Recap: Indiana 98, Cleveland 80 (or, Wha’ Happened!?)

Well, I don’t think many of us were expecting that. Gone were the Cavs’ gaudy regular season stat lines with scoring up and over 110, and instead lay an 80-point stink bomb that started smelling from the minute that the Cavs took off their warmups. The Cavs were unprepared, didn’t respect their opponent, and failed to compete throughout the afternoon. In a game that echoed many of their nights of regular-season malaise, the Cavs looked… disengaged and poorly coached.

First Quarter:

Myles Turner took an open elbow jumper right out of the scouting report to break the seal for Indy, and Rodney Hood ran a c-cut off a K-Love baseline screen, and scored a point blanker. Love missed a three, a reload, and a fadeaway before a James steal led to a George Hill dunk to tie it at four. The Cavs wouldn’t score a point again for another five and a half minutes, and Kevin Love would only get five more field goal attempts for the rest of the game.  Meanwhile, the Pacers ripped off a 26-6 run fueled by the Cavs’ terrible offense, and confused defense.

The Cavs offense mostly consisted of standing around, being unable to execute a post entry pass, and trying to throw skip passes that were intercepted by the Pacers, or forcing home-run touchdown passes that were intercepted by the Pacers. The Cavs just weren’t valuing the ball. Here’s a stretch when it was 8-4 Pacers: Shotclock violation, Korver 3-point miss, LeBron failed three-quarter court pass to Jeff Green, Love failed full court pass to LeBron, Hill alley-oop to LeBron deflected by Oladipo, Korver failed skip pass intercepted by Bogdonavic for an and-1 layup (on which Bojan blatently traveled), Hill airball floater (leading to another Bojan plus-one), before Larry Nance finally scored a bucket. You simply can’t go seven straight possessions in the NBA playoffs, and only hit the rim one time.

Meanwhile, Oladipo and Bojan got it going. Dipo would back up, run at his defender, and then pull up for three in his grill. Here’s one in the King’s mug.

The Cavs were fueling the Pacers’ offense, and it was maddening. George Hill was garbage and was overpassing. The Cavs couldn’t get Kevin Love the ball, and the Cavs were being absolutely lazy on offense. The situation only improved slightly when Larry Nance came in and started setting screens and rolling. He got four quick points, but his running mate, Jose Calderon got burned in an isolation by Oladipo, and Ty didn’t trust him much after that. Meanwhile, Jeff Green was turding it up on offense and defense, turning it over by dribbling against guards and just looking invisible on D.

The quarter closed when Victor drained another three. Lance’s Dances came in, strutted his way to five points off Dipo dimes. Only two Clarkson freebies, and a layup by Nance gave the Cavs any hope as they were annihilated in the first: 33-14.

Second Quarter:

The Cavs looked poised to go on a run as a George Hill triple and two BBQ Chicken spin moves by James ripped off seven straight points. Unfortunately, the most bizarre stretch of the game ensued after James went to the bench, and the Cavs were running with Hill, Clarkson, Smith, Love, and Nance, a lineup I’ve rarely seen together. It looked like it might have a shot, but after two misses and a turnover, Trevor Booker cross-checked George Hill at mid-court with a debilitating offensive foul that left George holding his back as he returned to the bench. Hood came in for Hill, and Somehow the Cavs were running a lineup with J.R. freaking Smith at the point.

I guess Ty Lue didn’t want to put in Jose Calderon and have him stuck on Corey Joseph, but after a J.R. finger roll, the Pacers ripped off six straight in just over a minute (including off a Smith turnover) before Lue called a timeout to get James back in the game (for J.R.) with the Cavs down 17. Ye gods.

With James at the one, and Clarkson at the two, the Cavs ran some interesting offense. James started attacking the rack (12 in the quarter), and this double screen with Clarkson and Hood for the King set up a great open layup for Jordan who put it home in the middle of a 9-2 outburst.

But when the Cavs got stops they couldn’t score, and when they scored, they couldn’t get stops. Oladipo kept pouring them in with buckets and dimes to keep the Pacers rolling. He has a swagger now and a confidence that makes him a very dangerous player. Cedi Osman reported to the scorers table, and after Vic walked into another three, Kev finally got on the board with a three of his own. James got to the line and split the pair before Myles Turner closed the quarter strong for the Pacers to leave it 55-38 at the buzzer, and Cedi never had a chance to check in.

We were all dumbfounded at halftime. No one expected this kind of start.

Third Quarter

The third started with a vomit-inducing left-wing isolation of Jeff Green on Myles Turner, which resulted in a laughable miss that left Jeff sprawled on the baseline. No one bothered to pick up his man as Turner stood alone next to the basket and calmly laid in Darren Collison dime. George Hill dribbled off his foot for another Oladipo layup, and a Thad Young block of James led to him hook one in on a ridiculously easy post up over Rodney Hood. Ty Lue took a whatever-emotion-Ty-possesses-that-passes-for-rage timeout with the Pacers up 23 and the Q booing.

