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January 2, 2013
Star Sport


Samuels vows to fight for place in Cavs' line-up
Kwesi Mugisa, Staff Reporter

Samardo Samuels in action for the Cleveland Cavaliers last season. - file

Cleveland Cavaliers forward Samardo Samuels has insisted that he will remain positive, despite finding a place in the NBA team's rotation extremely difficult to come by in recent times.

However, entering the final year of his contract, a $2.3 million dollar deal signed with the Cavs in 2010, it appears the Jamaican will certainly have his work cut out for him if he has intentions of securing a new deal with the NBA franchise. In fact, the 23-year-old was only just recalled to team on Monday, after being assigned to the Canton Charge the Cavaliers NBA Development League unit.

Samuels averaged 7.8 points and 4.3 rebounds per game in his first season with the team, managing 10 starts. In his second season he was mostly used as an impact player for the struggling Cavs, but since then has seen his impact consistently diminish. This year the player has averaged career lows in minutes, points per game (pps) and rebounds per game (rpg) and has not looked a part of team coach Byron Scott's plans, averaging 3.2 (pps) and 1.6 (rpg).

According to the 6ft 9in player, however, the current situation is something that can be remedied by hard work.

"I've just been working every day. Every day I go to the gym, I have the same routine, the same attitude," Samuels told Cleveland.com.

"I've just been waiting for my moment to give energy. Every time I go out there, that's my job. I just try to go out there and do my job," Samuels said following a recent game.

The players lost close to 20 pounds in the off-season and reported to the team's training camp in peak physical shape, but it seems to have had no impact on the amounts of minutes played this season. Scott, however, explained that his issues with Samuels have nothing to do with his physical conditioning.

"It probably is the mental aspect," Scott said.

"It's nothing physical. The way he worked this summer, the way he came into training camp, what he did in the summer league ... it's all between the ears right now. It's just getting that part of the game down pat. Once he does, he's going to be in the rotation on a steady basis."

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