BROOKLYN, N.Y.: The Cavs managed just four baskets in the fourth quarter Saturday and lost to the Brooklyn Nets 89-82 for their seventh loss in their last eight games and their ninth in their last 11 games.
The Nets gave Kevin Garnett the night off and the Cavs were again without Kyrie Irving, who missed his second game with an injured left knee. His status for Sunday’s home game against the Indiana Pacers isn’t yet known, but Irving didn’t make the trip to Brooklyn and therefore would seem unlikely for Sunday.
The Nets believe they’re starting to figure some things out, particularly with Deron Williams having solid games in consecutive performances after the Nets won at Oklahoma City on Thursday. The Cavs aren’t as fortunate.
Without Irving’s 22.2 points, the offense again sputtered. The Cavs shot 37 percent and managed 82 points after shooting 34 percent and scoring 79 points in regulation Thursday against the Orlando Magic.
Dion Waiters had 26 points, including 9 in the third quarter when the Cavs briefly took the lead, but the offense stalled again in the fourth quarter as the Nets took control.
Brown has grown accustomed to using three-guard lineups much of the season, but he went even more dramatic Saturday and played four guards. Waiters, Jarrett Jack, C.J. Miles and Matthew Dellavedova played the bulk of the fourth quarter together with Anderson Varejao, but the Cavs couldn’t close the deficit.
Miles had 17 points and 7 rebounds, Dellavedova had 13 points and Varejao had 11 rebounds one game after tying the franchise record of 25 on Thursday. But Thompson’s layup with 9:30 left was the Cavs’ only fourth-quarter basket through the first seven minutes, allowing the Nets to stretch a 67-65 lead at the start of the quarter to 78-71. Varejao’s basket with 5:15 left was the Cavs’ last until the final minute, when the outcome had already been decided.
Williams had 21 points and 6 assists, Pierce had 17 points and 5 assists and Reggie Evans had 11 rebounds starting in place of Garnett.
The Cavs ended the night with 14 assists and 14 turnovers.