Youth is Served

October 3, 2012
by Joe Gabriele Managing Editor

Here’s something you’re going to hear all season long: The Cleveland Cavaliers are a very young team.

With the departure of veterans like Antawn Jamison and Anthony Parker, the average age of Cleveland’s 20-man Training Camp roster is just 24.3 years old – including four key players (Kyrie Irving, Dion Waiters, Tristan Thompson and Tyler Zeller) that are 22 or under.

Kyrie Irving – the reigning Rookie of the Year and the team’s unquestioned leader – is younger than the Cavaliers rookies. C.J. Miles has put in seven NBA seasons and he’s just 25 years old. The oldest projected starter is Anderson Varejao, who just turned 30, and the club’s elder statesman – Luke Walton – welcomed the ripe old age of 32 last March.

At some point this season, one of the Wine and Gold’s youngsters will fire a pass wildly out of bounds or take a terrible shot with tons of time on the shot-clock. When that happens, you’ll need to remind yourself that they’re a very young team.

And to help put their age in perspective – and maybe help you control your anger – compiled a list of some old cultural and technological items and ideas that we ancient Cavalier fans – way back in the day – thought were on the cutting edge of culture and technology.

Then we ran it by some of the Wine and Gold’s young bucks ...


Have you ever taped anything or listened to anything on a cassette tape?

Kyrie IrvingKyrie Irving, born March 23, 1992: I’ve never done that.
Tyler Zeller, born January 17, 1990: Yeah. As a little kid, I had the walkman – with the headphones.
Dion Waiters, born December 10, 1991: Nope.
Micheal Eric, born June 24, 1988: Yes.
Kevin Jones, born August 25, 1989: I’ve taped something on a cassette before.
Tristan Thompson, born March 13, 1991: I’ve listened to something on a cassette. It was actually Harry Potter. When Harry Potter: The Philosopher’s Stone came out I listened to it on tape because I’m not a reader, I’m a listener. I put the tape in. After the first six chapters, you flip the tape and listen to the other six.
Justin Holliday, born April 5, 1989: I don’t know if I have. Maybe as a little kid. Really little.

Have you ever typed on a typewriter?

Irving: Yes. Recently? No.
Zeller: I have, but I don’t remember when. My grandmother had one. I didn’t actually type anything. I was just pressing the buttons.
Waiters: No.
Eric: Actually I did. In Nigeria.
Jones: No! My mom used to have a typewriter, but I never typed on it.
Thompson: I actually have. My babysitter was a much older woman and she had one. I didn’t know how type; I just played with the keys.
Holliday: No.

What’s the first game system you ever played on?

Justin HollidayIrving: Sega Dream Cast
Zeller: Dream Cast. It was the one before X-Box. Because I wasn’t allowed to have video games until I was in like sixth grade. And my mom finally gave in and we got a video game and I think it was Dream Cast.
Waiters: Nintendo 64.
Eric: Sega Genesis, baby!
Jones: Super Nintendo.
Thompson: Nintendo.
Holliday: Sega Genesis.

When was the last time you used a pay phone, if ever?

Irving: Last year. When my cellphone went dead.
Zeller: I don’t know if I’ve ever been on a payphone. I’m sure I have. But I don’t remember when.
Waiters: Oh my God! I haven’t been on one of those in so long.
Eric: Hmm. Maybe 2001, I think.
Jones: Yeah. I’ve been on a pay phone. Probably elementary school.
Thompson: I used a pay phone before! We had one in our apartment building growing up in Toronto. I remember one time I couldn’t get ahold of my mom, so I had to use a payphone to call collect.
Holliday: Maybe middle school. I used to have to call home.

Have you watched anything recently on a VCR?

Kevin JonesIrving: I still have one! Because my middle school games are still on there. I feel like me, watching myself, I felt like I was a pro back then.
Zeller: We had those. But we made my mom and dad get rid of 'em, because they were too addicted to 'em.
Waiters: Nahhh.
Eric: I still have one. I have some high school basketball tapes that I still want to watch. That’s when I started to learn basketball.
Jones: High school. It wasn’t that long ago.
Thompson: I used to watch Barney on a VCR! I watched all the Disney movies on VCR.
Holliday: I would have to say probably some time a couple years back.

Have you ever used a Polaroid camera?

Irving: Someone’s taken one of me. But a couple years ago, I’d say.
Zeller: I’ve never used one. But I’ve had people take pictures of me with one.
Waiters: I don’t need a Polaroid. I have the phone!
Eric: Never used one.
Thompson: I’ve never used one. I’ve seen one. Someone’s taken a Polaroid photo of me.
Holliday: When I was younger. Middle-school, maybe.

Have you ever had a walkman or discman?

Micheal EricIrving: I haven’t listened to anything on a walkman since seventh grade.
Zeller: I used to listen to books on a CD walkman.
Waiters: Nope.
Eric: A walkman? I still have it, but don’t use it. I keep it in my storage just to keep some vintage stuff. And my CD discman – I have that, too.
Jones: I’ve never used a walkman before.
Thompson: Can it be a CD walkman? It would skip every time you ran! I hated it.
Holliday: Maybe back in middle school again.

When was the last time you sent or received something personal by “snail” mail – (with the stamp and everything)?

Irving: I get a birthday card from my grandparents all the time. (There’s no more money though. The money stopped after I got drafted.)
Zeller: Like, last week, actually. I love getting mail. My girlfriend’s in North Carolina, so we’ll send letters back and forth to each other once in a while.
Eric: Actually, I still do that. I send a card to my girlfriend through the mail. She loved it! That’s “cool” points right there.
Jones: I’d say high school.
Thompson: When I was eight years old, I used to send mail to Pokemon headquarters to ask for cards and see if they’d send some back. They never did.
Holliday: That was done awhile back. The last time I sent something to Santa Claus was …

Have you ever seen a drive-in movie?

Irving: Never.
Zeller: I have. It was Star Trek, the newer one. It was about three or four years ago. It was great.
Waiters: No, never been there.
Eric: Actually, I went to my first drive-in this year. In Harrisburg, PA. Went to see “Ice Age.” It was interesting.
Jones: No!
Thompson: I have been at the drive-in movie. It was back in Toronto. I can’t remember the movie, but now when I think about drive-in movies, I’m very creeped-out by it, because there’s always some horror stuff or “Criminal Minds” where you hear stories about people getting killed at drive-in movies. I’m not about that. So no more drive-in movies.
Holliday: Actually, I did that last summer! I went to Santa Barbara, my cousin plays volleyball there, and we went to the drive-in movie. We saw “The Smurfs.”