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Byron Scott not a member of the Marreese Speights fan club

Mar 6, 2013, 9:32 AM EDT

Marreese Speights AP

Rookie Tyler Zeller has been starting at center for the Cleveland Cavaliers, which really speaks more to their depth issues than his play.

But Monday night Zeller was out and Marreese Speights got a chance got a chance to start, he hit 10-of-10 for 21 first half points when the Cavaliers were ahead of the New York Knicks. Like all the Cavaliers not named Irving Speights struggled in the second half (two points on 0-for-4 shooting).

Like many coaches, Byron Scott told the Plain Dealer what he remembered was the second half, not the first half.

“I don’t think they did anything,” he said of New York’s defense. “I thought he missed some shots that he had. I thought he took a couple of bad shots. I thought defensively against the pick and roll he was really not there.

“I thought in the first half he was really focused and into it and the second half I thought he probably stayed in the locker room from a mental standpoint.”

I get where Scott is here, Zeller is the youngster and the future and he needs a lot of run. The Cavaliers are a young team learning about playing together and winning in the league. And Scott would not be the first coach frustrated with Speights.

But Speights has some experience winning in Memphis the last couple years, he gets the game, and he could teach those youngsters a thing or two if they are watching.

  1. ljl2 - Mar 6, 2013 at 9:44 AM

    Another reason Scott is overrated as a coach. He is still living off success of the Nets while people forget how stacked those teams were.

    And the idea of saying you play Zeller over Speights due to a youth movement is ridiculous. Speights is 25 and Zeller is 23.

    • jkiddingme - Mar 6, 2013 at 10:31 AM

      stacked? did you just start watching basketball? it was Jason Kidd and a bunch of nobodies and Byron Scott had a lot to do with it with his coaching

      • youcantbesirius - Nov 26, 2014 at 10:17 AM

        A bunch of nobodies? Are you serious?

    • ss3walkman - Mar 6, 2013 at 10:45 AM

      Exactly. They make it seem as if Speights can’t be part of the youth movement when he’s just 25 and in his 3rd or 4th season.

    • jeremyhurst - Mar 6, 2013 at 10:49 AM

      Funny story:
      I picked up NBA2k13 the other day, and started a franchise mode game with the Cavs. I got kind of bored playing every game pretty quickly, so I started simulating entire seasons.

      After simulating 3 or 4 seasons, Kyrie was a 97 overall, Waiters a 95, Thompson an 89, and Zeller a 82. Gee was mid 80s and Speights was also mid 80’s and I dont remember who I still had on the bench. If you don’t play the games, the numeric rating is player quality on a 100 point scale, so the team was basically stacked.

      I had re-signed Scott to be my coach throughout those seasons.

      Two of the four seasons I made the playoffs (still simulating) and got bounced in round 1. The other two season (that were actually the later seasons when the players were amazing and getting better) I didn’t make the playoffs at all.

      I was perplexed. Surely my 98 offense and 99 defense team ratings would mean I would make the playoffs, but no.

      So I fired Scott and hired some random CPU generated chubby guy, and guess what?

      The next 3 simulated seasons all resulted in Championship wins.

      I’m thinking NBA2k13 knows something I fear to be true.

      Scott is a great molder of young PG/SG players, but not a great overall team coach.

    • thesixersbench - Mar 6, 2013 at 11:45 AM

      To be fair, Mo Speezy has found his way into the dog house of every NBA coach he’s ever been with. Guy is just mentally lazy.

    • kinggw - Mar 6, 2013 at 12:53 PM

      Please go back and look at the Nets teams that went to the Finals. They were the antithesis of stacked. Any team that gave Lucious Harris plenty of burn is not stacked.

      • jeremyhurst - Mar 6, 2013 at 12:56 PM

        Where did I say anything about the Nets being stacked?

  2. acdc363 - Mar 6, 2013 at 10:43 AM

    I picked up Speights in fantasy right when I heard about the trade cause when that dude gets minutes he can BALL. But starting Zeller over him is absurd! I had to to drop Speights a while ago but I wish I kept him for the Knicks game lol.

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