Cleveland Cavaliers: Can Jordan Clarkson Turn Things Around in 2018-19?

Cleveland Cavaliers, Jordan Clarkson, NBA
Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Asking if Jordan Clarkson can turn things around next season is an interesting question because it depends on your definition of “turning things around.” If you’re hoping Clarkson turns into a star backcourt player, then don’t hold your breath. If you’re hoping he turns back into the explosive rim finisher he was in Los Angeles, then you may be in luck.

Look, it’s no secret to anyone who watched Cleveland play last season: Jordan Clarkson underperformed after coming over from the Lakers. In 28 regular season games, he averaged 12.6 points per game on 10.3 field goal attempts but showed a solid increase in three-point percentage (40.7).

In Los Angeles, he averaged 14.5 points on 12.6 attempts (44.8%) but was much worse from three (32.4%). Despite the three-point discrepancy, Clarkson played a better all-around game in purple and gold, showing a quick motor and the ability to finish at the rim through contact. Also, his first-ever playoff action was pretty much abysmal – 4.7 points on 30% shooting. He played so poorly that he was all but eliminated from the rotation by the Finals.

With all that in the past – including LeBron James – Clarkson has the opportunity to play significant minutes for a Cleveland Cavaliers team without much of an identity. However, to have any success, he’ll need to regain his status, especially offensively. Clarkson can turn things around if he – and the team – realize what he can and can’t be.

Jordan Clarkson can turn things around if he, and his team, understand the role he needs to play this season. With such uncertainty surrounding the entire team, that will take some time. My prediction: he has a much better season in Cleveland this year than last, but I wouldn’t be surprised if he were a trade piece by February.

Let’s take a look at what Clarkson is and is not capable of becoming as a player for a better idea of what a bounce-back season could look like.

Next Up: What Jordan Clarkson is Capable of Becoming