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Cleveland Cavaliers

Cavs-Bulls In-Game Report

By Jason Lloyd Published: January 1, 2011

End 3Q: Bulls 85, Cavs 70
* Remember that 4-5 minute stretch Jamison was talking about? It struck again. The Cavs went nearly seven minutes between field goals, missing a slew of shots in the paint in the process. They finished the quarter 3 of 21 from the floor and scored just nine points.

* The Bulls, meanwhile, did a much better job of attacking the basket. With both teams missing their centers, the paint has been wide open tonight. The Bulls have just finished better.

* This is how it was supposed to go. Given the Cavs' injuries, the Bulls were supposed to win big. But the Cavs fought harder and competed more than perhaps they have all season. Kudos, at least, for that.

Half: Cavs 61, Bulls 53
* Not sure off the top of my head, but this may have been the Cavs' best half of the season. They've played very well in spurts, but given the opponent and all the injuries tonight, it's stunning they're even in this game, let alone winning it.

* They're doing a great job of attacking the basket against one of the league's better defensive teams. Granted, they're without Joakim Noah, but this is still a Bulls team predicated on defense. Manny Harris, particularly, has shown great burst tonight in getting to the basket. Now he has to do a better job of finishing.

* The Bulls fought back to take a 49-47 lead on a Kyle Korver 3-pointer with three minutes left in the half. It looked like the moment when the Bulls were going to take command and build a small lead going into the half. Instead, the Cavs held the Bulls to one basket and a pair of free throws the rest of the way while again building a lead.

* Antawn Jamison said this morning the Cavs have been done in too many times this season by 5-7 minute stretches that destroy any good work they'd done the rest of the night. The key for the final 24 minutes is simple: Keep that from happening again.

End 1Q: Cavs 28, Bulls 24
* Here's the funny thing about not having Mo Williams, Daniel Gibson and Anderson Varejao available tonight. Those who remain know it's on them to salvage this from becoming a blowout. As a result, the Cavs are playing smart defense and they're running the offense the way Byron Scott typically wants it run.

* Now the downside: The Cavs have no depth. Alonzo Gee, the former unemployed D-League player, was the first guy off the bench tonight. It will be difficult for the Cavs to maintain this intensity if only because of the lack of healthy bodies.

* Antawn Jamison might take 30 shots tonight. In fact, he might need to.

* The Bulls are aiding in the effort by missing open jumpers. Chicago shot 38 percent from the floor in the quarter (10 of 26) and Carlos Boozer left early with two fouls. Already without Joakim Noah, the loss of Boozer for seven minutes left the Bulls incredibly thin in the frontcourt.

* The Cavs controlled the game against the Bulls at the Q a few weeks ago until the final three minutes, when the Bulls' superior talent took over and won the game. It would be shocking if it took them that long to do it tonight, but so far it's hard to argue with the Cavs' effort.

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