Kevin Love put in a pick-and-pop triple from James, and despite some horrible body language and passivity by LeBron, the Cavs started clawing back. J.R. started heating up and the Cavs started clamping down on D. Larry Nance’s energy was infectious, and the wine and gold kept forcing turnovers, and turning those turnovers into points. LeBron finally bought in (thank you, Larry) and started spin-moving his way to the basket. Larry Nance dove on the floor for a loose ball,  and then a Jordan Clarkson steal led to a Larry Nance, hoop and the harm. This was punctuated by the Banana Republican draining a three plus a foul for three more.

Unfortunately, the Cavs had been going under screen all night on the Darren Collison, the league leader in three point shooting, and getting away with it. But when Myles Turner gave him a simple left wing hand off, they got burned, as D.C. rose up and pushed the lead back to ten.

The game got nasty, then, when LeBron drove, got pushed, and then clocked on the head by Lance Stephenson. Somehow it wasn’t ruled a flagrant, but two shots and a technical. LBJ made two of three and the quarter ended with the Cavs in the game at 73-65. What’s a flagrant foul? I don’t know. You be the judge.

Fourth Quarter

While the run was magic, it had come against the Pacers’ bench, and when Ty Lue trotted out most of the same lineup that had gotten them back in the game, I said, “Crap. Ty’s gonna run these guys into the ground.” My fears were confirmed when a classic crappy LeBron closeout led to an easy drive by Stephenson followed by a Clarkson miss. Smith and James scored to cut it to seven before a Nate McMillan time out.

I cringed when a rested Oladipo took the floor, and the Cavs ran out the same lineup. A 12-2 Pacers run ensued against the gassed Cavs. Trevor booker scored on a switch against ragdoll physics engine Jordan Clarkson. Oladipo used a left wing pin down to lose Smith and drain a trey. Sabonis put one back over the ragdoll. Victor walked into a J, and the Pacers abused the trap and found Bogdanovic in the corner (below) to put them up 17 with 7:28 left

Somewhere in this stretch J.R. hit a two. Somewhere in this stretch, the Cavs started trapping way too much. Somewhere in this stretch, Ty Lue waited two possessions too long to call a time out. Somewhere in this stretch Jeff Green bricked a pair of shots, including a wide open corner three. Somewhere in this stretch, we all died a little inside.

The Pacers were too good to lose the lead at this point of the game. Despite a pair of shots by Rodney Hood and a couple freebies by James that cut the deficit to 12, the Pacers were content to milk the clock and rely on the Cavs’ exhaustion for buckets. The Cavs put a lid on their own basket, and after a slick reverse and yet another trey by Vic the lead was 17, and Ty sent his mainliners to the bench with two minutes left. Cedi Osman and Tristan got two minutes of garbage time, and we all had more questions than answers.

Wha’ Happened!?

What the hell was going on with the rotations this game? After saying he was going to run a 10-man rotation, Lue essentially ran with 8.5 guys, with Calderon only getting nine and a half minutes. Cedi got nothing but garbage time. What the hell was that stretch where the Cavs ran with J.R. at the point?

Speaking of garbage, Jeff Green was flaming stinking rotten garbage. In 26 minutes, he scored zero points and grabbed four rebounds. He was 0-7 from the floor and 0-3 from the three, with most of those threes coming from the Pacers daring him to make them. Defensively, he was matched up on Thaddeus Young most of the night. He finished a team low -16.

Why the hell couldn’t the Cavs hit the broad side of a barn? They were 8-34 from three, and 12-20 at the line. The Cavs were 50% from inside the arc. Why didn’t they go to the basket more? Why the hell can’t they post up Kevin Love any more? Why weren’t they taking more advantage of Indy’s kamikaze closeouts? A couple pump and jumps would’ve served them well.

How did Kevin have three shots in the first two minutes, and five the rest of the game despite grabbing three offensive rebounds and 17 overall? (Reward the big man!) Kev just had two shots from inside the arc. He still finished with nine, but this team has turned one of the league’s best post players into a jump shooter. And when they do post him up, they can’t get him the damn ball.

How in a game that the Cavs desperately needed offense, did they not find minutes for Kyle Korver? Yes, Korver was 0-3 and -10 in 3:38, but the team was getting blitzed in the first. Ty Lue said at the end of the game that it wasn’t a minutes restriction or because of Kyle’s foot. Did he just not feel like there was anyone on the court Kyle could guard? I’d’ve put him on Bojan and lived with it.

Why was LeBron James so passive in the first quarter? He took three shots and finished with two points. Maybe he knew he’d be playing 44 minutes. You can’t fault the rest of his game: 24 points, 10 boards, 12 assists with only three turnovers, and he became the second ranked all time player in playoff field goals made. Yet his body language in the third was demoralizing at times. Still, the team responded in that stretch and got him re-engaged. I just wish I knew where his three ball (0-4) went. Also, does he know how bad of a perimeter defender he’s become? He seems he routinely makes 2-3 awful closeouts per game that lead to buckets. Can anyone stop his spin move? I don’t think so.

Why is George Hill so damned passive at times? His passivity was a part of the Cavs problems in the first quarter, as he refused to attack the basket and just seems to have little confidence in his game. He finished with just seven and an assist.

Why the hell isn’t Larry Nance starting? Jeff Green is a freaking bench player and to be frank, I’d rather have Larry taking corner threes than Jeff. Larry defense is light years better (even though he is over-aggressive at times), and his chemistry on screens and rolls and high-lows with Love should be fantastic. And it’s not like this Indy lineup is one he can’t play against. Larry held his own in isolations against Oladipo and added two steals and a block to go along with 10 points and five rebounds.

