The next two games will tell a lot about how much the Cleveland Cavaliers have improved this season.
The Cavaliers have been playing much better over the last few weeks, particularly since Shaun Livingston, Marreese Speights and Wayne Ellington were added to the roster. The team is 5-5 in its last 10 games, and one of the five defeats was a very narrow loss to the Miami Heat.
Over the last few weeks, the Cavaliers have looked like a much, much better team than the Cleveland team that started the season. Kyrie Irving has been amazing, big men Tristan Thompson and Tyler Zeller have looked great at times, the team has gotten solid contributions from all of its starters, and the bench play has been much improved.
And while it is certain that the team has definitely improved, the next two games will be a good way to gauge just how much better the team has gotten.
On Tuesday, The Cavaliers will go on the road to take on the Chicago Bulls. The Bulls are currently in second place in the NBA Central Division, and they have soundly beaten the Cavaliers every time they have played them this season.
The Cavaliers come into this game playing the best that they have all year, while the Bulls have been struggling lately. This is the perfect opportunity for the young Cavaliers to show that they have improved and at least be competitive with the Bulls, if not beat them.
On Wednesday, the Cavaliers return home to take on the Toronto Raptors, who are currently in last place in the Atlantic Division. Earlier in the season, when the Cavaliers played other poor teams such as the Raptors, especially in the second night of back-to-back games, the Wine and Gold players often came out without much energy and played poorly.
If the Cavaliers really have improved and now really are more focused than they were earlier in the season, they should be able to come out and play hard and pick up a win.
If the Cavaliers get blown out once again by the Bulls and then come out flat against the Raptors, fans are going to be disappointed and wonder if the team really has improved very much or not. This is a great opportunity for the players to show the fans just how much better they have gotten, and prove to the coaches that they can be the foundation for a good team.