Red Right 88

Cleveland sports fan and sports writer

Location: Cleveland, Ohio, United States

quit my job decided to drive west

Friday, November 28, 2008

Cavs looking good

Tired of the soap opera that the Browns have become? Well the other soap opera in town is threatening to have its drama made irrelevant by its play on the court. While New York City and the National Media are making plans about LeBron and the summer of 2010, the Cavs are quickly becoming a major force in the NBA.

One of the biggest complaints with the Cavs over the last few seasons is how hard they made things on themselves. How many games did they either lose to terrible teams or at the every least get taken down to the wire? LeBron had to put up monster minutes because Mike Brown had no choice. Well if you have not been paying attention the Cavs are 13-3 and 9-0 at home. The last three games- they played three chump teams and blew out all three. The three losses were all on the road to Boston, New Orleans and Detroit and there is no shame there.

Tomorrow they play their fourth game in five minutes but fatigue isn't a worry because LeBron played 30, 17 and 30 minutes. The bench has played a ton and were game changers in New York. I can't remember the Cavs ever winning three blowouts in a row. The scary thing is they aren't even close to being where they need to be on defense yet. This team if it stays healthy is one of the best in the NBA and will be tough out in the playoffs.

The pieces are starting to fall in place around LeBron. The talent level is so much higher at every position from the 2007 team that made the finals. And Ferry has expiring contracts to make another move at the deadline.

The team is hitting on all cylinders so all the talk that the LeBron rumors are hurting the team sound silly. In face for the first time since LeBron has joined the team, he not only has talented teammates but he has teammates who are good teammates. The large egos of Ricky Davis and Larry Hughes are gone. The brain deadness of Drew Gooden is gone. You can tell the bench loves and appreciates being on a team with a superstar. Ben Wallace, Z, Mo Williams and Delonte West are the perfect group for LeBron. They will all work hard and not care about credit.

Let everyone speculate all they want. If the Cavs win on the floor, everything will take care of themselves.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Fates sealed

Romeo Crennel. Derek Anderson. Phil Savage.

All three of their fates were sealed today. All three have to lose their jobs. And if Randy Lerner is not going to pull the trigger, he has to sell the team. A teetering fan base got shoved over a cliff today.

This team lacks leadership and discipline. The lines of communication aren't open. Players are not giving their all. It starts with Phil Savage. He has done some good work on rebuilding the roster but the Winslow saga and the email exchange are prime examples of Savage's biggest weakness. He is not a leader. He is not a communicator. It is why he was almost let go after one season. The fans saved his job then. It should not be saved now.

Crennel's sins are different. For all his faults, it has been said that at least his players love him and believe in him. Well that is no longer true. He lost one of his most professional players in Jamal Lewis a few weeks ago. It has been said that one of Tom Coughlin's strengths as a coach is that he coaches the top third of his roster. If you believe players fit in three categories. There are the leaders, there are the disgruntled and there are all of the guys in the middle. By making his leaders happy, Coughlin wins over the middle and the disgruntled get left behind. If you coach to the disgruntled, the middle gets lost and joins the bottom instead of the top. By coddling Braylon Edwards, Crennel has lost his middle. Edwards has talent. But his lack of concentration and effort have helped sabotage this season. Quinn's second pick was Edwards fault. Quinn got benched and Edwards got every pass almost the rest of the game from Anderson.

I am not going to say that Quinn played awesome but you didn't see the confusion and the mistakes when he was in there. I don't know if it is just coincidence or he has a leadership style that is different but things are smoother when he is in the huddle. he is the quarterback of the future and the present. Anderson has a gun but he is not a leader. He does not inspire. Crennel in a panic went with Anderson and he got burned.

The problem is now what. What if Cowher got more loyalty to the Rooney family than Lerner has money? I don't know. But what is obvious is that Crennel, Anderson and Savage have left Lerner with no choice but to blow this up.

The three have made the cardinal sin. They have lost the fans.