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PREVIEW: Cavs continue 5-game homestand against Nets on Tuesday

Sustain defensive success

With four additions and six subtractions in the last month, Cleveland is still working through the peaks and valleys of a revamped roster. It has lost 2-of-3 games and shot 23.1 percent (16-of-69) from beyond the arc since the All-Star break, but the defense has taken on an improved form.

The younger lineup has kept the opposition below 45 percent shooting in five of the last six games, improving their defensive rating to 104.0 since the trade deadline, the 10th-best mark in the league.

Here are the top six defenders in the past five games, a testament to general manager Koby Altman’s deadline strategy…

  1. Kyle Korver, 92.5 defensive rating
  2. Jordan Clarkson, 93.3 defensive rating
  3. Larry Nance Jr., 93.3 defensive rating
  4. Jeff Green, 99.5 defensive rating
  5. Rodney Hood, 99.8 defensive rating
  6. George Hill, 105.1 defensive rating

With championship aspirations still in mind, it is evident that the new additions have injected life on the defensive end. The Cavaliers rank 28th in defensive rating (109.3), but that figures to improve based on these results.

The Nets are 26th in the NBA in offensive rating (103.0), as only D’Angelo Russell and DeMarre Carroll present serious challenges for an opposing unit.

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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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