Is Jose just too unathletic to play in this series? He went 0-3 with just one dime in his 9.5 minutes. Yet the Cavs were just -1 in that time. He still should’ve been playing when Hill went out.

Was Jordan Clarkson’s play an illusion?  Despite going 0-3 from downtown, he played in control and didn’t take bad shots. Though he only scored six, he was just -1 in his time on the floor. I thought he played some decent defense, but apparently the numbers tell a different story.

Still, the Cavs were at least mostly holding their own with him on the floor.

Should J.R. Smith be starting? He was the lone guy who was getting it done from outside. J.R. dropped 15 in 29 minutes and went 3-6 from downtown. Yeah, he got burned a lot on D, but Rodney Hood and George Hill seem terrified at times. And at least he competed at times on D.

Is Rodney Hood the same player who was just plain bad in Utah? Last year he was -.77 in RPM, and this year he was a -3.09 and that was almost all because of DRPM. I feel like I rarely see him make a play on that end of the court. He just seems kind of tall, skinny, and… there. Hood put up nine and two boards, but his passivity led to a terrible turnover at the end when he tried a wraparound pass to Nance instead of just laying it in. Rodney needs to play with an edge. He seems terrified most of the time.

What does Cedi have to do to get minutes? How can you not throw him out there for 15 minutes when Jeff Green is getting lost? How does Jeff Green get an endless amount of slack, and Cedi gets buried after missing some crunch time shots?

Does Ty Lue pay attention to what lineups are playing well, or does he just throw guys out there based on what’s going on in his head? Did the Cavs practice any plays? Cause it sure seems like they didn’t. Did Ty get any sleep last night? What is this new “totally different” defense we were supposed to see in the playoffs? To be honest, the defense wasn’t why the Cavs lost this one (though they did miss key stops), but doesn’t he realize that the fact that some of these lineups have barely played together is part of why the Cavs put up 16 turnovers? Why did the team look so unprepared? Do the Cavs just stink in afternoon games? Has a coach ever resigned after the first game of the playoffs?

Do the Cavs have an answer for Oladipo? He finished with 32 with six three pointers and 11-19 shooting. He added four steals, four dimes, and six rebounds. The Cavs did force him into a few turnovers, but the constant trapping isn’t going to work. Sabonis especially, is just too good on the short roll. Honestly, if he’s going to be out there, I don’t know why the Cavs didn’t try Jeff Green’s length on him. If George Hill isn’t going to score, siccing him on Vic wouldn’t be a bad idea either.

Are we all overreacting? There’s a certain fatalism that fans of this team have adopted. The Cavs are either awesome of the worst team ever in our eyes. Maybe this is just a bump in the road…

For the last two years, we’ve seen a Cavs squad that has underachieved in the regular season, and then totally “flipped the switch” in the playoffs. Though many thought this wasn’t sustainable, and that the years of the regular season informing the post-season were a false narrative as far as the Cavs were concerned, will this be the year that what people think they know in the regular season finally catches up to the Cavs? I hope not, but that game didn’t look good.

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p00dcast
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p00dcast
8 months 6 hours ago
Solid write-up, Nate – thanks! However, I have a somewhat different take… As a matter of fact, I have a SCORCHING HOT TAKE on Sunday’s game. Ready? Jeff Green was actually pretty good. Okay, hear me out… I went back and watched every play where he was on the floor the other day. I’d have to say his game was fine – I didn’t see any one specific mistake he made. Yes he was 0-7, but one of the shots (an open three) was in garbage time and two of them came when he was thrown the ball with no time on the clock. Of the other four, two of the shots were decent floaters at the rim that didn’t go. All his threes were open looks. All in all, not bad shot selection – just no luck getting them to go down. And as Ty Lue indicated, his defense was fine – never got mixed up or made a questionable decision about who to switch on to or how to play them. So I think he’s actually getting unfairly blamed on the basis of an 0-7 stat line. That said, Lue’s decision to have him camp out for a… Read more »
p00dcast
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p00dcast
8 months 6 hours ago

All that said, as a 30-35% three shooter if he were to start hitting that could change things, but who knows if that’ll happen.

I think Lue wanted him out there for defensive switches, but Indiana almost never got him switched onto the ballhandler. He can hold his own if they did, but they either were avoiding that or were trying to target other players with picks and screens. It may be just a coincidence, but it sure looks like Indy game-planned for him being out there playing big minutes and it worked to perfection.

Lue’s move now – let’s see what he does to respond (if anything!)…

JOHN B
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JOHN B
8 months 4 hours ago

Also definitely was a game plan. Certainly we had open shots, but it appeared Indy was playing almost a matchup zone/box and one when James had the ball in the post or on the wing. They appeared to shade closer to the paint with the guys who were covering guys like JR less than guys who were covering Green and Clarkson. Those guys were wide open multiple times. Korver and JR were covered much closer. Calderon seemed to have less time for his shots as well.

That scheme definitely could come back to bite them. But if guys start making threes, then they can just go to a more conservative approach.

