The Cavs played outstanding team basketball tonight; 72% of their shots were assisted. They played stellar defense too, holding the Heat to 40% shooting from the field, even after giving the ball away 15 times and letting the Heat sprint on a 21-7 run in the second quarter. The Good Guys just could not be contained and had a sixteen point lead at the end of the third quarter. With the win over the Heat, the Cavs have defeated every team in the East at least once. This was the first win against Miami in a long time. (Miami was missing D. Wade) There’s something special going on at the Q these days, and sloppy segments of basketball can’t stop it. Let’s check it out. (more…)
Archive for the ‘Recaps’ Category
Los Angeles was built on persistence of vision. It’s all an illusion. A flaw in our narcissism of self-love that fits the desert oasis tight like a blood stained glove. LA is a mirage and so are the people. They contort themselves to fit the idea of LA. There were times I questioned if they were ever actually there in the first place. They just couldn’t have been real.
The Cavs win streak is over, and it’s largely thanks to their own actions and those of CJ Miles. The King’s men opened up the first two quarters ahead of the Pacers because they managed to shoot fifty percent from the field and 3-line with just four turnovers. LeBron James also took advantage of some great matchups to iso the Pacers to death for stretches. The second half the Cavs took 25 3-pointers and made just six of them, while the Pacers were 4-10 from the beyond the arc and had seven steals. Down the stretch the Cavs weren’t able to and didn’t really want to get any easy points off cuts or drives, which let the Pacers secure the win. It also helped that CJ Miles had a 16 point fourth quarter. The Wine & Gold seemed gassed as the night went on. (more…)
Welcome to CtB Podcast episode 60! Tom, Mallory, and I watched the Cavs disassemble the Clippers for three quarters last night, and decided that we had to podcast about it. The Cavs built a 32 point lead in the first three quarters, and completely dominated the frustrated Clippers, who picked up five techs, a flagrant foul, and a Matt Barnes ejection in the contest. Blake Griffin led the Clips with 16 and eight rebounds, but was -24 for the game. Kevin Love led Cleveland with 24 points and nine rebounds in 29 minutes, while LeBron kicked in 23 and nine assists, with only two turnovers in 28 minutes. That’s efficiency, my friends.
Using a main rotation of the starters + Tristan Thompson, Iman Shumpert, and Matthew Dellavedova, the Cavs were up 94-63 going into the final frame, before David Blatt cleared the bench. Shawn Marion, Mike Miller, James Jones, and Brendan Haywood got to play, and the Cavs starters got to rest. That led to a 31-11 quarter for the Clips, but it was all smiles in Cleveland at that point, despite a big quarter from the surly Clippers bench.
After the game, Chris Paul put his foot in his mouth when talking of standout referee Lauren Holtkamp, and had these lovely words to say about one of her calls.
There’s no way that can be a tech. … That’s ridiculous. If that’s the case, this might not be for her.
Personally, I thought Holtkamp did a nice job of not letting the whinefest from the Clippers get out of hand, and that Paul will probably face a hefty fine. The Clips seemed to want to junk up the game with hard fouls and chippy talk, and Lauren would have none of it.
Topics for this pod included the recap, discussion of our new favorite ref, positive signs from Kevin Love, Cavs win streak predictions, playoff predictions, MVP, ROY, COY,most improved, and an NBA finals argument. You can listen above, or directly on Soundcloud, or on iTunes at https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/ctb/id901486230 — Go Cavs!
Cleveland rode a hot first quarter and a dominant fourth quarter to a 16 point victory over the Timberwolves, and won game that was closer than the final score appeared. It was the fourth game in five nights for the Cavs, and they join the Hornets and the Hawks as the only teams that have swept a four-in-five stretch this year. The 2015 revenge tour rolled on, and the Cavs won their 10th straight. Amazingly, with Kevin Love returning to Minnesota, Kyrie Irving still coming down from a 55 point game, and Andrew Wiggins facing the team that drafted him, LeBron was almost an afterthought before the game started. By the end, he wasn’t. LBJ scored a game high 36, including 13 in the final nine minutes, and went 14-25 from the floor, as if to say, “OK, rook. I know you’ve got game, but I’m the King.”
