Tuesday, November 11

L-Train Throws the Hammer Down

On paper, this game had all the makings of a blow-out.

The Cleveland Cavaliers (5-2), atop the Central Divsion, at home against the last place Milwaukee Bucks (3-4). To add insult to injury for the Bucks, Michael Redd was watching this game from the bench in a suit.

Cleveland fans are too familiar with games their teams "should" have won this year. Reflections of the 2008 Indians and Browns began to fill my head when the 4th quarter began and the undermanned Bucks were within three points.

This is when the Cavs showed fans that they are far above the level of the other two Cleveland teams. LeBron James heated up at the right time, scoring 12 fourth quarter points to finish the night with 41 points for the third time in this young season. Anderson Varejao also continued his late-game dominance with eight points and six rebounds in the fourth.

When the final buzzer sounded, the score read Cavs 99, Bucks 93. Though, the coming months will reveal the true story of this game.

To pull out a victory on an off-night is reassuring. Certainly the best teams find a way to win even on bad nights, right?

However, this game was at home, the Cavs have had two full days rest. More concerning is that they also barely won at home over Indiana last week. Neither the Bucks nor the Pacers were playoff teams last season, and will likely both be lottery teams again this year.

Maybe Indiana and Milwaukee were playing "lights out." Champions find a way to win, and the Cavs definitely won games that were closer than they should have been. Or is this the start of an undesirable trend? Only time (and stronger teams) will tell.

Spread the Love

Despite LeBron James lighting it up for 41 points, the Cavs still finished the game with five players scoring in double digits.

Zydrunas Ilgauskas and Anderson Varejao each had double-doubles, while Ben Wallace continued to ignore the basket.

You can book this one to the Cavaliers...

When Richard Jefferson's bad pass resulted in a Wally Szczerbiak steal. LeBron James dribbled out the shot clock before missing an off-balance three. Anderson Varejao secured the offensive rebound and Mo Williams ulimately hit two free-throws with one-minute remaining to give the cavs a 10-point lead.

24-second violation

LeBron James and the Cavs showed class by taking a 24-second violation with 4.7 seconds remaining in the game instead of firing up a shot to potentially extend their seven-point lead. It shows how far this team has come under the leadership of Mike Brown.

Does anybody else remember when DeSagana Diop fired up a three as time ran down to try to win the fans a free chalupa by eclipsing the 100-point barrier?

Paxson's picks

Noticed this in the Top Performers section of the ESPN NBA Scores page.

We're Going Streaking

The Cavs have now won five games in a row, matching their longest winning streak from last year. This might be the season that they finally surpass the elusive franchise record 11-game winning streak.

The Cavs better be ready to strap one on for Denver and Utah later this week.

1 comment:

Andy said...

Nice title. AC was ridiculous last night. He said some really dumb stuff at the start but picked it up later. He said that exploiting a mismatch was something "an old school team" does, which is flat-out dumb because everyone, everywhere does that. He said the Cavs' mindset is different this year because they "want to win" as if they wanted to lose last year. Plus the customary overuse of "aggressive" and pointing out that they "want to get off to a good start," which is true of every team in every game in every sport. Ridiculous.

That having been said: "The L-Train! From deep! In the Q!"