- Thompson praises Bickerstaff
- Bickerstaff could influence Thompson future
- Cavs could do better under Bickerstaff
Tristan Thompson is in the final year of his deal with the Cleveland Cavaliers and most are speculating that he will jump ship. For the 28-year-old big man, he made it clear that he will not accept anything lower than what he is already getting. And he has the numbers to show this season.
A look at Basketball-Reference.com shows Thompson playing in 41 games averaging 12.1 points, 10.3 rebounds, and 2.1 assists. Though these are not striking numbers, the 6-foot-9 Canadian remains a force to reckon with inside. Also, it would be best to note that Cleveland previously said that they were fond of Thompson and would love to keep him. Much of that was discussed in a previous post.
Thompson may be quietly doing well but such has failed to help the Cavaliers 2019-20 NBA campaign. As of this writing, Cleveland totes a 15-41 win-loss record in the Eastern Conference. They are at the tail-end of the group and are looking to rebuild yet again, this time under the call of JB Bickerstaff.
As most know, the Cavs parted ways with John Beilein recently. The former Michigan Wolverines coach simply struggled to adjust to the NBA brand of play. Worse, he seemingly lost the vote of confidence of several players like Collin Sexton. But it appears the case is now different with Bickerstaff, son of legendary NBA assistant coach and executive Bernie Bickerstaff. He also had two prior stints as head coach.
No less than Thompson seems pleased with Bickerstaff after their recent win against the Washington Wizards. He singled out how Bickerstaff could read people and is good with personalities. The Canadian even placed him among the ranks of Doc Rivers, Tyronn Lue, and Steve Kerr when he spoke to Cleveland.com.
Looking ahead, this could be good news for the Cavs. If Cleveland does have every intention of keeping the 28-year-old, seeing him happy under the tutelage of Bickerstaff could allow them to convince him to stay. Thompson rarely speaks highly of anyone and lauding the new Cavs head coach may be a bit surprising.
Regardless, it will be too early to tell. The Cavs may be out of the NBA playoff hunt but their performance for the remainder of the season could entice Thompson to stay. The same goes for Kevin Love and Andre Drummond, two stars who have been frequently mentioned in NBA trade rumors.