The Cavaliers came out in this one sloppy, sluggish, and looking almost confused. It was an alarming start and most fans watching braced themselves for a long night. Little did we know how great of a game we were in for.
Kyrie Irving absolutely willed his team to life. In a breakout 1st quarter, Irving had 16 points to wake his team up and spark energy and belief into his team. And all of this against Chris Paul none the less. It was blossoming leadership and it was inspiring to watch.
The bench unit sans Luke Walton would actually manage to sustain the lead and when the starters took over, they were able to carry a 7 point lead into halftime.
In the 2nd half, though, it was the Dion Waiters show. The rookie went 7-11 from three to lead all scorers with 28 points. Waiters showed supreme confidence and star quality throughout the 2nd half. Kyrie Irving, who finished with 24 points of his own, seemed content to ride the hot hand in Waiters and again, showed great leadership in not trying to take the offensive focus away from Waiters.
There were so many positives in this game. Kyrie Irving’s clutch 3 to ice the game. Anderson Varejao with another double-double with 15 points and 15 boards. Tyler Zeller with a breakout game (15 points, 7 rebounds) before having to leave after taking an elbow to the face. CJ Miles with a big 10 points off the bench and some strong defensive plays. I could go on and on, but we’ll save it for tomorrow’s recap. For now, just enjoy this one, Cavs fans.
|Percentages||.435||.483||.636||Team Rebounds: 14|
|O. Casspi||DNP – Coach’s Decision|
|J. Leuer||DNP – Coach’s Decision|
|L. Walton||DNP – Coach’s Decision|
|Percentages||.527||.360||.875||Team Rebounds: 2|