Originally written on Waiting For Next Year  |  Last updated 1/16/12

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This-> “There is reason for excitement in Cleveland. It’s been eleven games, sure, but Kyrie Irving is coming into his own right before our eyes. Every night he plays with more and more confidence. He’s scored 20+ points in his last 4 games. It’s likely that he’ll hit some rough patches but as it stands now, he has the 5th highest rookie PER of all time. Ahead of him? Oscar Robertson, Michael Jordan, Walter Davis, and Chris Paul. (h/t to @docrostov for that stat) Try to fathom this: he’s the best player for an NBA team at nineteen years old. What were you doing when you were nineteen?” [Kaczmarek/Hardwood Paroxysm]

“If in fact the Indians are making a decision between the two players, it is a tough decision they have to make. The way things are looking they will likely sign one of these two players, but the question is who and which one is the best fit? Both are are solid to above average defenders, so evaluating their defense is moot as both will provide a defensive boost at first base the Indians need. It is the offense that will be the separator and determines which player fits best.

Most of the focus is on adding a power bat, but the Indians also need guys that can consistently put the bat on the ball and be productive. The Indians were actually in the middle of the pack in power last season as their 154 home runs ranked them 16th in MLB, and their .714 OPS was 18th in the league. But the Indians struck out 1269 times which was 5th worst in the entire league and was the highest total in franchise history.” [Tony/Indians Prospect Insider]

“Remember when we spoke glowingly of how dominant the defensive line should be next year? That’s good because if the linebackers perform in 2012 like they did during the 2011 season, the line will once again be carrying the load in terms of run-support and pressuring opposing quarterbacks with a linebacker corps that is atypical for an Ohio State team in that is somewhat serviceable, but nothing near spectacular.” [Jason/Eleven Warriors]

“Seven months later, nobody in Cleveland is questioning whether the Cavs made the right choice on Kyrie Irving with the top pick. Nobody is seeing DeSagana Diop when they look at Tristan Thompson. But three weeks into the season many are coming to realize there was more to this draft than some had predicted. The Cavaliers’ trip out West was evidence of that. In Utah, Enes Kanter has been one of the top rookie rebounders and Alec Burks has been quietly efficient in a limited role. In Phoenix, Markieff Morris is shaping up as one of the more astute picks at No. 13 with his blend of size and perimeter shooting.

Cleveland State product Norris Cole is making an impact for the Miami Heat as a late first rounder and even Isaiah Thomas — the 60th and last drafted player, chosen by Sacramento — is getting nearly 14 minutes per night.” [Reed/Cleveland.com]

O-H… [Qrazy Qarl]

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