JOHN B
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JOHN B
8 months 4 hours ago

I mean it might not be all his fault he was put in that position, but he is in it regardless and it doesn’t work. Indiana will not guard him in the corners. He is likely too inconsistent from there to compensate and create spacing. Subsequently, he is a net negative if just due to Indy’s scheme of leaving certain guys to pack the paint and cut off shots for better shooters. He would probably have to hit like four threes before they shaded closer to him.

If he isn’t on Dipo, no reason to start him over Nance. Plus his rebounding is problematic for us.

Anonymous
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Anonymous
8 months 9 hours ago

I totally thought the blazers would challenge for the conf finals. I still think they find a way to even this series at 2-2, but if they don’t start hitting their normal 30 foot threes in crunch time they are toast.

running jumper
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running jumper
8 months 9 hours ago

They overachieved imo. Dame and CJ are still terrible backcourt in terms of defense. If they blow it up, I’d like to snag CJ for the Nets pick.

Scotch
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Scotch
8 months 9 hours ago

I dont know…I dont think I’ve ever seen a more clutch backcourt duo. Even steph and Klay get tight…these two blazers are generally loose as a goose. They definitely have defensive issues dealing with Rondo and Holiday, but so do most teams. Honestly the pelicans have a secret big 3 right now…

running jumper
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running jumper
8 months 8 hours ago

Terry Stotts have a lot to say on their success. Dame and CJ can be as good as anyone on offense. I generally don’t care how they fair in these games. I just like how CJ could fit in our team and pdx might be interested in blowing it up since this is the peak of this roster. Shooting guard and center are major holes on ours and CJ is a liability on defense, but he is definitely a huge lift in creating offense by himself and his outside shooting is great. Also intrigued by Eric Gordon and LouWill but they’re older.

CLF
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CLF
8 months 7 hours ago

No way is now the “peak” of their roster. Nurkic is 23 years old. Collins is a rookie and potential stud, Connaughton’s young and ascending. Swanigan is good depth and a rookie. I agree with you that they over-acheived… but that’s because they’re young as hell.

Anonymous
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Anonymous
8 months 7 hours ago

I just kinda feel like they achieved, but i get your meaning. They are set up to succeed if they can find a rasheed wallace like piece…somebody big who can shoot from outside would open up their offense like crazy. They could function like a modern detroit billups/hamilton tandem.

CLF
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CLF
8 months 7 hours ago

Definitely… they’ve been in search of shooters for a couple of years now. I think Connaughton and Collins will be great shooters. I think the Evan Turner/Mo Harkless/Eminu triumverate could be improved upon greatly…. granted I know Harkless and Eminu had great shooting night tonight… but I wouldn’t trust those guys every night.

Scotch
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Scotch
8 months 7 hours ago

I think you gotta keep harkless and Aminu to sure up the d…Turner is the stopgap for them right now, as he has been since he got drafted for each team he has played on. Replace most of Turner’s mins with Vollins or Connaughton, or maybe they add a guy through the draft who plays like Ibaka or a better shooting Jonas Jerebko…they could make the leap

CLF
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CLF
8 months 6 hours ago

Totally right about Turner… and actually I thought Turner was one of the better players on the court in game 1.

CLF
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CLF
8 months 6 hours ago

I dig it.

Jason
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Jason
8 months 10 hours ago

Playoff Rondo!

Jason
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Jason
8 months 10 hours ago

Terrible D letting Jrue walk into a three.

Dame choking.

MikeO
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MikeO
8 months 10 hours ago

Blow for blow. Heck of a game.

MikeO
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MikeO
8 months 10 hours ago

Rondo having a pretty good game, even I’ll admit…Pels have defended Blazers pretty well…

Joeyb
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Joeyb
8 months 10 hours ago

I think lue had a nervous breakdown and isn’t well. That stuff about not playing his best lineup, the team being so out of it. It’s like they’re all looking at each other and realizing no one is driving the bus.

MikeO
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MikeO
8 months 10 hours ago

Blazers in trouble, down 9 in third, and look really disjointed on offense…

believeLAND
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believeLAND
8 months 11 hours ago

Wondering how New Orleans would fare against GSW

MikeO
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MikeO
8 months 11 hours ago

If GS is healthy, not well, I’m sure, but Davis and Holiday are potent…pretty fun team to watch right now…

believeLAND
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believeLAND
8 months 9 hours ago

Pelicans have some really good defensive pieces. I think they could challenge them.

MikeO
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MikeO
8 months 12 hours ago

Jrue looking good…heck of a put back slam…

MikeO
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MikeO
8 months 12 hours ago

Bucks have not played well, but Celtics scrubs and role players are hitting all the trash they’re tossing up.

MRP
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MRP
8 months 12 hours ago

if we lose again maybe it is time for lue to hand over the coaching duties to LeBron.. bron will surely make the difference in this playoff.

\"newnomad \"
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\"newnomad \"
8 months 13 hours ago

SCOTCH –totally agree– ( as most of us do )—-to see other teams / coaches develop their young talent during the season / playing time to be useful / productive come playoff time —–and then see ty “WASTE ‘ our youth on the bench—it is pathetic —-they have FRIGGIN 82 games to COACH these guys and ty always downplays that seeding isn’t that important —–THEN ANTE/ CEDI deserved minutes EVERY GAME —to grow / be ready for playoffs —–man not good for my indigestion to get upset like this before bedtime ——Evil where in the hell are you —WE NEED YOU MAN !

