We have to come to the age of “Resting Players” in the NBA. Unlike other sports where you might be down a player for a half or a few innings we’re talking entire games. I know 82 games is a long season and very taxing on the the players, but I just don’t remember the vets resting like this when I was growing up.
Resting 1 player is one thing, but we’re finding teams resting 2-3 hell sometimes all the starters in 1 game. I sit back and think, is this about rest when you sit that many players, or are you planning a matchup later on down the road? Take the Cavs for example that are heading into one of their final games of the season and are planning on resting LeBron, Kyrie, and Love. They’re 1 game out of first in the east and really it’s a must win if they want to take the number 1 seed.
But let’s look what not winning the number 1 seed will bring them; the Pacers (4-0) that they’ve beat pretty convincingly all season with the exception of the last meeting on April 2nd. The Bucks (4-0) that they’ve also beat in every matchup and the Raptors (4-0) that they’ve beat in all matchups as well. So basically the 2nd seed is full of matchups of teams the Cavs have beaten all season long.
If the Cavs win the 1st seed the potential matchups that route are way harder for them with their combined regular season record 7-11 against those teams. (Bulls 0-4, Hawks 1-3, Celtics 3-1, Wizards 3-3.)
It doesn’t take a rocket scientists to see right through this entire “resting players” crap to see that they are looking for the easiest road to the championship. Perfect example is Greg Popovich the coach that started this resting trend in San Antonio came out and said after the Clippers loss the other night, “Our execution at both games, defensively and offensively, was very poor,” Popovich said, via ESPN. “Nobody’s going to rest. Everybody’s going to play. We already rested everybody, and we have days in between now. It’s like the playoffs, kind of. There’s no back-to-backs. There’s no bad travel or anything like that, so it’s time for rhythm and that sort of thing. Hopefully, we’ll play better next week.”
The Cavs have been resting players all season and are a team in desperate need of chemistry and time on the floor. LeBron has made this journey before and it’s always harder repeating. I guess the easier road is one with great matchups. The team with a true heart of a “CHAMPION” wouldn’t want to rest for the easy road! A true champion would want to continue to gel as a team and finish what they started!