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Long-term takeaways from the Cavs’ surprising win over the 76ers: “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.” [Dani Socher/Cavs: The Blog]
Other talking points after back-to-back Philadelphia games: “Cavs are going to keep being really cautious with Kyrie Irving injuries — Not that we learned this for the first time specifically, but it is important to remind ourselves of this dynamic for some perspective. Kyrie Irving isn’t ‘injury-prone’ just because he’s been out these last couple years with a series of ‘injuries’.” [Brendan Bowers/Stepien Rules]
In the spirit of Thanksgiving, here are some Buckeyes tidbits to be thankful for: “Today is all about giving thanks. As Ohio State fans, we are very blessed to have such great athletic programs to follow. The football Buckeyes are 11-0 and have a chance to finish a perfect 12-0 in head coach Urban Meyer’s first season. That’s pretty remarkable if you think about it.” [Tim Shoemaker/The Buckeye Battle Cry]
Yes, Joeckel is the highest-rated lineman and our offense isn’t great, but has this guy actually been watching the Browns?? “3. Cleveland – Luke Joeckel, OT, Texas A&M. Browns will have a new coach, so this pick could go to anything. The defense is solid, but the offense can’t move the ball.” [Jason McIntyre/The Big Lead]
On the Browns side, naming the one player to be most appreciated: “Coaches, quarterbacks and now even owners have changed since the Browns returned to the NFL in 1999, but the one constant of the expansion era Browns has been kicker Phil Dawson. Signing with the Browns a month before Tim Couch was drafted, Dawson is making a case for being the best kicker in the NFL this season as well as the top kicker in Browns history.” [Jamison Hensley/ESPN's AFC North Blog]
Top 10 thankful things related to the Indians. Trust me, this couldn’t have been easy: “1. Progressive Field – While it’s mostly empty these days, it’s still one of the best ballparks in the country. And while I’d much rather enjoy a game in a packed house, I have enjoyed the ability to walk up to the gates 10 minutes before the first pitch a purchase a ticket just about anywhere in the park. We’re lucky to have such a great place to watch our Tribe.
2. The 1990s – The glory days are long gone, but at least we have some fantastic memories – memories that an entire generation before us grew up without.” [Ryan McCrystal/It's Pronounced "Lajaway"]
Now looking forward with a thankful point about the Tribe’s offseason: “I can start by being thankful that the Indians were able to hire Terry Francona, who was arguably the most viable managerial candidate in all of baseball heading into this offseason. Francona is only a manager, but you have to love the fact that he chose to come to Cleveland. He’s a credible baseball guy, and while he isn’t going to immediately bring in free agents with his name-power, and while he isn’t going to immediately change the direction of this team with his baseball knowledge, the ability to do both over time is there.” [Jim Pete/Indians Prospect Insider]
And finally, a shoutout to MAC East champs Kent State in advance of their regular season finale tonight: “The division has been clinched and along with it a spot in next week’s Mid-American Conference championship. After that, a trip to a bowl game. Kent State, ranked in The Associated Press Top 25 for the first time since 1973, has rarely had it so good. And, it would appear there is little to be gained on Friday in a conference finale against Ohio.” [Tom Withers/Associated Press]