Jason
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Jason
8 months 10 hours ago

Yep. Lue/LeBron manage to simultaneously nit give a crap about the regular season AND not develop young players. Bravo!

ChrisKorvalier
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ChrisKorvalier
7 months 29 days ago

And have LeBron lead the league in minutes.

MikeO
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MikeO
8 months 13 hours ago

I know President Stevens’ team gets their hands in the passing lanes, etc, but the Bucks give them the ball like it’s their job.

Mike Podracky
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Mike Podracky
8 months 13 hours ago

After watching every other playoff matchup’ I think every team has played (win or lose) with more intensity and effort than the Cavs in Game One. And Lue is just sounding non -sensical about his plans for the rotations. Hood, Hill and Clarkson just have to step up. I think Love will be more aggressive as promised.

Scotch
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Scotch
8 months 13 hours ago

I guess we could be in a worse spot…we could be the bucks. They are drowning against a team of scrubs and rookies and al horford

CLF
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CLF
8 months 7 hours ago

LOL great point!

Scotch
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Scotch
8 months 13 hours ago

So I will definitely admit it is hard to watch young guys contribute with confidence around the league while our young guys were jerked around by the coaching staff so much this year they dont look comfortable doing anything. That’s a huge coaching issue

\"newnomad \"
Guest
\"newnomad \"
8 months 14 hours ago

ANYBODY WANT TO “REVISIT ‘ THE –T.T. / VALICUNIAS DEBATE ——–WOW NOT EVEN CLOSE —–“VAL ” WITH 19 PTS / 14 REB’S SO FAR TONIGHT —–PROBABLY HAS AT LEAST 6 GOOD YEARS LEFT IN HIM—-T.T. MEANWHILE —-WELL —CHINA OR G-LEAGUE LOOK PROMISING FOR YOU

Scotch
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Scotch
8 months 13 hours ago

Dont think you can predict 6 more good years…but yeah he is currently more reliable than TT. But TT is a starter and conteibutor on an NBA champion…so the scales are still fluxuating. I think tt is out of the league in 2-3 too

\"newnomad \"
Guest
\"newnomad \"
8 months 14 hours ago

true to his form ( being a professional —–fall guy )—klove takes blame for the few touches he had in game 1—-and yes I mentioned / blogged yesterday about ” ty’s not playing jis best 5 guys yet “—-WTF ARE YOU WAITING FOR YOU ——–HOLE —-THESE ARE THE FRIGGIN PLAYOFFS ——-THE GUY KEEPS ON ” MAKING LAME EXCUSES TO BUY TIME —–TY —-‘TYME IS RUNNING OUT —–PUT UP OR SHUT UP “

JoeyB
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JoeyB
8 months 16 hours ago

Trying to decide if the Sixers will be my second favorite team when Lebron signs there next year or if I’ll be too bummed. I think I’ll try to enjoy it this time – I refused to watch him play for four straight years when he was in Miami.

Anonymous
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Anonymous
8 months 18 hours ago

IF you haven’t read Zach Lowe’s article:

‘• Jeff Green was awful, and it wouldn’t surprise me if Lue yanks him from the starting five, or at least pulls him earlier. The Cavs can’t run an optimal spread pick-and-roll with Green on the wing, because the defense ignores him. He’s not an accomplished pick-and-roll screener, so they can’t adjust by using him that way. The Pacers are hiding Myles Turner on him, which has the ripple effect of slotting two like-sized players — Bogdanovic and Thaddeus Young — on LeBron and Love, neutering that pick-and-roll combination.’

http://www.espn.com/nba/story/_/id/23207443/zach-lowe-nba-playoff-game-2-watch-round-1

Jason
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Jason
8 months 14 hours ago

Lowe obviously doesn’t know the depth of Lue’s man-crush on Green or his coaching negligence.

Adjust? Please.

Anonymous
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Anonymous
8 months 14 hours ago

Even the best of the coaches can get lineup wrong but adjust on the fly which Lue didn’t look like capable of. It didn’t work but Pops started Gay in 2nd half seeing how over matched K Anderson looked in 1st game against warriors and spurs played much better in 2nd half after that adjustment.

Anonymous
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Anonymous
8 months 18 hours ago

Ty Lue is crowing about a secret best five-man lineup the Cavs didn’t use in Game 1. Umm, the playoffs started. The Pacers smacked Cleveland with a level of intensity these Cavs have never displayed. Might want to ratchet things up, guys.

Raoul
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Raoul
8 months 17 hours ago

That is another problem with Lue, he says dumb stuff. He sounds like a kid lying to his mother.

\"newnomad \"
Guest
\"newnomad \"
8 months 20 hours ago

his one big adjustment was ‘draymond getting suspended “—-ty received WAY TOO MUCH CREDIT FOR BEING THE HEAD COACH OF THAT CHAMPIONSHIP TEAM——-HE IS OUTCOACHED ALMOST EVERY GAME ———RAOUL SAID IT BEST YESTERDAY WE LOSE THE NEXT GAME —RETIRE TY TO ‘WATCHING FILM “

CLF
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CLF
8 months 7 hours ago

Yup. LBJ and Kyrie won that ring. Period.

