The Athletic named just two Cavs’ players on their Top 125.
The Atheltic named their top 125 players in the NBA and only selected two players from the Cavaliers. Those two players were Collin Sexton and Jarrett Allen, ranked in their “Tier 5” category, which is #80-#125.
Some players selected for Tier 4 ahead of Sexton and Allen included Caris LeVert, Derrick Rose, Al Horford, Brook Lopez, DeAndre Ayton, Jusuf Nurkic, and Jonas Valanciunas. Some of those players make sense to be higher than Sexton and Allen, and others surely don’t.
On one hand, you kinda get why the Cavs only have two selections among the Top 125. They’ve had three straight losing seasons and have shown very little progress. They’ve also been hard to nail down as far as a direction. With multiple rumors about where they’re going as a franchise, you can completely understand why some outlets are hesitant to give respect to the team.
The Cavs need to start winning if they want to be better represented
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Yet, to leave off guys like Larry Nance and Ricky Rubio? Sexton and Allen were no-brainers, but Nance was a sought-after piece at the trade deadline and Rubio just showed what he’s capable of in the Olympics.
It all comes down to a simple fact; if the Cavs want more representation on these lists, they need to start winning. Who doesn’t love guys like Nance, Rubio, or Darius Garland? They have a lot of talent and upside. Yet, if you’re a team that needs two full seasons to tally 40 wins, then you really don’t deserve much respect from the national media.
We all want guys like Nance to gain recognition from the national media but if the franchise as a whole can’t actually win the games needed, then there really shouldn’t be any surprise when guys who may deserve a spot on lists like this to be left.