Is Timofey Mozgov The New Mario Chalmers?

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The Cleveland Cavaliers may be sitting at the top of the Eastern Conference, but LeBron James isn’t remotely satisfied. He knows the team isn’t performing as well as they could be, and he’s made it his personal mission to ensure that they do, even if it means getting in the face of his teammates. We saw it when he was on the Heat with Mario Chalmers, and according to Dave McMenamin, we’re seeing it now with Timofey Mozgov.

It’s clear Mozgov is testing James’ patience. When Mozgov collided with Anderson Varejao during a drill after practice this week and fell to the floor, clutching his forehead, James could be heard loudly telling a teammate, “You can’t make this s— up,” gesturing to Mozgov laying down in the paint.

Mozgov had a surgical procedure on his knee during the offseason, and it seems as if he hasn’t gotten to full form. His scoring, rebounding and field goal percentage are all down on a per-minute basis from his previous half-season in Cleveland. And LeBron has apparently realized that you can’t just yell at seomeone until their knee feels better or until their shots start falling (even if he did it to Mario).

“I think I may have to change my approach a little bit,” James said to ESPN.com. “A lot of it is predicated on how much he means to our success, how big of an impact he made once he got here last year. And when you see that type of impact, you expect it. And you expect it every single night and you expect it consistently, but I may have to change my approach how I lead him. I think I’ll figure a way out. I’ll figure another method.”

Basically, Mozgov was so good last season that he pissed LeBron off by not being that good this season. We knew LeBron was a coach on the floor, but we maybe didn’t fully realize he’s a hardass coach on the floor. Maybe a softer LeBron will perk poor Timofey up.

(Via ESPN)

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