Raoul
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Raoul
8 months 17 hours ago

Agree. Someone replied that removing Lue at 0-2 “would look desperate”. Well, being 0-2 IS desperate! We cannot let the season (and probably LeBron) slip away just to not look desperate.

I hope the Browns think similarly. They already rehired Hue to not look desperate, despite his repeated blunders. If he can demonstrate competence with the new players, I would keep him. But if he goes back to blundering, he should get retired after a couple games.

JB225
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JB225
8 months 22 hours ago

I watch the Celtics, Warriors, Spurs and other well coached teams run great plays out of time outs and on critical situations and I have come to the conclusion that the 2016-17 championship was solely wan due to the brilliant play of Kyrie and Bron.
When you watch games 5-7 from that series there was not a lot of offensive plays ran it was all Kyrie and Bron scoring or assisting most of the game.

JRL
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JRL
8 months 21 hours ago

Oh definitely.

Can anyone point to any type of critical adjustment during that series(or any playoff series for that matter) that Lue made which resulted in a win?

Lue is a subpar coach. He shouldn’t be the head coach on a championship or bust team.

Raoul
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Raoul
8 months 17 hours ago

Lue actually DID run some excellent plays out of timeouts in previous playoffs. That is the only thing he appears to be at least average at.

JOHN B
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JOHN B
8 months 16 hours ago

He is pretty good at out of timeout sets. Why he can’t translate basic actions into the halfcourt of a full game is totally inexplicable save perhaps Lebron’s possible antipathy towards running a set offense.

Arch Stanton
Member
Arch Stanton
8 months 22 hours ago

Greg DeSylva
Guest
Greg DeSylva
8 months 1 day ago

Help me out here guys! Why doesn’t LeBron ever seem to take pull-up jumpers? Seems like it’s either full steam ahead into heavy traffic or dish to Love, Smith & co. for a three. Might he surprise the D and change the game if he stopped and popped a 2 once in a while?

Vintage
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Vintage
8 months 23 hours ago

Also it’s inenefficient analytics wise if he can get to the rim seemingly at will or if he can get it out to one of the shooters for 3

Vintage
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Vintage
8 months 1 day ago

While it certainly isn’t my money to dish out, I guess I never really looked into coaches’ contracts until this morning (data according to HoopsHype):

Lue – 5 year/$35M
Carlisle – 5 year/$35M
SVG – 5 year/$35M
Kerr – 5 year/$25M
Stevens – 6 year/$22M (unspecified 3 year extension)
D’Antoni – 4 year/$20M
Thibs – 4 year/$40M
Pop – 5 year/$55M
Rivers – 5 year/$50M
Spoelstra – couldn’t find

Wasn’t the narrative when he got promoted to head coach that he had the cache to actually hold LeBron & co accountable? Also, his main message for the last several years has essentially been “be aggressive” – what does it say about him when the Cavs come out in Game 1 and are anything but that?

MRP
Guest
MRP
8 months 13 hours ago

lue is surely overrated and over paid

MikeO
Guest
MikeO
8 months 1 day ago

I don’t think there is any coach in the world who can hold Lebron ‘accountable’. Best you can hope is to have someone he can get along with, and I suppose that’s why Lue has the job.

JB225
Guest
JB225
8 months 1 day ago

Men I saw the way the Heat played defense yesterday against the Sixers and how the Warriors – Spurs went at each other and I feel that on a scale of 1-10 (with the Warriors being the 10) the Cavs are like at 5 right now.
If they don’t begin to take this seriously and improve soon they might be headed into an early playoff exit.

JRL
Guest
JRL
8 months 1 day ago

Wether due to LeBron or not, we don’t have a coach that will hold the players accountable for their lack of effort.

There were plenty of games during the regular season that LeBron should had gotten benched for his complete lack of giving a F about the outcome of the game.

I also don’t doubt he threw a few games out of malice against IT and Crowder. Specially considering how his shooting percentage drastically changed from olthe game before the Minnesota one when he knew IT was going to be traded.

Besides Love, Jose and KK, we have a bunch of followers and no leaders. They see LeBron not care and they do the same.

Raoul
Guest
Raoul
8 months 17 hours ago

Don’t forget LeBron has played more minutes than anyone in history and is about the oldest guy out.

JB225
Guest
JB225
8 months 22 hours ago

I agree with you even about LeBron giving a few games away just for showing his discontent with IT and others.

John B
Guest
John B
8 months 22 hours ago

I am guessing their criticisms had more to do with a complete lack of any offensive system and set plays and the utter disorganized and nonsensical defensive schemes. After all IT and Crowder came from a system in Boston where they actually had plays to run and didn’t just have to rely on reacting to LBJ.

JRL
Guest
JRL
8 months 1 day ago

It’s funny how no one mentioned needing Embiid after the first game but now that’s all the players are saying. Take the loss and regroup. Stop making excuses.

blip
Guest
blip
8 months 1 day ago

Perhaps cuz they didn’t need him during game 1, and could have used him for game 2? Just a guess.

JB225
Guest
JB225
8 months 1 day ago

The Heat under Spoelstra have always played solid defense and they did a great job yesterday against all of the Sixers shooters.

