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Cleveland Cavaliers

Pargo will replace Irving in starting lineup

By Jason Lloyd Published: November 21, 2012
Pargo dribbling
Jeremy Pargo will start tonight at point guard for the Cavaliers in place of injured Kyrie Irving. (AP Photo/Michael Perez)

INDEPENDENCE: Jeremy Pargo will start tonight at point guard when the Cavaliers host the Philadelphia 76ers, Cavs coach Byron Scott said.

Pargo has been inactive most of the season, but moved ahead of Donald Sloan recently and into the backup role. He is replacing Kyrie Irving, who is expected to miss about a month with a fractured left index finger.

Scott chose Pargo because he is a better defender than Sloan and he communicates defensively, something the Cavs have been lacking.

"Offensively I'm not asking him to do nothing he can't do," Scott said. "I know he can run the show and push the tempo. I know he makes good decisions and if he has open shots, I want him to take them. The game plan doesn't necessarily change, we just want to do it better."

Pargo struggled in the preseason, turning the ball over nine times and making just 3 of 16 shots. But he also had 14 assists in just 57 minutes. In three games this season, he is averaging 2.7 points and 1.3 assists. He has four assists and two turnovers in 23 minutes.

Scott briefly considered starting rookie Dion Waiters at the point and moving Daniel Gibson into the starting lineup at shooting guard, but said he didn't want to add that pressure to Waiters. He will, however, spend a lot of time with the ball in his hands.

"I'm comfortable with the ball in my hands, period," Waiters said. "He's playing me in a position where I'm comfortable and giving me opportunities where I'm effective with the ball in my hands."

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