Cleveland Cavaliers Weekly: A Winless Week for the Cavs

After a bad previous week, the Cleveland Cavaliers could not find a way to right things in this past terrible week of basketball where they lost three straight games. They have lost eight of 10 games, with the only two victories occurring in tense overtime, and now sit at 4-10. Luckily for them, the rest of the Eastern Conference has been pretty horrendous outside of the Pacers and Heat, so they still have a very realistic shot at the playoffs. Still, this is not a good basketball team by any means, and they haven’t shown any signs that they are close to getting on track,

Nov. 20 vs. Wizards, Loss 98-91

The final score lies; this game was not very close most of the way. Through three quarters, the Wizards led 80-59. The Cavs made a furious fourth quarter comeback, pulling within four points, only to ultimately fall by seven points.

Outside of Kyrie Irving, who scored 28 points on 9-of-14 shooting, the starters contributed nothing this night. Tristan Thompson, Andrew Bynum, C.J. Miles and Earl Clark went a combined 2-for-15 for seven points. Anderson Varejao and Jarrett Jack helped bring the Cavs back into the game, each dropping 14 points off the bench. The Wizards never completely overmatched the Cavs; instead, it was the team’s putrid offense that once again created an insurmountable deficit.

Nov. 22 at Pelicans, Loss 104-100

The Cavs hit the road, where they have struggled this season, traveling to New Orleans to take on the basketball team formerly known as the Hornets. The Cavaliers led with as few as 44 seconds left, but a 3-pointer by Eric Gordon and free throws from Jrue Holiday and Tyreke Evans sealed the victory for the Pelicans. The Pelicans’ guards all played very effectively: Gordon and Evans both scored a team-high 19 points; Holiday had 15 points and 11 assists in the win. The Pelicans outscored the Cavs by 13 in the second half, after originally trailing by 10.

Dion Waiters continued to come off the bench, and had one of his better games. He went 5-for-9 from the field for 14 points. Jack also came off the bench to score 19 points off the bench. One of the Cavs’ biggest issues this game was their proclivity for fouling. The Pelicans attempted 33 free throws, just more than double as many as the Cavaliers, who only shot 16.

Nov. 23 at Spurs, Loss 126-96

Basketball does not often get as ugly as this game. The Spurs routed the Cavs 126-96, opening the floodgates by outscoring the Cavs by 24 in the second quarter. The Spurs drained 16 3-pointers and received contributions from the entire team, literally. Every player clocked in at least 11 minutes and scored six points, with Danny Green leading San Antonio with 17 points.

One of the most telling things about the game was how coach Mike Brown used No. 1 draft pick Anthony Bennett. Bennett did not touch the floor until the fourth quarter, with the Cavs already trailing by 29 points. In 12 minutes, he scored nine points and grabbed five rebounds, but also amazingly turned the ball over five times. The fact that Bennett remained on the bench until the fourth quarter says volumes of how Brown and the rest of the Cavs organization thinks of him. Brown wouldn’t even bring Bennett into a game that was out of reach in the second quarter; it’s pretty obvious that the franchise has begun to think of him as a failure.

LeBron James

He’s coming home. Photo Credit: Keith Allison (Flickr.com)

The Week Ahead

  • Wednesday Nov 27, vs. Heat
  • Friday Nov. 29, at Celtics
  • Saturday Nov. 30, vs. Bulls

The Celtics and Bulls are both playing mediocre basketball, and in theory those are winnable games for the Cavs. But those games have little importance compared to the one on Wednesday night. When LeBron comes home, it always is must watch game. It just couldn’t come at a worse time for the Cavs.

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