MikeO
Guest
MikeO
8 months 1 day ago

It’s always harder when you’re not hitting a billion threes at a 55% clip…

JB225
Guest
JB225
8 months 1 day ago

Exactly, the way they were shooting the ball they looked like the Warriors lol.

Johnny_Lately
Guest
Johnny_Lately
8 months 1 day ago

Thanks for the recap — we need actual basketball analysis more than ever! ESPN is basically WWF/reality TV/soap opera nonsense — more time spent analysing a single social media post by Joel Embid or someTV production company going after LeBron (seriously, does anyone give a s**** about that?) than analysing games / strategies / performance. Zach Lowe doesn’t count in this analysis BTW. I miss reading Jason Lloyd in Akron Beacon Journal.

Peter
Guest
Peter
8 months 1 day ago

The fact that Wade, Crowder and even Rose and IT are thriving in their new teams to me is an indictment of Lue’s coaching.

Jason
Guest
Jason
8 months 1 day ago

Crowder shot worse in Utah than he did here. He just got more shots so his ppg was higher.

IT improved as his legs got better, but was still pretty inefficient.

Wade was good while he was here.

Rose got hurt after like 7 games.

Still agree on Lue.

Scotch
Guest
Scotch
8 months 1 day ago

IT is not thriving, first of all, and those guys all had a few decent games for us but I would say thriving is a bit prisoner of the moment thought

RightDownEuclid (the first)
Guest
RightDownEuclid (the first)
8 months 1 day ago

Wade not playing drastically different. At times he was very good for us. It’s not a surprise he’s showing up in the playoffs. Rose playing as much as he is is an indictment of Thib’s coaching

CLF
Guest
CLF
8 months 1 day ago

Wade with a pure dagger J.

Jason
Guest
Jason
8 months 1 day ago

Looks like Miami is going to hold on. This series officially on.

RightDownEuclid (the first)
Guest
RightDownEuclid (the first)
8 months 1 day ago

honestly we should have kept wade

Jason
Guest
Jason
8 months 1 day ago

Yep. It was a nice thing we did. And his heart just was not in it as much away from Miami.

MikeO
Guest
MikeO
8 months 1 day ago

He’s been really good tonight, but he can also easily put up a big stinker…but he’s been mostly old skool Wade tonight…

Right Down Euclid
Guest
Right Down Euclid
8 months 1 day ago

I think he would have been more plus than minus in the playoffs. He’s still a gamer

Jason
Guest
Jason
8 months 1 day ago

Agreed.

MikeO
Guest
MikeO
8 months 1 day ago

Nice run by Heat…

CLF
Guest
CLF
8 months 1 day ago

Happened as soon as Wade came off the bench for his breather.

CLF
Guest
CLF
8 months 1 day ago

Wade orchestrating out here…

CLF
Guest
CLF
8 months 1 day ago

I can’t believe they didn’t call a foul on Saric.. after the Sixers got the same call a few minutes ago.

MikeO
Guest
MikeO
8 months 1 day ago

It hasn’t been home cooking, but Sixers have had some love from the refs in this game…

MikeO
Guest
MikeO
8 months 1 day ago

2 freebies for the Sixers, when Heat should have had two easy points the other way…hope that doesn’t cost them…

warriorsfan
Guest
warriorsfan
8 months 1 day ago

Miami has high IQ players in Wade, James Johnson, Dragic, Tyler and Winslow. I don’t think they are going to lose this game.

MikeO
Guest
MikeO
8 months 1 day ago

Within four now…need to make some shots…frankly, Olynyk needs to shoot if he has a look from three…

RightDownEuclid (the first)
Guest
RightDownEuclid (the first)
8 months 1 day ago

The Philly arena experience is just terrible so many obnoxious sound effects and terrible annoucer. Was same story in early 2000s when I was in college there

CLF
Guest
CLF
8 months 1 day ago

Redick with a poor play…. should’ve passed it back to Belinelli on the break.

CLF
Guest
CLF
8 months 1 day ago

WOW Wade just missed his easiest shot of the night I think.

MikeO
Guest
MikeO
8 months 1 day ago

Vintage Wade…

MikeO
Guest
MikeO
8 months 1 day ago

I like Winslow…if the Cavs had traded Kyrie for Dragic, Winslow, and whatever for Kyrie, I think it might have been a good trade…Winslow might be really good in a year or two…

CLF
Guest
CLF
8 months 1 day ago

His shooting has come more slowly than I expected. But I still think he’ll be a star…. he’s so young… not even sure if he can drink legally lol.

MikeO
Guest
MikeO
8 months 1 day ago

He has everything but the shot…I like Josh Jackson, and I think Winslow is more promising than him…

CLF
Guest
CLF
8 months 1 day ago

He was such a good 3pt shooter at Duke… but weirdly he was horrible from the FT line.

Interesting…. I like your take, hard for me to judge being a Duke fan.

Jason
Guest
Jason
8 months 1 day ago

Heat playing some serious D. Philly fans are awful.

MikeO
Guest
MikeO
8 months 1 day ago

Heat playing a solid game, up 12.

JOHN B
Guest
JOHN B
8 months 1 day ago

Man philly fans are brutal. Read the sixers got booed off the floor after a bad quarter and only being down 14 at the half. Wonder what they would have done had they been cavs fans yesterday being down 20 in the first.

