Baron Davis will make his first start for the Cavaliers tonight against the Miami Heat. While it seems ironic Davis will be starting against LeBron James and the Heat, coach Byron Scott said the opponent had nothing to do with the decision.
"I thought it was time the last game," Scott said. "But he felt more comfortable coming off the bench."
Davis' minutes won't increase much. He has averaged about 24 per game, and Scott said that would only increase by two or three minutes a game at most.
Davis has played in six games with the Cavs, averaging 15.3 points and 4.8 assists. They are 2-4 in those games and Davis has hit clutch 3-pointers late in both victories (against the New York Knicks and Detroit Pistons) to seal the wins. The Cavs have been searching for a closer who can take and make clutch shots most of the season. Scott believes Davis can be that guy.
"He's never been afraid to take that shot," Scott said. "You have a lot of guys who will make that pass because they don't want to take that shot. They don't want to be considered the goat. Baron doesn't mind being the goat or the hero. You've got to have a guy that has those type of cajones to go out there and take that shot every now and then. He's been doing that for us."
Davis replaces Ramon Sessions, who has fared well as a starter, but who has been a backup most of his career. Davis has seemed to embrace his role as mentor to the young Cavs and enjoyed his time coming off the bench. It allowed him to watch the first few minutes of games and coach the rookies sitting next to him.
Scott has been anxious for Davis to start the last few games, but Davis kept resisting. Scott's goal was for Davis to start at least the last 10 games of the season. There are 10 games left, beginning with tonight's showdown with the Heat.