Cleveland- The Cleveland Cavaliers host the Oklahoma City Thunder on Wednesday night in search of their second win this season. Cleveland is coming off a heartbreaking loss Monday night, losing on the road 102-100 to the Orlando Magic. They hope they can buck their losing trend as the Paul George led Thunder are in town, and former MVP Russell Westbrook out with an ankle injury. After a slow start themselves they’ve found their footing as of late, and are in the midst of a five game winning streak. Over the course of their streak OKC is averaging 122.4 points while shooting nearly 50% from the field, two bad signs for the Cavs as they are still struggling mightily on defense.
While Monday night resulted in another loss, the Cavaliers played one of their better games of the season, until the last minute of the game that is. The Cavs held a five point lead with under 30 seconds to go, before watching Evan Fournier hit a 22-foot jumper as time expired. It was one of the Cavaliers most competitive games of the season, especially since six of their nine losses have come by double-digits, including a 32 point loss in Charlotte over the weekend. As if the Cavs start wasn’t bad enough, they got news Tuesday afternoon that forward Sam Dekker is out for 2-4 weeks with a left ankle sprain, Dekker joins the already sidelined Kevin Love.
Those two have started the majority of the season at PF for the Cavs, with Dekker starting the last five. Tonight Cavaliers head coach Larry Drew will use the Cavs fourth starting line-up this season, and a number of different guys could see themselves in the starting group (Kyle Korver, Smith, Frye, or even David Nwaba.)Drew relied on the Cavaliers veterans on Monday, as that seemed to be the formula that worked the best Monday night.
George Hill played his best game of the season scoring 22 points to lead all Cavs scorers, while Jr Smith added 14 off the bench after previously being told he wouldn’t be getting minutes by the front office. With both Hill and Smith playing well Cavs rookie point guard Collin Sexton played his fewest amount of minutes on Monday night, it will be interesting to see if this trend continues or if Drew makes a more concerted effort to get the rookie minutes.
Quicken Loans Arena, Cleveland,Oh
- Cedi Osman
- Collin Sexton
- Rodney Hood
- Jr Smith
- Tristan Thompson
- Paul George
- Steven Adams
- Jerami Grant
- Terrance Ferguson
- Dennis Schroder