MikeO
Guest
MikeO
8 months 1 day ago

If Whiteside can’t shut down Simmons in the paint, I don’t see that he brings much to the Heat in this series…some defensive rebounding, that’s about it.

MikeO
Guest
MikeO
8 months 1 day ago

Nice half by the Heat…they played some serious defense, and Sixers aren’t hitting every three they toss up, as they did in game 1…

Jason
Guest
Jason
8 months 1 day ago

Playoff WADE! 21 pts on 8-9 FGs at half.

Nice to see Wade play well.

Jason
Guest
Jason
8 months 1 day ago

I hope Miami can take at least one game before Embiid gets back.

Plus, it will make G3 in Miami more interesting. Some heat on the young guys.

MikeO
Guest
MikeO
8 months 1 day ago

Vintage freaking Wade…he’s on fire…

MikeO
Guest
MikeO
8 months 1 day ago

Not much in the NBA gives me more pleasure than seeing an egregious flopper like Ilyasova get the block call and give up the three point play…

MikeO
Guest
MikeO
8 months 1 day ago

Gotta say, the Sixers are really getting the better of the calls in this half…

CLF
Guest
CLF
8 months 1 day ago

DWade makeup call there lol

MikeO
Guest
MikeO
8 months 1 day ago

Yeah, that was terrible…they need to remove that crap from the game…

Mike Podracky
Guest
Mike Podracky
8 months 1 day ago

Miami playing some serious defense. Haven’t seen that level of intensity from the Cavs all year

Jason
Guest
Jason
8 months 1 day ago

Cedi & Nance are the only semi intense guys we have. Maybe Zizic.

JB225
Guest
JB225
8 months 1 day ago

Exactly, if the Cavs could defend like that they would be really hard to beat even in shooting nights like the one they had yesterday.

CLF
Guest
CLF
8 months 1 day ago

Had a feeling Philly would struggle tonight. If they lose this game, really curious how the rest of the series plays out. Maybe believing their own press clippings too much.

Jason
Guest
Jason
8 months 1 day ago

Is there word on when Embiid comes back?

MikeO
Guest
MikeO
8 months 1 day ago

Maybe game 3…he has passed concussion protocol…

CLF
Guest
CLF
8 months 1 day ago

I think he had already passed but they’re taking extra pre-caution???

MikeO
Guest
MikeO
8 months 1 day ago

Embiid makes them better, but it may interupt the flow they have had going with their current lineups…

JB225
Guest
JB225
8 months 1 day ago

Exactly, they were playing at a great pace, hard to defend.

MikeO
Guest
MikeO
8 months 1 day ago

Winslow annoying Simmons on D…

CLF
Guest
CLF
8 months 1 day ago

and threw up a prayer!!!

MikeO
Guest
MikeO
8 months 1 day ago

Ilyasova has just been murdering the Heat…

Jason
Guest
Jason
8 months 1 day ago

Dude can play. Not athletic enough for Ty. He would sit while Jeff & TT played instead.

MikeO
Guest
MikeO
8 months 1 day ago

Hard to believe Riley gave Whiteside that awful contract. Might be the worst contract he ever dealt.

MikeO
Guest
MikeO
8 months 1 day ago

Fratello doing color for the Sixers-Heat game.

\"newnomad \"
Guest
\"newnomad \"
8 months 1 day ago

WELL TY —WTF ARE YOU WAITING FOR ————OLD SAYING —-“TALK IS CHEAP “—–IT IS TIME TO DELIVER TY

\"newnomad \"
Guest
\"newnomad \"
8 months 1 day ago

hey LeBron’s career is NOT over —-might be a HUGE part of his decision this summer —play for a LEGITIMATE GOOD NBA COACH

CLF
Guest
CLF
8 months 1 day ago

What’s sad about LBJ is Eric Spoelstra will be the best coach LBJ plays for in his NBA career…. by far.

believeLAND
Guest
believeLAND
8 months 1 day ago

Yea, it really is sad. Wish he played with a great coach in a great system. But he himself has a lot to do with that not happening. And how weak minded this organization is to bend to his every whim.

CLF
Guest
CLF
8 months 1 day ago

Yup… that story Riley told was telling… basically had to put LBJ in his place, and once he did, LBJ fell in line.

I feel like Griffin should’ve done that with Blatt. I think a Blatt/Lue combo would’ve been a great bad cop/good cop tandem… and Blatt actually has an offensive system.

CLF
Guest
CLF
8 months 1 day ago

I know more than one person has said that about Blatt… just don’t buy it though given what I’ve seen and heard from him, which is admittedly limited.

John B
Guest
John B
8 months 1 day ago

Griffin didn’t have the gravitas that Riley did at that time. Part of the deal with lbj coming back was basically him chafing under Riley and going to a place where he had more influence.

CLF
Guest
CLF
8 months 1 day ago

True.

Leo
Guest
Leo
8 months 1 day ago

heard that the starting 5 Cavs had yesterday NEVER played together once prior to first game of playoffs hahaha….how does that happen and why? its like putting a staff together thats never worked once with each other in a high stress environment and you hope they succeed….hopefully Lue gets his shit together and expands rotation to 10….shit even give Cedi and Calderon like 5 min a piece wouldn’t hurt them.

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