Monday, July 28, 2014
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

James makes Cavs better, now East more wide open

LeBron James

FILE - This Sept. 30, 2013, file photo shows Miami Heat basketball player player LeBron James posed during the team's media day in Miami. Four years after their messy breakup, the Cavaliers and James are at least talking about a reunion. Cavs officials met with James' agent, Rich Paul, this week about the free-agent superstar's possible return. The sides visited as James continued his family vacation, a person with knowledge of the details told The Associated Press on Thursday night, July 3, 2014. (AP Photo/J Pat Carter, File)

By
From page B1 | July 13, 2014 |

NEW YORK — A word of caution to anyone anointing the Cleveland Cavaliers as the NBA favorites.

Yes, the Cavaliers are going to be good, no doubt. It’s impossible not to be with the game’s best player. But even LeBron James knows Cleveland has a lot of work to do.

“We’re not ready right now. No way,” he wrote in his first-person essay in Sports Illustrated.

Quite a different tone than when he arrived in Miami four years ago.

Quite a different situation, too.

While the player dominos continue to fall in place during free agency, James’ decision has leveled the playing field even more in the up-for-grabs Eastern Conference.

And the battle should be very entertaining: James vs. the likes of Pat Riley, Phil Jackson and Larry Bird.

Cleveland won’t even be a sure thing within its own division where Bird’s Indiana Pacers and the Chicago Bulls have veteran squads that have played together for years.

And an NBA championship is surely no guarantee, not with the San Antonio Spurs possibly even stronger than the powerhouse that rolled through James and the Heat in the NBA Finals. The Oklahoma City Thunder and Los Angeles Clippers are potent, and the Houston Rockets and Portland Trail Blazers don’t look far away.

So if Cleveland’s a favorite, it may only be a sentimental one, for those wanting to see James lead his home team to a title that has eluded the city in all major sports for 50 years.

“We have to pull for the Cavaliers now,” Charles Barkley said on NBA TV. “We have to pull for that team.”

Some will, but it’s going to be a challenge.

Toronto (Kyle Lowry) and Washington (Marcin Gortat) held on to key pieces from their up-and-coming squads. Brooklyn believes it has another year to contend if Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett stick around, and the Knicks have been telling Carmelo Anthony they expect to be better if he returns.

Even James’ old team could remain formidable with Chris Bosh sticking around and Dwyane Wade expected to do the same, setting up the potential for a wide-open Eastern Conference race that didn’t exist while the Heat ruled it since 2011.

But in the hours after James announced he was trading Biscayne Bay for Lake Erie, it was hard not to get excited about the Cavs’ possibilities.

“LeBron James, Kyrie Irving and Andrew Wiggins have the potential to be a great ‘Big 3,’” Hall of Famer Magic Johnson wrote on Twitter.

His Lakers tussled with one of the best, the Celtics with Bird, Kevin McHale and Robert Parish. Boston later had another championship trio with Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce and Ray Allen, and the Spurs’ core of Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili is the winningest postseason trio of them all.

It was those models that forced James to leave home in the first place, realizing he needed the help he found with Wade and Bosh. He boasted of “not two, not three, not four …” titles upon his arrival, though he abandoned that chase to return to Ohio.

There’s potential there. Irving was the MVP of the All-Star game last year, and Wiggins was the No. 1 pick in the draft. The Cavs’ roster features a fourth No. 1 pick, Anthony Bennett, who struggled badly as a rookie last season but should benefit from a full offseason after he was sidelined while recovering from shoulder surgery last summer.

But potential has gotten many coaches fired.

Oddsmakers, however, seemed convinced, many Las Vegas sports books making the Cavs a 4-1 favorite to win the championship. It will be the fifth straight season James’ team is the preseason NBA favorite, according to RJ Bell, founder of the website Pregame.com.

The other team with them is the Spurs, who got Duncan to return and re-signed coach Gregg Popovich and key players Boris Diaw and Patty Mills to multiyear deals. If they can get Pau Gasol, who tweeted Friday that he’s close to deciding on a team, it’s hard to envision much drop-off from last season’s 62 victories.

But the Spurs are always a sure thing. Things are more uncertain for James and his new team.

He knew he was on an instant title contender when he went to Miami. Even he realizes that may not be the case heading home.

The road to the Eastern Conference championship may no longer go through Miami. The question is whether it still goes through James.

“LeBron’s still in the East,” new Knicks coach Derek Fisher said. “It still makes my job difficult.”

 

The Associated Press

The Associated Press

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

.

