Posts Tagged ‘c.j. miles’

BKN 103, CLE 100

Saturday, December 29th, 2012

Deron Williams played shut down D.

I tried writing the beginning of this recap a hundred times before I had any idea what to write. I still don’t, really. The Cavs keeping piling up losses, but it’s not the W-L column that hurts. It’s the individual defeats. I know that every team in the NBA loses, and the close ones are supposed to hurt. But man, was this one tough.

First Quarter: Brook Lopez, master purveyor of the flat-footed hook shot, dominated Tyler Zeller, he of the weak chest and propensity to be pushed around. Dominated to the tune of 19 points. Kyrie was out of sync early, and this one looked real ugly until C.J. Miles started raining threes. BKN 34, CLE 24

Second Quarter: Kyrie Irving remained mediocre. C.J. Miles, thankfully, remained supernova. His jumper has looked decidedly silky as of late, hasn’t it? The defensive effort by the Cavs in these 12 minutes was nothing short of horrendous. Jerry Stackhouse was hitting open jumpers, Marshon Brooks was getting gifted all sorts of open looks–hell, even Andray Blatche hit a three. BKN 61, CLE 53.

Third Quarter: Ew. The third quarter basically consisted of the Cavs and the Nets both missing a ton of shots, until the Cavs missed a few less shots near the end and somehow ended the period only down by five. But hey! Kyrie Irving hit two free throws, just in case, you know, you forgot he did anything other than miss contested jumpers over Deron Williams. Also, Gerald Wallace is a lot of fun to watch play basketball. He just kind of runs around and bangs into everyone, all the time. Also, Luke Walton is Bizzaro Gerald Wallace in every sense. The two of them exist to be polar opposites Neither can live while the other survives. BKN 79, CLE 74.

Fourth Quarter: Tristan Thompson and C.J. Miles were heroic, picking up the slack we sorely needed while Kyrie uncharacteristically continued to suck. They combined for 19 in the fourth, and seemed like the only Cavs interested in winning the game. Tristan, especially, showed fantastic effort on both sides of the floor, all the while rebounding like a maniac. His tip-dunk with a minute left cut the lead to three was unbelievable, and would have been Andy-esque, if Andy could jump that high. At the very end, Kyrie hit a three-pointer to cut the lead to one. Joe Johnson hit a pair, and Kyrie’s last heave rimmed out. BKN 103, CLE 100. Ballgame.

Player of the Game: Tristan Thompson had 17 and 15, with a pair of blocks and only one missed free throw. He was fantastic, and the big games have been coming often enough recently to convince me that he’s a really valuable piece for the future. He’s not nearly as good as J.J. Hickson, though…JOKE.

Highlights: Alonzo Gee continuing to get one breakaway steal-to-dunk a game, Tristan Thompson being a total beast, C.J. Miles unleashing high-volume efficiency on the Nets, Tyler Zeller on offense, did I mention Tristan Thompson?

Lowlights: Tyler Zeller on defense, Kyrie Irving on defense, Kyrie Irving on offense, Reggie Evans suddenly becoming an effective offensive weapon, Byron Scott’s rotations.

General Notes: In case you hadn’t noticed, Byron Scott lives to confound Cavs fans with his unfathomable, ridiculous Kyrie Irving Playing Time methodology. As much as Kyrie sucked this game, there was no reason for Scott to hold him out for the first five minutes of the fourth. Our offense is stagnant without Kyrie in there, and the non-Kyrie effect is larger by several orders of magnitude in the final frame, when defense buckles down. Now, should our 20 year-old star be playing 40 minutes a game? No, but there are ways to stagger minutes, and I’d much rather have Kyrie miss a few minutes earlier in the game, if it meant he could play more of the fourth. We would have been down by a lot more when he came in if it weren’t for a few unlikely Jeremy Pargo plays. C’mon, Byron.

Also: Luke Walton was one of only three players to post a positive +/- for the night, but he didn’t pass the eye test. Everyone raves about his passing, but Walton tries a little too hard to thread the needle, and often passes up good looks to further his Steve Nash-without-foot speed impersonation. 30 minutes? C’mon, Byron.

