Joey Graham and Christian Eyenga went through a full practice today and both are expected to play tomorrow night when the Cavs host the Milwaukee Bucks. Graham, who revealed today he had a torn quadriceps tendon at his right kneecap, has missed the last month. He can provide the type of tough, physical defensive presence coach Byron Scott has been searching for lately.
But Scott also wants to see improvement on the offense. Scott said today he called out a play during Wednesday's loss to the Phoenix Suns that left the players confused since they hadn't run it in a couple of weeks. He called out a few more oldies during practice today and the players were equally baffled. That left Scott fuming.
"If I had hair, I'd pull it out,'' Scott said. "Since I can use words with them I can't use with (the media), that's what I did. It's very frustrating when you're going out there running the offense and you see guys that don't have it or don't know it, because it's something we've been doing all season long. There's no excuse for that."
Scott benched three players for part of the second half against the Suns, although he wouldn't say which three players. Two would seem to be Alonzo Gee and Manny Harris. Scott said "most" of those who didn't know the plays had been here all year. Gee doesn't fall into that category, but he only played two minutes of the fourth quarter. Harris was pulled with 7:24 left in the game and didn't return.
"If we really know the offense, that shouldn’t happen," Scott said. "Most of those guys that made those mistakes have been here all season long, so there’s no excuse for that. They may have to pull their playbooks out, get here earlier and start going over it with us before we even start practicing. That’s something we’ll have to make a point of. Just like we’re doing a lot of emphasis on the defensive end, we might have to start doing it on the offensive end as well."
Scott is sticking with the same starting unit for now, leaving Daniel Gibson to come off the bench. Scott said he conferred with Gibson, who doesn't mind starting or coming off the bench. The Cavs have been looking for more scoring punch out of their bench since both Gibson and Antawn Jamison became starters.
Jamison, it should be noted, was nowhere to be seen when the media were allowed into practice on Thursday. But Scott said he went through most of today's practice and seemed fine after knocking knees with a Suns player on Wednesday.