Ten thoughts for a team that might or might not have quit on this season (not my words) after a 111-99 loss to the not-very-good Boston Celtics.
1. Cavs coach Mike Brown gave credit to five players tonight for how they played in the fourth quarter: Alonzo Gee, Tristan Thompson, Matthew Dellavedova, Jarrett Jack and Tyler Zeller. Said Brown, on the way they moved the ball and played defense, "I hadn't seen that in a while. And it was fun to see."
2. Brown was then asked, point blank, if the front-liners—meaning Kyrie Irving, Dion Waiters, etc—had mailed in the season. That should be a question answered by a coach with a resounding "Hell no, we're still fighting, this team has a lot of fight in it." Brown's answer?
3. "I don't know." He then added, "When you watch us play, we don't look like we're playing to get better. We look like we're playing, going through the motions. And it's not good. It's not good at all."
4. The head coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers isn't sure if this team has quit on this season or not.
5. Kelly Olynyk (who?) had the best night of his career—25 points, which tied a career high, and 12 rebounds, which set a career high. At halftime, he had 20 points and eight rebounds.
6. Kelly Olynyk. Who looks, more-so than any other NBA player not named Brian Scalabrine, like someone they just picked out of the crowd and handed him a jersey, had 20 and 8 at halftime, and four times drove right past Cavaliers defenders.
7. Only two players were seen in the locker room after the game once the media was let in—Spencer Hawes and Tristan Thompson. Irving, Waiters, Varejao, etc. had all left.
8. Though you could make a case they've been gone for a couple days. Brown isn't sure if they've mailed in the season. There's not a lot of evidence to deny it.
9. This game was not nearly as close as the final score indicates—the Celtics led 89-58 heading into the fourth quarter. That's a 31-point lead for a 25-win Celtics team that was playing on the road.
10. Kelly Olynyk.