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Anthony Bennett Not Getting A Fair Shake

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  • Anthony Bennett Not Getting A Fair Shake

    I felt the urge to write about this, because I really feel bad for the kid. And yeah, a lot of the pity is coming from that gentle Canadian heart of mine. But this morning I watched a video of Gary Payton on FoxSportsLive emphatically yelling at Bennett to step it up, and to work his butt off to get into NBA game shape. Which is fair enough. And so after finally playing more than 20 minutes for the FIRST time this year (no exaggeration, I couldn't believe it) he put up 15 points with 8 boards. The Cavs lost the game to the Pelicans, and it wasn't even close. But this has been a recurring theme for the Cavaliers this year who, under their head coach Mr. Potatohead, have met zero expectations.

    Here's the thing though: typically, teams that draft a 1st overall pick have had zero expectations placed on them going into the forthcoming year. And that translates into copious playing time for their beloved rookie, with all associated growing pains. But this year's Cavaliers had high expectations particularly with Andrew Bynum in the mix, a developing Tristan Thompson, an all-star in Irving, a healthy Varejao, and newly signed Jarrett Jack and Earl Clark. And clearly, that hasn't panned out. Flash back to the 2003 draft when the infamous Darko Milicic was chosen 2nd overall in a draft year more chock full of talent than a high end strip club. Darko, for very good reason as the Pistons won the title that year, played sparing minutes all season long and never developed into the player he was thought to have been. However this certainly is not the case with the Cavaliers. Sure, there is a glimmer of hope for a playoff appearance, but most likely an 8th or 7th seed which will inevitably be shellacked by the Heat or Pacers.

    Maybe Darko was never a high impact-caliber player to begin with, and maybe Bennett is the same way. But how can you truly know given such a belligerently small sample size? Why doesn't ownership in Cleveland just accept that this season is an absolute bust for them, and at least attempt to minimize the number of busts to just one? I figure that it seems pretty blatantly obvious that losing games without even attempting to develop your number one overall pick is a significantly worse option than losing games while building confidence and providing your rookie with valuable in-game experience.

    Just a quick comparison between the number one and number two overall picks. I scrolled through the season stats for both Anthony Bennett and Victor Oladipo to compare the MPG, and you can compare them for yourselves:

    Anthony Bennett Player Log

    Victor Oladipo Player Log

    The disparity in playing time is hilarious, considering both teams are equally as competitive (not competitive at all). I really think it shows how poorly Cleveland's management and coaching staff have transitioned Bennett into the NBA. I get that he has clearly struggled on the court and that he was out of shape early in the season, but good God, the amount of expectations that were placed on him and even the fan booing early on is quite ridiculous. I always felt that confidence can be a huge factor in the development of a young (and in this case, 20 year old) player. Both confidence from the organization, and confidence within the player. And right now, Cleveland has not provided the opportunities nor the environment for Anthony Bennett to even begin thriving. Hopefully that changes real soon.
    Last edited by MoPeteRules; Wed Jan 29, 2014, 02:03 PM.

  • #2


    AB doesn't deserve any minutes. He's out of shape pro with multiple health problems.

    Let's hope he can use his last game as a motivation.

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    • #3
      rocwell wrote: View Post
      AB doesn't deserve any minutes. He's out of shape pro with multiple health problems.

      Let's hope he can use his last game as a motivation.
      It's so weird to see words like this about an "AB" on Raptors forums and have it not be about Andrea Bargnani.....

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      • #4
        rocwell wrote: View Post


        AB doesn't deserve any minutes. He's out of shape pro with multiple health problems.

        Let's hope he can use his last game as a motivation.

        Epic pic, well played

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        • #5
          Dude has some talent for sure, but he got drafted to a wrong team, is out of shape, doesnt get playing time and on thing that baffles me the most is cavs reluctancy to send to the dleague, dude can log 40minutes there, play himself into a better physical shape, get his shot/rhytm back in in-game situations like in two weeks, get back to the cavs ready to play.

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          • #6
            Vykis wrote: View Post
            Dude has some talent for sure, but he got drafted to a wrong team, is out of shape, doesnt get playing time and on thing that baffles me the most is cavs reluctancy to send to the dleague, dude can log 40minutes there, play himself into a better physical shape, get his shot/rhytm back in in-game situations like in two weeks, get back to the cavs ready to play.
            I completely agree with you. And disagree with him not deserving to play. His health problems don't directly affect him on the court, just look at his play in college last year. He looked significantly more in shape last game too, and got over 30 minutes on the court so I hope that carries forward tonight against the Knicks. It's ridiculous to bury your number 1 pick like that, especially when your team still remains horrible without him in the line up. There's no way Earl Clark or Alonzo Gee deserved to play more minutes than him early in the year.

