Overview: In an extremely ugly game, the Cavs were able to hold off the Pistons down the stretch and grind out a 79-73 win despite the fact LeBron, Z, and Mo combined to shoot 17-46 from the floor. Cavs-Related Bullets: Does anyone else selfishly catch themselves selfishly wishing that the Cavs had like, 3 or 4 home losses this year instead of just the one? I get that it’s important for us to feel like the Q is a fortress, but I have to have my heart in my throat when a team like Detroit is hanging around in the fourth quarter. Tonight was about defense, defense, and more defense, as our offense just didn’t have it on this night. Mo and Z weren’t hitting shots, LeBron got kept on the perimeter and went a tidy 3-17 from outside the paint and only got 3 assists. It was ugly stuff out there, and we even were getting beat on the boards. Fortunately, Detroit could get exactly zero going offensively. When they had the ball in the second half, it did not occur to me that they could score-I was just waiting for the Cavs to get the ball back. Before we pat ourselves on the back too badly, Detroit really, really, really mailed this one in-AI was the only guy out there giving a crap down the stretch, which was kind of striking. Oh, and speaking of the stretch, I thought LeBron was off in the fourth quarter tonight. He scored or assisted on every Cavs basket until Mo’s intentional free-throws. His jump shot was not there, but he was moving hard off the ball and finding his spots in transition and finishing with contact including a ridiculous off-balance spinning flip with his wrist as he was getting fouled by Will Bynum. (By the way: why do you not dunk of Will Bynum in that situation?) I’m not sure whether to be troubled or somehow more awed and encouraged that after ripping off a run of drives and passes to put the Cavs ahead, LeBron decided sealing the game would be too easy and instead went for the dagger with a pull-up jumper and a ridiculous lefty wraparound pass in traffic to Varejao as he was flying to the basket. The game may actually be too easy for LeBron at this point. Again, big ups to the bench crew for putting together a monster second quarter with LeBron on the bench.
Bullets of Randomness: Just an all-out implosion by Detroit’s backcourt tonight. 9 assists for the team, the entire game, and for all AI gets, he was clearly the best Piston on the floor tonight. This week has been like a revival act for old guards against us.
Does this still feel like a rivalry to you guys? I don’t really see the intensity anymore. I would much, much, much, much rather play these guys than the Bulls at this moment.