The last time the Cavaliers played the Sacramento Kings, they were in the midst of a five game losing streak. GM David Griffin had just pulled the trigger on the second part of the mid-season roster overhaul to acquire Timofey Mozgov. The new look Cavs were without LeBron. After a solid first quarter, they got absolutely hammered. “My how things have changed” is an overused phrase, but it is certainly applicable here.
Friday night, the Kings came to Quicken Loans Arena the losers of seven straight, while the Cavaliers were riding a post shower high, winners of eight in a row. LeBron James was listed as doubtful until shortly before the tip with his sore shooting wrist. With ‘Bron deciding to give it a go, Coach Blatt had his entire roster with which to work. What followed was a methodical beat down.
“I am Kyrie, hear me roar,
With a three stroke too great to ignore,
And I score too much to go back and pretend,
Cause I’ve heard all before,
I’ve been on the ground, restricted part of the floor,
And, no one’s ever gonna stop my threes again!”
Kyrie started the night 0-7 and then proceeded to shoot 17-29 from the field on his way to a career high 55 points. He willed in 11 three pointers on 19 attempts, and had 16 of the Cavs final 20 points. And, boy is his back sore. Kevin Love scored ten points in the first quarter and nothing the rest of the game. Timofey was the second leading scoring getting just 12 points. The craziest stat of all: Irving had just three turnovers. The Blazers really put up a fight, led by LaMarcus Aldridge. He scored 38 points on 13-23 shooting and had 11 rebounds. He even made two threes. (more…)
The Cavs defeated the Pistons to win their seventh straight game. This one was the definition of an uneven game. The Cavs were about as lethargic as I’ve seen them in the opening minutes before LeBron decided to push the tempo off every miss, taking over the game in spurts. Cleveland couldn’t hit 3s no matter how open until they hit four straight to push their lead to 15 points in the third. (They finished 9-34 from downtown.) Shawn Marion gave an inspired two-way effort in the first half and barely saw the court in the second. LeBron, for all his spurious wizardry was downright horrific in the fourth quarter. Kyrie Irving had one of his best games as a Cavalier. There were periods were the only offense the Cavs could generate was on the heels of Kyrie’s defense and in the 4th quarter he alone kept the Pistons at arms-length. The Pistons had moments where they completely dominated the Cavs with dribble drive penetration and individual post moves from Greg Monroe. Andre Drummond dominated the defensive glass and sent six shots back from whence they came. But he finished an abysmal 6-17 from the field and missed a handful of point-blank bunnies, including an uncontested one in the final moments that would have made the game much more interesting. A win is a win, but the Cavs played like the 25th best team in the league outlasting the 27th best team. That both teams shot 42% and the Pistons had zero defensive answers for LeBron dribble drives while the Cavs defensive effort was Swiss cheesian tells you how poorly these teams executed on offense.
In a not a very emphatic win, the Wine & Gold hit 16 threes, gave up only ten points off turnovers, and allowed the Thunder to shoot just 39% from the field. Notice, I said allowed and not held. This was a game where the team that wanted to win probably could have asserted themselves and got the “W” very easily. Fortunately, the Thunder didn’t buckle down, and the Cavs had the edge from the three point line. (more…)
This game was an evisceration, a deconstruction, an immolation, a validation. Cleveland came out engulfed in flames on offense and defense, and eliminated any chance of Charlotte winning by midway through the second quarter. As Phil Hubbard noted, “The JR half-court lob to LeBron for a 60-27 lead with 4 or 5 minutes left in the second quarter was probably the earliest dagger in NBA history.” It happened at less than six minutes in, Phil. Unfortunately, no CtBers were available to watch all of the first half, and thus we had to rely on some of our most dedicated readers to help us recap this one. Just a warning, we might go a little long, tonight. We want to savor every second of this game.
1st Quarter (brought to you by EvilGenius)
Charlotte came to town winners of 8 of their last 9, and without allowing a team to drop a hundo on them since the calendar turned 2015. They were looking to provide the Cavs with the “inevitable trap game” but the Cavs were having none of that from the jump. Even though Mozilla lost the opening tip to Bismack Biyombo, that would be the LAST thing the Cavs would lose on this long, glorious, jailbreak of a night at the Q.