My Cleveland Story: Michael Cousins


Cleveland Cavaliers logo (image from

I’d like to start out by saying it’s an honor and a privilege to be writing about the Cleveland Cavaliers for Factory of Sadness. I look forward to sharing news, rumors, and opinions with you, the readers.

Now on to me: My name is Michael Cousins. I live in Jacksonville, Florida, and I am currently a college student majoring in journalism. I’ve had a passion for sports writing for as long as I can remember. In fact, there isn’t a time in my life that I can remember wanting to do anything else. Prior to Factory of Sadness, I wrote and covered the Cavaliers for several other blog sites, including Hoops-Nation. But long before I wrote about them, I rooted for them.

Like with most Cleveland fans, I’ve been on a roller coaster of emotions ever since I put on my first Cavs jersey; I’ve been a part of some very low lows and some rather high highs, but I wouldn’t trade that for anything in the world. Fandom is a glorious thing that brings people from all walks of life together.

You’re probably all wondering how a kid from Jacksonville, Florida became a fan of the Cleveland Cavaliers, right? Well, my fandom started at a very young age. I can remember growing up in a house that did not watch much, if any, basketball. In fact, most of my family ignored the sport if Michael Jordan wasn’t playing; I grew up in a football household, to say the least. The one person I knew that did watch basketball (outside of just Jordan’s Bulls games) was my Uncle on my mothers side. My mothers side of the family lived in Ohio in her younger years, and, as a result, my Uncle followed and rooted for the Cavaliers. I did not live in a city with it’s own basketball team and, since he was a fan, I followed suit. I can remember watching and cheering as a youngster, but, in the end, not winning a whole lot of games.

I am rather young still so it is hard for me to remember too far back, but I still have vivid memories of the 2002-2003 season. The season before LeBron. I can remember watching from afar, cheering, and, for the most part, being disappointed; the Cavs only amassed 17 wins that entire season. A roster compiled of Ricky Davis, DeSagana Diop, and rookies Dajuan Wagner and Carlos Boozer, to name a few, wasn’t exactly destined for greatness. Zydrunas Ilgauskus did put together an All-Star season that year, but that’s another story.

I can remember that season being very hard to watch. I can remember the frustrations of a young kid just wanting to see something positive happen with his favorite team. Little did I know at the time that all of the negativity surrounding that season would lead to one of the biggest positives in the franchise’s history: LeBron James.

I remember the days leading up to the 2003 draft weren’t exactly filled with anxiety and uncertainty. I remember that everyone, including LeBron, knew he was going to be the first pick. It took some of the fun out of it, but the 7 years following the draft were filled with enough fun to make up for that.

LeBeon James dunking in first stint with Cleveland Cavaliers (photo from

Those first 7 years of the LeBron James era were filled with excitement, jubilation, and, unfortunately, in the end, heartache. LeBron left town. Taking with him the fun, the happiness, and, worst of all, the wins. It was dark times once again. The year immediately following LeBron’s departure was almost every bit as bad as the year preceding him; Cavs had a woeful 19-63 record. But, again, that disappointment led to another No. 1 overall draft pick: Kyrie Irving.

For awhile, the excitement surrounding Kyrie was able to mask the despair that came with the losses. We had one of the best, if not the best, young PG’s in all of basketball making plays and getting buckets. It was fun to watch . . . for awhile. But, eventually, as you all know, wins have to add up, and they didn’t.

The Cavaliers missed the playoffs for 4 straight years without LeBron James. It was incredibly difficult to watch, but, over those 4 years, I can honestly say that I missed fewer than 10 games. Whether it was wins or losses, I could not help but tune in, follow along, and cheer wildly for the wine and gold.

Apr 5, 2014; Cleveland, OH, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers guard Kyrie Irving (2) shoots the ball over Charlotte Bobcats guard

Kemba Walker

(15) in overtime at Quicken Loans Arena. Mandatory Credit: David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

This past year was by far the strangest and most peculiar season I’ve ever been a part of as a fan or a writer. Expectations were high and results were very, very underwhelming. The offseason that followed, however, was exactly the opposite. The Cavaliers got the No. 1 overall pick again (in an extraordinarily talented draft), drafted Andrew Wiggins, inked Kyrie Irving to a longterm, max extension, signed this LeBron James fellow, oh, and Yahoo! Sports reported today that Cleveland has a deal in place to acquire Kevin Love (for Andrew Wiggins). The “Season of Huh” has now transitioned into the “Offseason of How?”

As you can see, this is an exciting time to be writing about the Cleveland Cavaliers, and I look forward to sharing my thoughts and opinions with all of you here at Factory of Sadness. The upcoming season, and the years that follow, for that matter, are going to be incredibly fun, and, to be honest, Cleveland fans deserve this. We deserve this. After all, we’re all just fans at heart. I may be older now and I have a much better understanding of the game and the franchise than I did in my adolescent years, but there will always be a part of me that is still that little boy slipping on his Cavaliers jersey for the first time without having any idea about the crazy ride he was about to embark on.

Sit back and enjoy the ride, Cleveland fans.

Cleveland’s new “Big 3” as reported by Yahoo! (photo from