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Cleveland Cavaliers

Pregame: Hornets (19-35) at Cavs (16-37)

By Jason Lloyd Published: February 20, 2013
Kyrie and Anthony Davis chat
Anthony Davis and Kyrie Irving, shown during All-Star weekend in Houston, will meet for the first time in tonight's nationally televised game. They are the two most recent No. 1 overall picks. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)


Time: 8 p.m.; Place: The Q; TV/Radio: ESPN, FS Ohio/WTAM, WLEC, WAKR

Injury report: CavsAnderson Varejao (knee, lung) out; Hornets: Eric Gordon (hand) 

Officials: Bill Kennedy, Brent Barnaky, Eddie Rush

Series: First meeting

Cavs probables

Name Ht, Wt Pts Rebs Asts
PG Kyrie Irving 6-3, 191 23.5 3.7 5.5
SG Dion Waiters 6-4, 221 14.2 2.5 3.2
SF Alonzo Gee 6-6, 219 10.4 3.9 1.9
PF Tristan Thompson 6-9, 227 11.4 9.1 1.3
C Tyler Zeller 7-0, 250 8.0 6.2 1.4



Hornets probables

Name Ht, Wt Pts Rebs Asts
PG Greivis Vasquez 6-6, 211 13.8 4.5 9.4
SG Eric Gordon 6-3, 215 16.6 1.5 2.7
SF Al-Farouq Aminu 6-9, 215 7.7 7.5 1.4
PF Anthony Davis 6-10, 220 12.5 7.5 0.9
C  Robin Lopez 7-0, 255 11.5 5.5 0.8



* Like the Cavs, the Hornets are in last place in their division, but they aren't as bad as their record indicates. The Hornets are 13-12 in their last 25 games, but their overall mark is tarnished by two lengthy losing streaks early in the season. 

* The Hornets had a seven-game losing streak in November and an 11-game skid in December that culminated in a woeful 5-22 start. Like the Cavs, they've spent the rest of the season trying to dig out of that hole. 

* Tonight's game marks the first nationally televised Cavs game since LeBron James' initial return to Cleveland on Dec. 5, 2010. It is Kyrie Irving's first game on national television, so while the opponent isn't an elite team, the Cavs should have no trouble getting up for this game. Coach Byron Scott said he told the players after this morning's shootaround they should be "geeked up" to play on national TV.

* The Hornets have gutted their roster since Dell Demps took over as general manager. Jason Smith is the longest-tenured player left on the team -- and this is his third year in New Orleans.

* Tonight's game is the first meeting between the two most recent No. 1 overall picks, which is a big reason ESPN picked up the game. Davis is a defensive specialist and shot blocker with 10 double-doubles already this season. "Just a very good basketball player," coach Byron Scott said. "Long, athletic, great shot blocker. ... I know defensively he can affect the game with his length and shot-blocking ability."

* The Cavs are a coin flip away from having both Davis and Irving. They won the tiebreaker coin flip with the Hornets prior to last year's NBA draft lottery. Had they lost the coin flip, they would've won the Davis lottery. 

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