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Hill, Hood, Clarkson Post Strong Debuts; James Nears Triple-Double in Blowout Win; Three Takeaways

CLEVELAND – Just over one week ago, the Cavaliers lost by 32 points to the Rockets. A few days later, they blew a 21-point lead against one of the worst teams in the NBA.

What a difference a roster overhaul can make.

The Cavs dismantled the Celtics, 121-99, on Sunday afternoon at TD Garden. Jordan Clarkson picked up 17 points in 23 minutes, Rodney Hood knocked down three treys en route to 15 points and George Hill had 12 points, all of whom made their debuts in Wine and Gold.

LeBron James spearheaded the blowout effort with 24 points, eight rebounds and 10 assists, while JR Smith went 6-of-7 from the field for 15 points. Kyrie Irving tallied 18 points and Paul Pierce had his No. 34 jersey retired, but neither came close to the explosive effort from the defending Eastern Conference champions.

Here are three takeaways from a game that could change the complexion of Cleveland’s 2017-18 campaign…

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John Alfes is a senior at John Carroll University, and hails from Westlake, Ohio. His love and passion for the game of baseball originated in 1998, when he played catch with his father at the age of two. A former collegiate pitcher, Alfes currently serves as a Cleveland Cavaliers reporter for AP Radio/Metro Networks and the Cleveland Indians Beat Writer for CBS Sports/Scout Media Network, all while majoring in Communications (focus in Journalism) and English (focus in Professional Writing). He is the Sports Editor for The Carroll News, Sports Director for WJCU 88.7 FM and Senior Writer for the John Carroll Sports Information Department. John is an Eagle Scout and loves his two younger brothers (Conrad and Daniel) and two parents (John and Celeste). You can follow John Alfes on Twitter (@JohnAlfes) or reach him through email (

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