We are currently 22 games into the the 2015-2016 NBA Season. The Cleveland Cavaliers have looked solid so far with a 15-7 record overall to show for it. The Cavaliers have been in the media a lot lately for positive and negative things. The fifteen games the team has won have been pretty good victories. Most of the losses have been sort of controversial because the Cavs have played down to the competition.
Let’s take a look at the five biggest threats to the Cleveland Cavaliers for Eastern Conference supremacy.
5. Detroit Pistons
The Detroit Pistons currently hold a 13-11 record and sit slightly out of the eighth spot in the Eastern Conference. The Pistons match up extremely well against the Cavaliers. They aren’t afraid of the Cavaliers and it showed with their 104-99 victory over the Cavs on November 17, 2015. The Pistons are a young and exciting team led by big man Andre Drummond. They also know what to do to beat the Cavaliers. Their big hurdle is just finding their groove during the season so that they are in a position to face the Cavs in the playoffs and win the East. Let’s see what happens, things should get interesting with this young Pistons team.
Check out some highlights from the Pistons 104-99 victory over the Cavaliers on November 17, 2015.
Click “Next” to see the number four team who will be a threat to the Cavs!
4. Atlanta Hawks
The Atlanta Hawks currently hold a 14-10 record which is good for sixth place in the Eastern Conference. When they played the Cavaliers on November 21, 2015, the Hawks looked overmatched against a short-handed Cavaliers team. They took a loss a few weeks ago, 109-97. However, you still have to give the Atlanta Hawks their respect. They did make it the NBA Eastern Conference Finals last year where they got swept by the Cavaliers. It would not be a big surprise if these two teams meet again in the Eastern Conference Finals one more time. Look for Jeff Teague, Paul Millsap, and Al Horford to turn up the intensity and finish strong as the year progresses.
Check out some highlights from the November 21st matchup between the Hawks and the Cavaliers at The Q.
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3. Indiana Pacers
The Indiana Pacers currently hold a 13-8 record, good for 4th place in the Eastern Conference. Paul George has returned to form and has had strong individual outings this year, including a 32-point, 11-rebound effort in a 101-97 loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers on November 8, 2015. Paul George was not too impressed with the Cavaliers’ team and had some very interesting things to say about how he feels his Pacers team matches up against the Eastern Conference defending champs. You can’t fault Paul George for his confidence. However, the Pacers have a lot of work to do if they are to somehow dethrone the Cavaliers for best team in the Eastern Conference.
Check out some highlights from the November 8th matchup between the Pacers and the Cavaliers at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland.
Click “Next” to see the number two team who will be a threat to the Cavs!
2. Miami Heat
The Miami Heat and the Cleveland Cavaliers squared off at The Quicken Loans Arena on October 30, 2015. The Cleveland Cavaliers were victorious 102-92. The next matchup between these two teams resulted in a Cavalier loss, but LeBron James sat out this game so it’s not a good barometer on how they matchup. Despite losing in their first outing, the Miami Heat have been playing some solid basketball this year. They currently stand at 12-9 through 19 games and sit at seventh in the Eastern Conference. They are also leading the Southeast Division.
The team is pretty loaded as well. They have a starting lineup of Goran Dragic, Dwyane Wade, Luol Deng, Chris Bosh, and emerging star Hassan Whiteside. Dwyane Wade is looking like the Wade of the past with his dominant play. He scored 27 points, grabbed 7 rebounds, and dished out 4 assists against the Philadelphia 76ers a few weeks ago. Wade is playing good ball and with the emergence of young stars like Justise Winslow and Hassan Whiteside, the Heat could be a serious challenger to the Cavs for Eastern Conference Supremacy.
Check out some highlights from the October 30th affair, Heat vs. Cavs in the Q.
Click “Next” to see the number one threat to the Cavs in the East!
1. Chicago Bulls
The Chicago Bulls and the Cleveland Cavaliers have a strong rivalry that started before LeBron James departed the Cleveland Cavaliers to play four years with the Miami Heat. In fact, it even goes way back to the 90’s era when Michael Jordan tormented the Cavs year after year in the playoffs. The rivalry picked up right where it left off once James returned to the Cavaliers for the 2014-2015 season. The Cavaliers defeated the Chicago Bulls and a hard-fought 2015 Eastern Conference Semifinals series four games to two.
The Chicago Bulls have made tweaks to their roster to match up better with the Cavaliers in hopes of getting past them in the playoffs this year. They also fired their head coach Tom Thibodeau and hired Fred Hoiberg. The Bulls currently sit at the fifth place in the Eastern Conference standings through 12 games. Jimmy Butler is playing strong basketball averaging a team high 21 points per game. Derrick Rose has shown flashes of his former MVP self for a few games this year. There is a long season still to play but expect the Chicago Bulls to be a legit contender in the Eastern Conference playoff picture. If the Cavs face the Bulls again in the playoffs the Cavs will need to play their A-game in order to defeat this tough Chicago Bulls squad.
Check out some highlights from the first game of the season where the Bulls defeated the Cavaliers 97-95.