There was always going to be at least one odd man out on the Cleveland Cavaliers roster. With the addition of LeBron James AND Andrew Wiggins this offseason, you could see it coming from a mile away.
The Cavaliers saw that and made their decision well before Dion Waiters irresponsibly, and stupidly, took his grievances to Twitter.
Dion Waiters wants to start, won’t accept role coming off the bench. pic.twitter.com/d0athiNAMr
— NBA Legion (@MySportsLegion) July 15, 2014
Waiters later deleted the tweet.
Cleveland awarded Kyrie Irving with a max contract this offseason, they’re about to reward Waiters will a bench role.
This is how the Cavaliers depth chart, depending on a few changes here and there, configures as we stand (or sit) in July:
|Poing Guard||Kyrie Irving||Matthew Dellavedova|
|Shooting Guard||Andrew Wiggins||Dion Waiters|
|Small Forward||LeBron James||Anthony Bennett||Mike Miller|
|Power Forward||Tristan Thompson||Josh Powell|
|Center||Anderson Varejao||Brendon Haywood|
While Waiters could, if he accepts such role, could become a significant contributor to Championship-caliber team off the bench, there’s a good chance he could eventually lose some of those “winning time” minutes to Mike Miller late in the season. And he knows that.
LeBron James is a huge Miller fan; he isn’t infatuated, at least on the surface, with Waiters.
That could change, just like Waiters opinion on a bench role, but in the short term (at least in LeBron’s eyes) Mike Miller > Dion Waiters. And, at the moment, whatever LeBron wants, he’s going to get.
If LeBron wants Miller to get more minutes than Waiters, he’s going to get more minutes than Waiters.
The Cavs have already made the decision of choosing Andrew Wiggins as their starting shooting guard — he’s listed as a SG on the roster, when he would’ve easily played small forward had the Cavs not signed LeBron James. The proof is in the pudding, as some like to put it.
Waiters wasn’t expected to be in any attempt to land Kevin Love this offseason, however, with these recent events perhaps his name just got added to a hypothetical offer.
If not yet, we may as well draft up the rumors. We know it’s coming. He’s Cleveland’s odd man out.