Solano News

Rodriguez student collects, stuffs backpacks for others

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
30 years ago, Art Koch died keeping the city safe

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A1, 7 Comments | Gallery

 
Weather for Monday, July 28, 2014

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B2

Artistic ingenuity unhinged at Contraptor’s Road Rally

By Adrienne Harris | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
Rockville Trail hike offered

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3

 
National Alliance on Mental Illness meeting Monday

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3

Summertime Fill the Barrel Food Drive ends Thursday

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3

 
Live music at Solano Town Center mall

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3

County fair opens Wednesday in Vallejo

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3

 
Food preservation class at library

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3

Canines graduate from CHP training academy

By Adrienne Harris | From Page: A3

 
GV Cellars to host Food Bank fundraiser

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4

 
Suisun police log: July 26, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A9

Fairfield police log: July 26, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A9

 
Business workshop addresses marketing

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A10

Fairfield gets new pizza shop

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A10, 1 Comment | Gallery

 
Renowned cardiovascular surgeon comes to NorthBay

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A10

.

US / World

Bills aim to bring family law into 21st century

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
UConn makes 3-D copies of antique instrument parts

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

Family law bills proposed in California

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1, 2 Comments

 
Man dies after lightning strikes 14 in California

By The Associated Press | From Page: A3

California governor to meet with Mexican president

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

 
Study: Blue whales at risk of hitting ships

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

Gaza war rages despite Hamas, Israel truce pledges

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Fighting intensifies near MH17 disaster site

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

.

Opinion

 
Arrogance of power evident

By Earl Heal | From Page: A8, 2 Comments

 
Editorial Cartoon: July 28, 2014

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
District needs peanut-free schools

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A8, 5 Comments

.

Living

Today in History for July 28, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Community Calendar: July 28, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

Randall: Why a ‘liar’ loves to hear from readers

By Sharon Randall | From Page: B5

 
My 33-year-old daughter blames me for all her problems

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: A7

Horoscopes for July 28, 2014

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: A7

 
.

Entertainment

Comic-Con: Kingsley voices animated villain in ‘Boxtrolls’

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

 
‘Lucy’ tops ‘Hercules’ with $44M at box office

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

TVGrid July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

 
Comic-Con’s dark side: Harassment amid the fantasy

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

Comic-Con: ‘Hobbit’ cast tease trailer, bloopers

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

 
Comic-Con: 4 DC Comics brought to TV get event

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

Comic-Con: Radcliffe goes undercover as Spidey

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

 
Comic-Con: ‘Ant-Man’ cast revealed: Lilly, Douglas, Rudd

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

 
Comic-Con: ‘Blacklist’ fans get black fedoras

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

‘The Vampire Diaries’ takes bite out of Comic-Con

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

 
Comic-Con: ‘Batman v Superman’ stare-down

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

Comic-Con: Godzilla sequel announced

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

 
Comic-Con: ‘Avengers’ unleash ‘Ultron’ footage

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

TV team: Actor, detective role paired for 25 years

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

 
TVGrid July 28

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A10

.

Sports

McGloin buried on Raiders depth chart again

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Giants lose in Peavy’s debut, swept by Dodgers

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Lawrence Okoye preparing for the NFL

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
 
It’s ‘Jeff Gordon Day’ at Indy for record 5th time

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Jaso has 3 RBIs as A’s beat Rangers 9-3

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Horsey wins Russian Open in playoff

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Tim Clark rallies to win Canadian Open

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Spain sweeps to victory in International Crown

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Langer wins Senior British Open by record 13 shots

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Mudcats take pair from Pro Player Baseball

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B2

The Big Hurt and Joe Torre headline HOF class

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

 
Italy’s Vincenzo Nibali wins Tour de France

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

LeBron deep-sixes number; will be No. 23 with Cavs

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Byron Scott says he will be LA Lakers’ new coach

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

This date in sports history for Monday, July 28, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
.

Business

.

Obituaries

Elizabeth Terry

By Adrienne Harris | From Page: A4

 
Robert Dale Myers Sr.

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

.

Comics

Frank and Ernest July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Beetle Bailey July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Peanuts July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
B.C. July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

For Better or Worse July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Get Fuzzy July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Wizard of Id July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Baldo July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Dilbert July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Baby Blues July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Sally Forth July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Rose is Rose July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Blondie July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Zits July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Garfield July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Pickles July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Bridge July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Crossword July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

Cryptoquote July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Word Sleuth July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

Sudoku July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Sally Forth July 28

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Zits July 28

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Dilbert July 28

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Get Fuzzy July 28

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Rose is Rose July 28

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

For Better or Worse July 28

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
B.C. July 28

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Wizard of Id July 28

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Baldo July 28

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Blondie July 28

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Baby Blues July 28

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Beetle Bailey July 28

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Pickles July 28

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Garfield July 28

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Peanuts July 28

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Frank and Ernest July 28

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Sudoku July 28

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

Crossword July 28

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

 
Bridge July 28

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

Word Sleuth July 28

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

 
Cryptoquote July 28

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7