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Sports Then and Now



Cleveland Cavaliers Turn the Page Following Lottery Win 8

Posted on May 18, 2011 by Dean Hybl

Nick Gilbert and the Cleveland Cavaliers took a big step forward with their NBA Draft Lottery win.

Yes, it was just a year ago that the Cavaliers had the best record in the NBA and just about everyone in the city was on their collective knees begging their homegrown superstar LeBron James to stay in town.

The fallout from his decision to leave for “South Beach” and the Miami Heat was devastating and was a major reason the Cavaliers had the second worst record in the league and endured the longest losing streak in league history.

But all of that “old history” can be swept back under the rug following the improbable victory by the Cavaliers last night in the NBA Draft Lottery.

Though the 2011 NBA Lottery doesn’t seem to possess a player of the same caliber as James, just the fact that Cleveland can get a new “face” for the franchise and actually has two picks in the top four provides fans with some optimism and the feeling that they can turn the page.

Some sports franchises have taken decades to recover from losing a player of the magnitude of James (and some never recover). So for Cleveland to be given this chance to start fresh just a year later could be a huge help as they look to return to the NBA elite.

Team owner Dan Gilbert has taken a lot of heat over the last year following his remarks in the aftermath of the James decision. However, the best move he has made in a while was staying in the shadows and allowing his 14-year-old son Nick to represent the team in the lottery. Read the rest of this entry →

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      After waiting for 45 years after his retirement, the Sports Then and Now Vintage Athlete of the Month is finally taking his rightful place as a member of the Baseball Hall of Fame.

      Before injuries cut short his Hall of Fame worthy career, Tony Oliva was one of the best hitters in baseball and combined with Hall of Famers Rod Carew and Harmen Killebrew to make the Minnesota Twins a perennial American League contender during the late 1960s.

      Discovered on the baseball fields of Cuba by a Minnesota Twin scout, Oliva came to the United States in 1961 and within three years the American League Rookie of the Year. There have been many great MLB players from Cuba, including a new generation of stars today, but it is hard to argue that there has been a better player from the island in MLB than Oliva.

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