Indianapolis -- Beating a team that is eight games under .500 can't be classified as a great win. The Cavs will have plenty of tougher games between now and the playoffs. Still the 105-94 win over the Pacers got them their playoff berth and, for the time being, their focus back. So it had its merits.
--There was some disagreement over whether the Cavs had one of those famous/infamous "players' only" meetings this morning. Mere semantics. Basically, LeBron James asked the coaches to leave the huddle and had a few words about taking the road trip very seriously. Two things are important here: 1. LeBron took it upon himself to do it. 2. He led by example when he got on the first bus and came over to the arena early to get extra shooting in. It is the first time I can remember LeBron coming over on the first bus since his rookie season.
--In the fourth quarter I was closely charting each Cavs' possession with a "G" or a "B." As in good or bad. I only wrote down two Bs. They played at a controlled pace, ran when they could and calmly used their sets. The Pacers aren't a great team obviously, but they are a good defensive team yet couldn't stop the Cavs in the fourth. Six of the nine baskets in the fourth were scored in the paint. Plus the Cavs were 12-of-13 at the line in the fourth.
--This game was more like how they played during the winning streak. Yes they made shots, but it was the focus that was the major difference. They lost focus in the fourth quarter in Charlotte and it was gone until tonight.
--Mike Brown took the interesting step of playing Eric Snow instead of Larry Hughes down the stretch. Larry was having a bad night. I still don't like Snow playing 12-15 straight minutes, but tonight he was attacking and hitting jumpers so it made it easier. He had seven rebounds as well. The biggest decision Brown made with Snow was to run a clear-out play for him -- yes Mr. Snow! -- with three minutes left. It turned into a 3-point play that clinched the game. Of course, had Eric been blocked everyone would've ripped both of them. That's life.
--Three years ago I voted Jermaine O'Neal first team All-NBA. I still believe he's one of the top 10-12 players in the league. Tonight he scored 32 points on one leg with the Cavs running all sorts of different defenses and defenders at him. It was a great performance.
--So LeBron is hosting the ESPYs and he says he's not sticking to the script. Hey Bron, not a good idea.
--After the game, Sasha Pavlovic was trying to sing a Young Jeezy song. First, Sasha can't rap, at least not in English. Second, he was apparently messing it all up. So Donyell Marshall and David Wesley were trying to explain to him the lyric was "Go Getta" as in "he's a go-getter" not "he's a go get her" as Sasha as saying. He wasn't getting it, but it was damn funny watching the two of them attempting to explain what a "go-getter" is in comparison to what he thought "go get her" meant. (Note: this was modified once I was clued in to who Young Jeezy was).
--He was playing during the show, but I wonder if Scot Pollard would've liked Sanjaya's hair tonight.