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Cavaliers drop third straight game with 114-95 loss to Knicks; three takeaways

2. Fall’s latest (bad) trend

Slow starts and the Cavaliers are a bad trend this season and Sunday night fed right into it.

The Cavs found themselves in a 10-point hole after the first frame, down 29-19. Porzingis and Hardaway Jr. were both already in double-figures with 10 points apiece. New York shot 48.1 percent from the field as a team (13-of-27), compared to the Cavs shooting just  7-of-20.

And if you want any indication of the Cavs’ aggressiveness defensively, they sent New York to the line a grand total of zero times in the opening 12 minutes.

“It’s been costing us the games,” James said of the Cavs’ string of slow starts. “It’s the starting unit, we gotta try to figure it out someway, somehow. Guys are just scoring at will against us. Our defense is pretty bad right now, so that’s the number one thing.”

On Sunday night they just barely missed giving up 30 points in the last five games. As ESPN’s Dave McMenamin pointed out, the Cavs have been outscored by a combined 54 points in the first quarter in the last five games.

“We’re getting boned early, early at the start of the games,” Lue said. “The second unit is coming in, giving us a good lift, giving us energy, but the first unit we’ve got to be better.”

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Ashley is a former basketball player who covers the Cleveland Cavaliers, Indians and high school sports for NEO Sports Insiders. She also covers the Cavs for SB Nation's Fear The Sword. Ashley is a 2015 graduate of John Carroll University and previously worked in political journalism. You can follow her on Twitter @AshleyBastock42

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