Bless Tristan Thompson’s heart. He really believes that the Cleveland Cavaliers are still the team to beat in the Eastern Conference, even though LeBron James left this past offseason. When Thompson spoke with the media on Thursday, he grew increasingly upset over them implying that the Cavs’ best years were behind them, especially with LeBron gone. TT let it slide for as long as he could before saying something.

Thompson’s stance that the Cavaliers are the team to beat this year based on their performance last season is actually correct. But there’s one important caveat of this theory that he’s missing—they no longer have the best player on the planet on their roster. The East is a top-heavy conference that becomes wide open after the Boston Celtics, Toronto Raptors, Philadelphia 76ers, Indiana Pacers, and Milwaukee Bucks, but that doesn’t mean we can just pencil the Cavs into one of those playoff spots. 

According to ESPN’s NBA BPI Playoff Odds posted back in August, the Cavaliers have a 7.3 percent chance of making the postseason. If statistics can’t persuade Thompson from changing his outlook on the Cavs this upcoming season, then just look at what Ben Simmons and the Celtics’ Marcus Morris had to say in response to Tristan’s remarks.