Cleveland Cavaliers Fan Take: Samardo Samuels is Stepping Up His Game

Yahoo Contributor Network

Back in July, there was a report that Cleveland Cavaliers' center-forward Samardo Samuels was getting himself into shape.

Samardo said:

"I looked myself in the mirror and just worked to change all the bad stuff, just cleared my head and came back a new player."

Then, in September, another report came out. Maybe it is true, I thought, that Samuels is working on improving. Well, after Bob Finnan's article about Samuel's new found dedication to getting into shape, I was convinced that Samuels is going to try to make an impact.

Playing time

Many fans probably think of Samuels as a marginal player who would have no place on a contending team. However, this is great news for a team that could use his presence on the glass. This is especially true now that Antawn Jamison is gone. Samuels will have to prove to Coach Byron Scott that he should earn a regular spot in the rotation. He is listed behind Tristan Thompson on the depth chart now and has a long way to go to get more run. However, this is a good sign moving forward.

Ability

Samardo is an example of a guy who has good natural ability but he hasn't actually achieved playing to his potential yet. His ceiling is much higher than most NBA fans give him credit for. This is a guy who was a top 5 prospect going into college and clearly has the talent and skill set to play in the NBA. The loss of weight and added muscle should translate into additional foot speed and more rebounds. He has NBA post skills. He demonstrates them every few games and shows flashes of being a force in the paint.

Rotation

While it is true that Samuels has been his own worst enemy since leaving Louisville, the Cavs have to be happy to hear that he is taking his NBA career more seriously. If he can get on track, the Cavs will have four nice interchangeable parts in Thompson, Anderson Varejao, Samuels, and Tyler Zeller.

Let's face it, injuries are going to happen. Samuels will have his chances. If he can be a solid contributor, grab some key boards, and knock down some jump shots, that will help the team a lot.

Matt David is a die-hard Cavaliers fan and has been for many years. You can follow him on Twitter here. Still want more? Go to his blog.

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