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Trade Grade: 5 Reasons Timofey Mozgov Was Worth The Picks

John Leyba | The Denver Post

1. Finally, We Can Check Off ‘Rim Protection’

“Mozilla” stands at a lofty 7’1” and casts 250 pounds of hustle. He always plays hard, a mentality that can only benefit the Cavs going forward. With constant speculation of lackluster and disengaged defensive efforts, Mozgov brings intensity to a familiar system after playing with Coach David Blatt on Russia’s national team in the 2012 Olympics. While he barely makes the top 30 in the NBA for blocks per game, Mozgov offers length and a sedulous work ethic that will flood the void left by an Achilles-less Anderson Varejao. The Cavs’ towering center has developed his game at an astonishing pace, now averaging a whole block and nine points more per game. Despite two straight blowout losses to start his Cavalier career, Movgoz is already posting better averages with the Wine and Gold. Yes, it’s only been two games; but what’s more convincing is how he plays the game. You just have to see it in what the Cavs conclusively lacked before Mozgov’s arrival: effort.

The Cavs needed this, ranking 29th in opponent’s interior field goal percentage and 23rd for points surrendered in the paint before the trade.

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