Coming into the 2016-2017 season, the Cavs had their minds set on utilizing the 6’10, Chris Andersen as the traditional center. They found out 12 games later, that an ACL tear would end his season. From that point they thought that they could suffice, but the loss of Kevin Love for six weeks did not help. They currently sit in the middle of the pacfor rebounding, and shot blocking is ranked 26th in the league. Andrew Bogut was the hopeful player that was going to make the impact necessary, but 58 seconds later, that was already in the past.
The only ‘true’ big that the Cavs had was Tristan Thompson, but today that has changed. They signed Larry Sanders, who was the 2010, 15th overall pick and is coming from the Milwaukee Bucks. Sanders has not played since 2015, but he has a very promising potential that gives the Cavs hope. He is a 6’11 center who averaged 6.5 points, and 5.8 rebounds in his career. Interestingly, he averages 1.8 blocks per game and that is ranked 6th among active players in blocks per game.
The rim protector is not something that the Cavs have had in many years, and now they might have found the final championship piece. Sanders averaged 19.8 minutes in his career, and the Cavs will utilize him no more than this. They will keep him as an active spark off of the bench to clean up the paint, and to fill a crucial void down low.
Sanders has taken these past couple years off for reasons that are much more than basketball, and for a reason that is very much respectable. His mental health, and he said in an interview that he will not return to the game until his mental health allows him too. Two years later he feels that he is capable of returning to the league, and here he is as a Cleveland Cavalier.
There are many expectations for a great player to make an impact down low, and we will see he does for the remainder of the season.