the Cavs are in contention, Walton could be a valued asset to the team.

 

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