            Tough game though tonight on national TV, mainly because he'll get ripped into by the TNT crew since there isn't a whole lot to talk about during a Knicks-Cavaliers match up.

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            • #7
              MoPeteRules wrote: View Post
              I completely agree with you. And disagree with him not deserving to play. His health problems don't directly affect him on the court, just look at his play in college last year. He looked significantly more in shape last game too, and got over 30 minutes on the court so I hope that carries forward tonight against the Knicks. It's ridiculous to bury your number 1 pick like that, especially when your team still remains horrible without him in the line up. There's no way Earl Clark or Alonzo Gee deserved to play more minutes than him early in the year.

              Tough game though tonight on national TV, mainly because he'll get ripped into by the TNT crew since there isn't a whole lot to talk about during a Knicks-Cavaliers match up.
              It was announced before draft that AB is unfit. ( because of surgery ) Just before season started, it became clear that AB is overweight and Cavs announced that he has multiple health conditions. He has asthma and sleep apnea. And you say it doesn't affect his game? Are you kidding me? Normal human being who are unfit and overweight have no lung capacity to increase the volume of air (they) inhale and exhale beyond normal breathing. AB is an athlete, few mins on the court for him = break time, he's winded.

              It certainly affects his game and he knows it. It's not just losing weight for Mr Bennet unfortunately, but I'm sure Cavs trainers have a plan to get him fit and healthy.
              Last edited by rocwell; Thu Jan 30, 2014, 01:46 PM.

              Comment


              • #8
                AB with 3 fouls in six minutes.

                He is getting better with his fitness, looks like he lost some weight. I don't know why Grant refuses to send him to the D League.. I don't know. Team isn't winning, players are angry, locker room is full of frustrations. It's just bad environment for this kid. Bennett looks like he's playing scared on the floor that's why I think this is the best time to send him to the D League. He needs to regain confidence and continue to work on his health problems without stupid stress caused by fans and locker room problems.

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                • #9
                  4 points, 2 rebounds, 1 assist on 1/6 shooting in 23 mins last nite. Soon enough, we might be able to offer the cavs Laundry Folds for him.

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                  • #10
                    As of now the worst #1 pick of all time. In a league where Kwame Brown was drafted #1.
                    It's Klaw Season. Time to hunt.

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                    • #11
                      What evidence is there that shows that AB has talent at all? Did he preform well in College or something?
                      The Baltic Beast is unstoppable!

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                      • #12
                        enlightenment wrote: View Post
                        What evidence is there that shows that AB has talent at all? Did he preform well in College or something?
                        You can google his stats at UNLV. Bennett was on a good team and as freshmen go, he did well enough. He was always considered a reach at number one overall but definitely was a consensus top 10 pick. I am surprised at how poorly AB has performed on offense with the Cavs. Defensively, Bennett was terrible at UNLV, so there is consistency there.
                        Last edited by stretch; Sat Feb 1, 2014, 05:12 PM.

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                        • #13
                          MIKE BROWN IS A DUMBASS! HE DOES NOT KNOW HOW TO USE YOUNG PLAYERS!!! HE'S MADE EVERYONE HATE DION WAITERS BECAUSE WAITERS SAID HE FEELS THAT KYRIE IS NOT HELD ACCOUNTABLE LIKE HIM WHICH HE IS RIGHT!! THEN HE TAKES A #1 PICK AND EXPECTS HIM TO PRODUCE SOON AFTER HAVING SHOULDER SURGERY AND OBVIOUSLY HE ISNT GOING TO PERFORM WELL COMING OF A SURGERY!!!! AND TOP OF THAT WHO PLAYS A FUCKING #1 PICK 20 MINUTES ONLY TWICE THE WHOLE FUCKING SEASON ITS FEB ALREADY!!! THEY REASON IRVING, WAITERS, BENNETT ALL LOOK LIKE COMPLETE SHIT THIS SEASON IS BECAUSE OF ONE MAN MIKE MOTHERFUCKING BROWN!!!!!

                          -sorry I had to get that out of my system
                          "Both teams played hard my man" - Sheed

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                          • #14
                            Hmm, it is interesting, after getting high lottery picks in multiple seasons in a row, all of them are looking like disappointments. Maybe the common variable (coach/organization) is the problem between all their young talent?
                            The Baltic Beast is unstoppable!

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                            • #15
                              enlightenment wrote: View Post
                              Hmm, it is interesting, after getting high lottery picks in multiple seasons in a row, all of them are looking like disappointments. Maybe the common variable (coach/organization) is the problem between all their young talent?
                              Yeah maybe they should get Dwayne Casey in there
                              A key that opens many locks is a master key, but a lock that gets open by many keys is just a shitty lock

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