July 24, 2014

Box Score: Cavaliers 78, Grizzlies 84

This one stings a bit.

The Memphis Grizzlies, without starting PG Mike Conley, came out torching the Cavaliers’ defense on their first few possessions. It looked like it could be a predictably rough game. But then Anderson Varejao went to work. Andy started rebounding like a man possessed and ignited the Cavaliers to take the first quarter lead.

In fact, the Cavaliers would win each of the first 3 quarters behind Varejao and some of the best team defense the team has played all season. Unfortunately, they lost the quarter that matters the most, and the Grizzlies were able to play lights out defense down the stretch and steal a hard fought win from the Cavaliers.

There’s so much to be proud of in the way Cleveland played in this game, in particular Varejao who dominated arguably the Western Conference’s best frontcourt. Sure, the Grizzlies missed Mike Conley who sat with the flu, but the Cavaliers still forced one of the best offenses in the NBA to easily their lowest scoring output of the season.

But in the end, it’s still a loss. A loss the Cavaliers probably don’t deserve, but a win Memphis definitely deserved. The Cavaliers can learn a lot from the way the Grizzlies competed on defense in the 4th quarter. It’s just a shame to waste a 15 point, 22 rebound night from Anderson Varejao.

1 2 3 4 T
CLE 27 20 22 9 78
MEM 24 18 20 22 84

Cleveland

Starters Pos Min FG 3Pt FT +/- Off Reb Ast TO Stl BS BA PF Pts
D. Waiters G 35:19 5-16 0-2 5-6 -6 0 0 3 2 4 0 1 1 15
J. Pargo G 30:35 4-12 1-4 0-0 -5 1 2 3 3 1 0 3 0 9
A. Varejao C 37:17 7-11 0-1 1-2 -3 8 22 3 3 2 1 0 2 15
A. Gee F 33:09 4-11 1-2 0-0 -10 2 5 1 2 0 0 0 4 9
T. Thompson F 32:23 4-7 0-0 1-2 -11 3 5 0 3 2 2 1 5 9
Bench Min FG 3Pt FT +/- Off Reb Ast TO Stl BS BA PF Pts
Totals 31-76 4-16 12-15 14 41 12 16 10 5 5 23 78
Percentages .408 .250 .800 Team Rebounds: 8
D. Gibson 30:06 3-10 2-5 3-3 -1 0 1 2 0 1 0 0 2 11
O. Casspi 14:51 1-3 0-2 0-0 +4 0 1 0 0 0 1 0 2 2
T. Zeller 13:23 0-1 0-0 0-0 +5 0 4 0 1 0 0 0 5 0
S. Samuels 12:57 3-5 0-0 2-2 -3 0 1 0 2 0 1 0 2 8
J. Leuer DNP – Coach’s Decision
C.J. Miles DNP – Coach’s Decision
D. Sloan DNP – Coach’s Decision
L. Walton DNP – Coach’s Decision

Memphis

Starters Pos Min FG 3Pt FT +/- Off Reb Ast TO Stl BS BA PF Pts
J. Bayless G 34:15 3-11 0-3 3-3 +9 1 3 6 3 1 2 1 4 9
T. Allen G 29:27 3-9 0-0 2-2 +11 1 4 0 0 3 0 1 2 8
M. Gasol C 36:35 7-10 0-0 5-5 +5 3 6 3 3 1 0 1 3 19
R. Gay F 42:13 6-13 2-3 1-2 +8 0 6 3 2 2 0 0 1 15
Z. Randolph F 36:09 8-11 0-0 3-6 +12 3 8 1 5 1 1 1 2 19
Bench Min FG 3Pt FT +/- Off Reb Ast TO Stl BS BA PF Pts
Totals 33-71 4-11 14-18 10 33 16 14 8 5 5 15 84
Percentages .465 .364 .778 Team Rebounds: 8
Q. Pondexter 22:09 4-6 2-3 0-0 -6 0 2 1 0 0 0 0 0 10
D. Arthur 18:12 1-5 0-0 0-0 -1 1 3 1 0 0 2 1 0 2
W. Ellington 11:33 1-5 0-2 0-0 -2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 2
M. Speights 5:04 0-1 0-0 0-0 -4 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
J. Selby 4:23 0-0 0-0 0-0 -2 0 0 1 1 0 0 0 2 0
M. Conley DNP – Coach’s Decision
H. Haddadi DNP – Coach’s Decision
  • ThatAlex

    Anderson Varejao better make the All-Star team.

  • JNeids

    These games are hard to swallow. I’m not expecting to be great or anything, but these guys are playing their butts off, and exceeding expectations for 3 1/2 quarters only to tire out for 5 min and watch the game slip away. I know we’re young and just going through growing pains and I’m fine knowing that these losses will make us better in multiple ways (experience, draft position, etc.) but they deserve better endings than they are getting, for a couple games at least.

  • Kunal

    It sucks that we’re losing but it is so great to see the team still be competitive without Kyrie

  • porckchopexpress

    Just a whole bunch of Andy love! 15 and 22 and it doesn’t do justice to what he brings to a game, his talent level has risen to an all-star level caliber, but he hasn’t given up the floor burn, diving into the stands plays.
    Maybe its because he’s been around so long but I really like Boobie. If you had told me 4 years ago that he would turn into a gritty put your nose in a guy’s chest defender, I’d have laughed.
    If Samardo makes a big play early in a game he seems to lock in and give decent production, if he gets beat or makes a mental error he seems to drift. I really wish he’d get it all together because he could be a tremendous asset.

  • http://www.waitingfornextyear.com Andrew Schnitkey

    It’s been awesome seeing how well this team is playing as a whole in Kyrie’s absence. I just hope they don’t immediately revert back to deferring solely to Kyrie when he comes back. These guys need to keep this attitude and mindset in place even when Kyrie is playing.