CLEVELAND – Five days after getting losing by 13, 91-78 in our nation’s capital, the Cleveland Cavaliers (7-7) exacted some revenge in defeating the Southeast Division-leading Washington Wizards (9-5), 113-87.
GOOD – Thanks to improved ball movement and a renewed intensity on defense, the Cavaliers came out in attack mode from opening tip-off and lead wire-to-wire with LeBron James leading the way in scoring with 29 points, 10 assists and eight assists.
Along with James, six Cavaliers scored in double figures with Kevin Love scoring 21 points, Anderson Varejao scoring ten, Kyrie Irving scoring 18, Tristan Thompson scoring 10 and Dion Waiters with 15 points.
In what may have been a statement game, Cleveland appears to have made the adjustment of having James play “point forward” in letting him run the offense. Another area of encouragement was in getting the ball out in transition and playing with pace, as they outscored the Wizards, 17-2 and racked up 23 assists on 38 field goals. In the last two games, Cleveland has forced 26 steals and forced more turnovers in holding Orlando and Washington to an average of 80.1 points in two-game win streak.
Defensively, Irving held Wizards’ All-Star point guard, John Wall to six points in 33 minutes. Bradley Beal scored ten points in 28 minutes. Reserve Rasual Butler lead all Wizards scorers with 23 points, followed by Paul Pierce with 15 and Marcin Gortat with 12.
BAD – Despite the 26-point win, the Cavaliers still have a tendency to appear lazy on defense and have shown a tendency to give up easy baskets, as Washington managed to hang around until the fourth quarter in shooting 46.5 percent.
TIDBITS – With the win, the Cavaliers move back to .500 at 7-7
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