You are Well Below Par(go)

Wednesday, November 21st, 2012

Unbelievable. That’s the word for it. An out-of-the-blue win for the Cavs, after losing leading scorer Kyrie Irving to injury. Jeremy Pargo, first of all, deserves most of the credit for the win. This third-string point guard, this young, unproven player who Byron Scott only promoted to starter the day of the game, showed some serious offensive chops. He hit jumpers from all over the floor, got to the rack with ease, and set up his teammates fairly well all game. Final stats: 28 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists. He also played great defense, going hard in man-on-man D when matched up with Jrue Holiday or Evan Turner and racking up a steal and a few tipped balls. The other, less surprising, star of this game was Anderson Varejao. He locked down the post, grabbed nineteen boards (7 offensive!) and was generally awesome as usual. Dion Waiters played alright, if inefficiently. He only shot 7-22 from the field, but Dion also put up 6 assists to 2 turnovers and played solid defense. However, the Cavs have had some great individual performances this year in losses. Remember the game in Brooklyn? What made this one different was the bench. C.J. Miles and co. had their best performance of the year by far. Details later. Some bullet points on the game:

- Jeremy Pargo could be the backup point guard the Cavs have been looking for. Obviously we can’t expect him to score like this on a nightly basis, but anything near this type of offensive punch might be just what the Cavs need off the bench when Kyrie comes back. His jumper was clearly falling tonight (4-8 on 3-pointers) at an unsustainable rate, but that’s not really what matters. He was getting to the hole with remarkable consistency against a solid defensive team, and an athletic backcourt. That type of penetration led to open shots on the perimeter for the Cavs all night, and it made a huge difference for the second unit. The open 3-pointers were a world apart from the contested fade-aways that the Cavs had been getting with Donald Sloan on the floor. Let’s hope Pargo keeps it up.

- C.J. Miles may have just broken out of his slump in a big way. The release on his jumper still seems a little slow, but he was hitting it with regularity tonight, and he looked much more comfortable in the offense. If his perimeter play can remain close to this for the rest of the season, the team will be helped tremendously. Omri Casspi also looked decent, though he’s clearly still dealing with some shaky nerves. He seemed to lack confidence in his dribbling and shooting. In short, he played much like I did on the 7th grade basketball team. Needless to say, I played sparingly. As does he. I think that Byron Scott hasn’t been entirely fair in his treatment of Casspi, and while Kyrie is out, I would like to see him get some actual run.

- Tristan Thompson was pretty awful, unfortunately, but his line wasn’t anything remotely surprising. He rebounded well, played solid defense, and shot 1-7 from the field. We won, so I’ll try and keep this positive. He made 2-3 free throws! Someone call Rick Barry! Tyler Zeller was slightly worse, but I think he wore his gas-mask a little more jauntily than Tristan, so props to him. Any ideas for nicknames as long as they still both have the masks?

- Alonzo Gee dropped 14 points and shot 5-9 from the field, 4-6 from 3-point range, and played some truly spectacular defense. in particular, there was a fastbreak block that needs to be seen to be believed. Really, exactly the kind of game Chris Grant payed him for. If he can keep putting up numbers like this, and playing defense the way he does, we can all pretend like we’ve never heard of Nicolas Batum before.

-Luke Walton did not play tonight. Hallelujah. Byron Scott, thank you.

Wine v. Gold Scrimmage

Saturday, October 6th, 2012

Dion to the hoop!

The Cavaliers played an intra-squad scrimmage Saturday, pitting Anderson Varejao, Tristan Thompson, Jeremy Pargo, Omri Casspi and C.J. Miles on the Gold team against Kyrie Irving, Dion Waiters, Tyler Zeller, Alonzo Gee and Jon Leuer on the Wine team. The Gold team won 52-44, despite a combined 25 points on 9-22 shooting from Kyrie Irving and Dion Waiters. What does this mean? Absolutely nothing. But it’s nice to see the young guns going at it in practice. Here’s the link.

Small Forwards and Health

Thursday, October 4th, 2012

That goatee is fantastic.

The Chronicle Online wrote a nice piece about the Cavs’ depth at the small forward position this year. I don’t really think that Omri Casspi counts as depth, exactly, but hey- to each man his own. And C.J. Miles just keeps coming through on the quotes. Here’s the link.

Also, a promising article from the Plain Dealer about the health of the team this year going into training camp. From Kyrie: “I’m 110 percent. No problems. I’ve been playing since the 15th of September. I’m just really excited to start training camp.” That’s nice to hear, isn’t it? Here’s the link.

On a side note, I think we can all agree that Kyrie NEEDS to maintain that goatee. It’s perfect. For all we know, this is the adjustment he needed to make “The Leap.”

Cavaliers Talkin’

Monday, August 27th, 2012

I’m starting to like C.J. Miles more and more. What he says about joining the Cavs: “With Cleveland it was just about making the right basketball decision for myself. I felt it wasn’t about money; it wasn’t about anything but basketball.” A  very positive interview overall, from Hoopsworld. Here’s the link .

Dion Waiters was also interviewed recently, though it didn’t turn out half as interesting. He’s pretty good at substituting sports cliches in lieu of actual meaning. It’s nice he bought his mom a car after being drafted, at least. Here’s the link.