The Cleveland Cavaliers are continuing to make advancements in the physical development of their players by hiring Dr. Marc Kovacs as their director of sports science.
Always catches my eye when tennis and the NBA intersect … and league sources say that the Cavaliers are hiring Dr. Mark Kovacs — former NCAA doubles champ who has worked with the @WTA Tour teen sensation Coco Gauff — as the Cavs’ new director of sports science
— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) September 26, 2019
Exactly what Dr. Kovacs‘ duties will entail are unknown, but his hiring represents a step forward in attending to the needs of the franchise’s most valuable commodity: its players. Also uncertain is determining whether or not his role will be based in Cleveland or if he’ll be serving in an advisory capacity as he has with other teams.
As noted in the tweet, Dr. Kovacs is a former NCAA tennis champion, having earned undergraduate and graduate degrees from Auburn University. He then attended the University of Alabama and completed work on a Ph.D. in exercise physiology.
Sports science differs from sports medicine in that the science portion is more concerned with how the body works during exercises. In addition, from the Cavaliers’ perspective, it will focus on attempting to get the best performance from each player.
Last season was an especially painful one for the Cavaliers, with multiple key injuries helping play a part in the team’s disastrous 19-63 record on the season. Kevin Love’s frequent string of injuries over the years, along with the once-durable Tristan Thompson’s second consecutive season of health woes are areas that Dr. Kovacs is likely to target in his analysis.
The youth of the Cavaliers’ roster this year will allow Dr. Kovacs the opportunity to use his scientific background to develop players who are largely in the formative stages of their NBA development.