Cavs’ Supersized Frontcourt Emerges as Contenders in the NBA

The Cleveland Cavaliers have been one of the most surprising teams in the NBA this season. After finishing last in the Eastern Conference in 2021-22, they have climbed to the fourth spot with a 41-28 record as of April 14, 2023. They have also won 10 of their last 12 games, including impressive victories over the Nets, Bucks, and Suns.

One of the main reasons for their turnaround is their unconventional lineup that features three big men: Jarrett Allen, Evan Mobley, and Lauri Markkanen.

The trio has formed a formidable frontcourt that has given opponents fits on both ends of the floor. They have combined to average 49.7 points, 29.8 rebounds, 6.4 blocks, and 4.6 assists per game, while shooting 53.2% from the field and 38.7% from three-point range.

The Cavs have embraced their size advantage and have played a physical and aggressive style of basketball. They have dominated the paint, ranking first in the league in points in the paint (54.6 per game), second in rebounds (47.9 per game), and third in blocks (6.5 per game).

They have also been effective in protecting the rim, holding opponents to 43.8% shooting from within five feet of the basket, the lowest mark in the league.

Cavs' Supersized Frontcourt Emerges as Contenders in the NBA

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On offense, the Cavs have utilized their big men in various ways. Allen is the anchor of the pick-and-roll game, setting hard screens and rolling to the rim with force. He is also a reliable finisher, shooting 67.8% from the field and leading the league in dunks (189).

Mobley is the most versatile of the three, capable of scoring from all levels. He can post up, face up, shoot from mid-range or beyond the arc, and put the ball on the floor. He is also a skilled passer, averaging 3.2 assists per game and finding his teammates with smart reads.

Markkanen is the floor spacer, stretching the defense with his shooting ability. He is shooting 40.9% from three-point range on 6.1 attempts per game and has made at least one triple in 51 consecutive games.

On defense, the Cavs have used their length and athleticism to disrupt and contest shots. Allen is the rim protector, averaging a career-high 2.1 blocks per game and ranking fourth in the league in defensive rating (101.4).

Mobley is the switchable defender, able to guard multiple positions and cover ground with his quickness and wingspan. He is averaging 1.8 blocks and 1.1 steals per game and has shown flashes of being a defensive anchor for years to come.

Markkanen is the weak link of the three, but he has improved his effort and positioning on that end. He is averaging a career-high 0.9 blocks per game and has held his own against some of the best power forwards in the league.

The Cavs’ supersized frontcourt has been a key factor in their success this season. They have proven that they can coexist and complement each other on both ends of the floor.

They have also shown that they can adapt to different matchups and situations, playing big or small depending on the opponent. They have given the Cavs a unique identity and a competitive edge that has made them one of the most intriguing teams to watch in the NBA.

Final Thoughts: Cavs’ Supersized Frontcourt Emerges as Contenders

The Cleveland Cavaliers have defied expectations this season with their unconventional lineup featuring three big men. Jarrett Allen, Evan Mobley, and Lauri Markkanen have formed a formidable frontcourt that has given opponents fits on both ends of the floor.

Their dominance in the paint, rebounding, and shot-blocking has been key to the Cavs’ success, as well as their ability to use their size advantage to score inside and outside.

Jarrett Allen has been the anchor of the pick-and-roll game, using his size and athleticism to finish at the rim with authority. Evan Mobley, the most versatile of the three, has shown flashes of stardom with his scoring, passing, and defense.

Lauri Markkanen, the floor spacer, has provided the Cavs with much-needed three-point shooting and improved effort on defense.

The Cavs’ success this season is not only due to their frontcourt, but also their depth and chemistry. Players like Darius Garland, Collin Sexton, and Kevin Love have stepped up in different ways, and the team has embraced a physical and aggressive style of basketball that has helped them win close games and overcome adversity.

As the playoffs approach, the Cavs will face tougher competition and will need to continue to adapt and improve. However, their supersized frontcourt has already proven to be a competitive edge and a unique identity that has made them one of the most intriguing teams to watch in the NBA.

Overall, the Cavs’ emergence as contenders with their supersized frontcourt is a testament to the importance of versatility, chemistry, and strategy in the modern NBA.

The league is constantly evolving, and teams that can adapt and innovate will have the best chance of success. The Cavs have shown that size and skill can coexist and complement each other, and that sometimes, the best way to stand out is to do something different.