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The Cleveland Cavaliers are not True Contenders

David Richard-USA TODAY Sports
David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

Many NBA fans and "experts" have the Cleveland Cavaliers as their title favorites this season, I'm here to tell you its not going to happen.  Why aren't the Cavaliers true title contenders?

Of course the team does have the best player on the planet in Lebron James.  They also have plenty of scorers to supplement James' pass first mentality.  The problem is on the defensive side of the ball.  While James is one of the best on ball defenders in the league and Anderson Varejao is a decent rim defender, there's not much else keeping the opponent from scoring.  Kevin Love is a walking double-double but isn't known for his defense, Kyrie Irving is still young enough to be taught defense is important but it won't happen over night.  Come playoff time, Lebron will be forced to do nearly everything on defense and that's just not good enough to win a championship.

While you could make the claim that this Cavs team is more talented than James' Miami teams, when those Miami teams wanted to turn their defense up no one was beating them.  You can't say the same for the Cavs...yet.  

Essentially, what we will get out of the Cavaliers this season is a 55-60 win team that, I believe, will lose in the Eastern Conference Finals to the Chicago Bulls.  Lebron can and, most likely, will bring a Larry O-Brian trophy to Cleveland, it just won't be in 2015.  Add some defensive talent to the roster and we could be talking championship come this time next season.

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