Minus LeBron: The Cleveland Cavaliers ‘All Non-LeBron’ Team Since 2003

December 21st, 2009 by Tom Delamater Leave a reply »
The fortunes of the Cleveland Cavaliers changed dramatically in 2003, when the team hit the NBA Draft lottery jackpot and secured the first overall pick. Their choice of LeBron James literally turned the franchise around and placed the city of Cleveland on the NBA map.

Within two seasons the Cavs went from a hapless 17-win pretender to a 42-win playoff contender. Two years later, they played in their first NBA Finals. Two years after that, James was the league MVP.

Conventional wisdom dictates that, to be considered one of the truly legendary NBA stars, LeBron will have to win at least one championship during his career. It’s also widely held that, just as Michael Jordan had his Scottie Pippen, LeBron will need a true, star-caliber sidekick to get his ring.

The Cavs have tried to deliver, but thus far have come up short. The jury is still out on the current pairing of James with Shaquille O’Neal; however, Shaq has rarely, if ever, been considered sidekick material.

As Cleveland tries to steady its current ship for another title run, let’s look at the “All Non-LeBron” team: the five best players—apart from James—who have ...

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