Coach Scott has the Cavs running:
Scott does heavy running at the start and finish of each practice in camp and then runs a crisp schedule so players are doing drills while fatigued to help build up stamina.
But the finish seemed to make the biggest impression. The players run three series of shuttle sprints (foul line, half court, opposite foul line, full court) in a row in groups and everyone must complete them within two minutes. Scott and his assistants watch closely to make sure the players touch each line. Cheating means they have to start over.
Then they run three more.
“I saw a couple guys throw up, I’m not going to point them out, but it is good for us,” Jawad Williams said. “It wasn’t nothing fun, my feet are on fire.”
Breakfast wasn’t the only thing that didn’t make it for some. Rookie Samardo Samuels cramped up and missed about the last half-hour. But otherwise, every player made it through the first day’s challenge.
“Whoa, it was very tough. But I know it is going to bring us closer together, it’s got to,” Gibson said. “Everybody made it through and we pushed each other the whole way. We’re going to start to love him for it, but right now it’s tough on us.”
I hope they stick with it. Too often NBA teams return to training camp professing their new found love of the running game only to have it fall by the wayside once the games start.
With guards like Mo Williams and Ramon Sessions and big men like Antawn Jamison and J.J. Hickson (plus Jamario Moon), the Cavs are better suited to run as opposed to a slower, grind-it-out style. Plus, I’m not sure how good they’re going to be on defense (because they have guys like Williams, Jamison and Hickson) so they may need to simply outscore other teams.