NBA Future Power Rankings 1. Cleveland Cavaliers
*Photo via Getty Images
LeBron James and the injury riddled Cleveland Cavaliers fell two games short of the ultimate prize in 2014-15. With majority of the roster returning, the Cavs are the favorite this upcoming season, and the clear cut top dog in my future power rankings.
Cleveland will have the best player in the world wearing 23 for the remainder of his career. Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love are locked up until at least the summer of 2019, and role players like Iman Shumpert and Anderson Varejao could also be around until at least 2018. The biggest issue for Cleveland will be the Tristan Thompson contract situation that’s reached a halt, and Timofey Mozgov, who will be an unrestricted free agent next summer. Out of all of these players, Tristan Thompson seems most likely to leave, but I would bet on everyone staying for the long haul.
With the core of the roster intact, GM David Griffin should be able to find free agents and draft picks to fill roles and will have a roster built to compete into June every season.
The biggest question mark for this team is health. Kyrie has all the skills to be the best point guard in the league, but also has the broken down body of Uncle Drew. Kevin Love has also missed significant time with injuries, but I wouldn’t quite call him injury prone. Anderson Varejao is a season ending injury waiting to happen. That leaves LeBron, who’s managed to dodge major injury in his illustrious career. However, father time is undefeated, and James has already logged so many minutes; it seems like it’s a matter of when and not if he’ll sustain an injury.
But who the hell knows about injuries, so screw all of that (besides Varejao, he’ll get hurt). Cleveland will be one of the best teams in the league this season, and expect their flag to wave on the mountain top until LeBron retires.
Future draft commitments and rosters information courtesy of RealGM.com